Tussie-Mussie

This beautiful herb bouquet can be wrapped in a bit of lace or a posy holder and given as a gift or kept for a centerpiece.


Enlarge Image Tussie-Mussie

Also known as tuzzy-muzzies, these herbal nosegays were used to disguise street odors in medieval Europe long before bathing and public sanitation were common. During this era, women and men carried the fragrant bouquets as they traveled and held them to their noses to mask the odors they encountered. Tiny variations were attached to men's lapels and walking sticks; women sometimes wore them on their arms or placed them in tiny vials of water attached to their lace bodices.

Over the ages, tussie-mussies became known as symbolic gifts. The meanings assigned to various herbs have intrigued the people of many cultures. In England, an especially active time for floriography (the art of sending messages with flowers) was in the early 1700s. In the United States, interest in this ancient art blossomed during the Victorian era of the 1800s. Lovers and friends of the time used tussie-mussies to communicate heartfelt messages.

These meanings are associated with herbs you might choose for your own tussie-mussie: Artemisia: Dignity Hearty ivy: Friendship or marriage Lemon balm: Sympathy Mint: Wisdom Parsley: Festivity Rosemary: Remembrance Roses: Love Sage: Esteem, good health, or long life Statice: Everlasting Sweet violets: Modesty

What You Need:
  • Fresh or dried herbs and flowers
  • Floral tape and wire
  • Lace or a posy holder
Instructions:
Enlarge Image Herbal Nosegay

1. Create several small bunches of herbs and secure them with floral tape. Each bunch should include just one type of herb or flower. Select a center flower to convey the main message, then use floral tape to encircle it with an herb of another variety.

2. Add surrounding rings of herbs, varying the size, color, or texture of each layer to add interest. Place your bouquet in a bit of lace or a posy holder.

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