The red field poppy has become the symbol of remembrance around the world and to this day, people wear field poppies on their lapels, especially in England on Remembrance Day, November 11 and the week before and after. In the U.S. poppies are worn on Veterans Day, November 11 and Memorial Day, May 25.
Unfortunately, most people wear cheap plastic flowers that have no aesthetic value but are simply worn as a symbol for remembrance. Hence, Fort Belvedere has created high quality Remembrance Poppies that look like the real poppies from Flanders field
But how did the poppy become the symbol of remembrance and people suffering from the aftermaths of wars?
Flanders in Belgium was a battlefield during WWI and when the Canadian soldier John McCrae wrote a poem following the death of a friend in May 1915, the red flanders poppies inspired him to these lines:
In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place: and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing gly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
However, it took until November 9th, 1918 just two days before Armistice was declared when the American Moina Michael. That day, she read this "In Flanders Field Poppy" poem in a magazine and felt so deeply touched that she made a pledge to always wear a red poppy of Flanders Fields as a sign of remembrance. Since she was on duty at the YMCA Overseas War Secretaries' headquarters in New York, she used some poppies for decoration.
Afterwards, three men attending the conference handed her $10 to pay for the flowers. Instead of putting the money into her own pocket, she decided to buy 25 poppies for the delegates to wear. It took her a while before she found one large and twenty-four small orange red silk poppies at Wanamaker's department store. She kept one for herself and handed out the other ones from them to wear on their lapels.
Just keep them in the Fort Belvedere gift box when you are finished wearing it and it will be fine. Also make sure not to bend the wire incessantly to prevent it from breaking apart.
Ideally, your jacket should have a stem keeper. We explained here how you can make one and how a boutonniere should be worn. If your lapel has a closed buttonhole, use a razor blade or a small sharp knife and carefully cut the buttonhole. Be very careful and do it at your own risk, though I have done it many times on weddings and it is no problem at all.
If you have any questions, or need help with choosing a scarf for yourself or a loved one, please get in touch with us, we are always happy to help you.