This St. Patricks Day, Bring The Luck Of The Irish To Your Style With Fleur’d Pins


Model Sean Alexander in Fleur’d Pins Green Leather Carnation Andrew Werner

It can be argued of course that the aspects of Irish culture which have survived in the United States are those which have had a functional value; that the Irish family institutions were modified and adapted to meet the exigencies of life during the mass immigration to our beloved USA. The Irish religious, superstitious and even fashion beliefs fulfilled important needs for the hard-working newcomers. Actually, there is no contradiction the superstitious emphasis upon the persistence of Irish cultural traditions and the functional explanations offered. Whether the unique cultural characteristics of the Irish-American community are viewed as survivals of an Irish heritage or as functional adjustments to a specific situation in which Irish Americans found themselves, the Irish-American way of life is a subculture, a variety of the larger American culture.

Saint Patrick’s Day, (Irish: Lá Fhéile Pádraig) is a cultural and religious celebration held on March 17, which is the death date of Saint Patrick (c. AD 385-461), the most prominent saint in rank, in Ireland. The day commemorates Saint Patrick and the arrival of Christianity in Ireland, as well as celebrating both the heritage and culture of the Irish legacy.

He was born in Roman Britain in the fourth century, into a wealthy Romano-British family. He had been taught by his father who was a deacon and his grandfather who was a priest in the Christian church. According to the Declaration, at the age of sixteen, he was kidnapped by Irish raiders and taken as a slave to Gaelic Ireland. History says that he spent six years there working as a shepherd and it was during this time he “found God”. The Declaration says that God informed Patrick to flee to the coast, where a ship would be waiting to take him home and he did just that. After finding his way back home, Patrick went on to become a priest.

According to tradition, Patrick returned to Ireland to convert the pagan Irish population to Christianity. History says that he spent quite some time evangelizing in the northern half of Ireland and converted many people to Christianity. Patrick’s efforts against the druids and non-believers were eventually turned into an fable that states he drove “snakes” out of Ireland.  The snakes were a metaphor for the evil-doers or disbelievers at that time. Still, tradition holds true that he died on 17 March and was buried at Downpatrick. Over the following centuries, legends abound grew up around Patrick and he became Ireland’s foremost saint. So where does all that information leave a fashion audience yearning for an explanation?

Fleur’d Pins Green Leather Carnation $100.00 -Made from 100% premium lambskin leatherAndrew Werner

Well, every March 17, we seemingly break out every piece of green clothing and jewelry, don shamrock-shaped pins and glasses, and even dye our bagels and many times beverages, green. Green is everywhere on St. Partick’s Day. Contrary to public belief, the original color associated with St. Patrick’s Day was actually blue. Early paintings and depictions of St. Patrick show him wearing blue, and the official color of the Order of St. Patrick, part of Ireland’s chivalry, was a sky blue known as “St. Patrick’s Blue.” One of the reasons green replaced blue was because of Ireland’s nickname, The Emerald Isle. The green stripe in the Irish flag also played a vital role in the donning of green apparel. Traditionally, the green represents the Catholics of Ireland, the orange represents the Protestant population, and the white in the middle symbolizes the peace between the two religions. Go figure.

Now then, the four-leaf clover is a rare variation of the common three-leaf version. According to time-honored doctrines and superstition, such clovers bring good luck. History states that it is not clear when or how this superstition started. The earliest mention of “Fower-leafed or purple grasse” is from 1640 and simply says that it was kept in gardens because it was good for children. Another mention from 1869 says that four-leaf clovers were “gathered at night-time during the full moon by sorceresses, who mixed it with other ingredients, while young girls in search happiness made quest of the plant by day”.  The first reference to luck might come from an 11-year-old girl, who wrote in an 1877  letter to St. Nicholas Magazine, “Did the fairies ever whisper in your ear, that a four-leaf clover brought good luck to the finder?”

It is highly debated amongst environmentalist’s whether the fourth leaf is caused genetically or environmentally. Nevertheless, it is indeed a pronounced rarity. In fact, 1 in 5,000 clovers suggests a possible recessive gene appearing at a low frequency. Alternatively, four-leaf clovers could be caused by somatic mutation or a developmental error of environmental causes.

Matthew Gillis wearing Fleur’d Pins Yellow Gold Python Gardenia – Andrew Werner

While all this talk is brewing-up towards St. Patricks day, one entrepreneur is delivering a touch of class to those of us who wish to wear green, but like to keep it a tad bit polished. Founded by NYC based (fashion, beauty, and society) photographer Andrew Werner, Fleur’d Pins, is marketed as the ‘timeless symbol of the well-dressed.‘ A collection of lapel flowers which are handcrafted in the USA range in materials from luxury fabrics to leathers and exotics. On many occasions, men will ask me how to add their own flair to a suit or sports jacket; Fleur’d Pins seem to be a fun addition and twist to one’s wardrobe. Werner, a Long Island native, sought to remedy the age-old conundrum of how can men stand out in a sea of tuxedos. He began by handcrafting the iconic Fleurs he’d wear to express his personal brand style and many industry trendsetters quickly took note and soon began to commission Werner for their own Fleurs. Without realizing it, his small passion project was slowly becoming a reality and growing into a contemporary, RTW accessories line.

Sean Alexander in Fleur’d Pins White Patent Leather Camellia – Andrew Werner

I recently had the privilege of speaking with photographer and CEO of Fleur’d Pins about what makes Fleur’d Pins unique, where does one wear a Fleur and the recently released Green Leather Carnation- that will hopefully bring the luck of the Irish to all that wear it!

Joseph DeAcetis: Talk to Forbes about the DNA and brand history of Fleur’d Pins?

Andrew Werner: Fleur’d Pins started off as a passion project of mine several years ago when I was invited to a black-tie affair and didn’t want to blend into a ‘sea of tuxedos’, I needed an accessory that was as sophisticated and tailored as my outfit but that gave me that unique pop – I needed something that captured my individual style and my unique personal brand. I created Fleur’d Pins to give men the ability to elevate their look and stand out from the crowd, while still keeping true to the iconic symbol of the well-dressed gentleman.

The boutonniere is an accessory that dates back centuries, where it was used during times of war for men to recognize friends from enemies – later it was popularized as a fashion statement in the early 19th century to distinguish men of high society, a “who’s who of sorts”. This concept of visual identification is still vital today in the worlds of business, romance, entertainment, and events, The Fleur’d brand is not only about dressing impeccably well but also about succeeding in life, signaling to the world who you are as a man of class, courage, morals, and prestige.

A Fleur’d pin is a status symbol, a mark of confidence, a conversation starter. With the multiple patterns, colors and textures in our collections, there is the perfect Fleur’d Pins bloom for every man and occasion.

Photographer Andrew Werner during NYFW FW19photo by Dimitrios Kambouris – Getty Images

JD: Talk to us about the recently released Green Leather Carnation?

AW:  I am excited to release this Fleur’d bloom, right in time for St. Patrick’s Day!  There are men out there that will celebrate this holiday in their comical ‘Kiss Me I’m Irish’ t-shirts and combine several shades of green clothing that should never be put together in a single outfit! However, for the gentlemen out there that want to make other’s green with envy this holiday, Fleur’d Pins provides a classier alternative. Our Green Leather Carnation offers men an opportunity to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day a bit more elegantly, it’s modest size and bold color is the perfect combination to say “Kiss me if your feeling lucky!” and enjoy a St. Patty’s day brew on the town and even bring a lucky streak in the boardroom too. Its well-crafted design also allows gentlemen to where this luck charm year-round!

JD: Do you believe in the luck of the Irish?

AW: Of course I believe in the luck of the Irish!  Belief is the key to making something happen in your life, without belief, your passion, your ideas, your desires go nowhere. I have experienced this first hand. Things only have as much power as the energy and faith you put into them. Historically, people have celebrated the notion of luck by handing down certain “lucky” personal items in their family, or by donning a pair of lucky socks – taking this concept, we created our Green Leather Carnation to give a new generation an updated luck charm they can wear in style!

Fleur’d Pins Gold Python GardeniaAndrew Werner

Yellow Gold Python Gardenia

JD:  Where is the product made and why?

AW: Our lapel flowers are all proudly handcrafted in the USA for the simple reason that we wanted to keep the business local as we expand globally. Sourcing our materials in New York City supports the community where we live, work, and grow. Another great reason is that our turn around time for production is exponentially faster and we can stock and re-stock our product to keep up with demand!

JD: In your opinion, why are men interested in wearing them?

AW: Great question, we are seeing the re-emergence of dressing to impress – dressing for success culture and lifestyle in recent years. While being well-dressed has always been there, there is a growing trend in younger generations of men to put more emphasis on this in addition to wanting to embrace their own personal brand/style into their attire. Men want a bit flair in our looks, we want to stand out not blend in.  Today’s gentlemen want to embody the timeless characteristics of elegance, class, sophistication, and power, but in a modern way, which Fleur’d Pins captures in our collections.  Wearing a Fleur’d bloom captivates a person’s eye and brings attention to the person wearing it, just as in nature how natural blooms attract with their looks, color, and fragrance or how a lion with its noticeable mane and confidence attracts a mate.

JD:What makes Fleur’d Pins unique?

AW: What makes Fleur’d Pins unique is the way wearing one of our pieces makes the person feel – confident, stylish – a man of class – elite. Our pins elevate the man, not simply the outfit.  This feeling is simply reinforced when the wearer receives a compliment on their Fleur.  There is passion in what we do to make moments like happen.  Every step along the way from the selection of the quality materials we use, the way each petal is molded and then assembled by hand, right down to the Fleur being placed on a lapel, coat, or wherever someone decides to wear it, our flowers serve the purpose of complimenting a man’s unique style.

JD: Where does one wear a Fleur?

AW: Our Fleur’d Pins are ready to wear for business, romance, events, entertainment and leisure.  Traditionally, boutonnières are worn centered on the left lapel of a blazer, tuxedo jacket, coat, etc.  Some lapels have a small buttonhole, however, not all of them do.  To remedy this, we made our pieces accessible for all by putting them on a pin and can be worn anywhere.  We have seen customers’ style themselves with multiple in a cluster, in place of a bowtie, as a scarf ring, on their hats, and even as a tiepin. We applaud their creativity and embrace that everyone is an individual. You can see some of our suggested looks as well as share how you wear your bloom on Instagram, @FleurdPins #FleurdPins

JD: If you could have one famous celebrity wear Fleur’d Pins, who would it be and why?

AW: Since our first collection blossomed 4 years ago, we have had the most notable names in entertainment, fashion, sports, all the way to former Presidents wear our pieces.  I would love to see George Clooney #GetFleurd!  He is one of the most well-dressed and quintessential metropolitan men in the public eye who is more than just one of the ‘sexiest people alive’.  Aligning himself with over two dozen charities and foundations, he is someone I feel embodies the values and brand of Fleur’d Pins.

JD: Name your 3 top retailers

AW: Growing up on Long Island I would love to come into Manhattan to visit my grandparents and experience some of the most luxurious stores and brands the fashion world had to offer.  Let me tell you that in my wildest dreams I did not imagine that one day, a product I would create would be in some of them.  Currently, aside from our site, www.FleurdPins.com, our Fleurs are sold in Barney’s New York, Bergdorf Goodman Men’s Store, Nordstrom Men’s Store, among several other select premium retailers.

Fleur’d Pins White Patent Leather CamelliaAndrew Werner

JD: Give me 3 adjectives describing Fleur’d Pins?

AW: Fleur’d Pins are dignified, cultured, and debonair.  Each of these words speaks to the fashion-forward wearer who wants that polished gentlemanly aesthetic.

For more information on Andrew Werner, visit AndrewWernerPhotography.com and follow @AndrewWerner – for more information on Fleur’d Pins, visit FleurdPins.com & follow on Instagram, @FleurdPins

 



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