While many floral tattoos have featured popular, bulbous flowers for a long time, daintier and more simplistic flowers have become increasingly favored as inspiration for tattoos. One such flower is the yarrow.
Yarrows are simple perennial wildflowers that grow in clusters, with several small flowers making up a bundle at the top of the stem.
The small flowers that make up these clusters are often compared to daisies in terms of appearance. These lovely flowers can often be found growing in meadows and fields, but also make nice house plants or garden plants.
What Is The History Of Yarrow Tattoos?
The yarrow flower has been the centerpiece of many myths, legends, and stories for centuries within various cultures. Moreover, the flower has been believed to have various health and healing benefits. For instance, there’s a Greek myth about Achilles using yarrows to help his soldiers who were wounded in battle.
Naturally, these flowers would grow in Mediterranean regions, as well as in Europe and parts of Asia. They were cultivated to be used in various ways, from medicinal to spiritual to wellness and decorative purposes.
It can be estimated that yarrows have been the subject of floral tattoos for some time, since flowers in general have been some of the oldest inspirations known for tattooing. These flowers being subjects for tattoos can’t be traced definitively back to a particular time period, however.
Smaller flowers with more organic shapes and wildflowers have grown in popularity for tattoos recently. These tattoos can have just as much meaning for people as bigger flowers with more robust petals or widespread recognition.
What Do Yarrows Symbolize?
Due to the aforementioned myth regarding Achilles and his use of yarrows, the flower is often considered a symbol of bravery and courage, especially for those involved in the military or army. This is also why yarrows are often referred to as Achillea flowers. In a similar vein, yarrows are seen as a symbol of protection and safekeeping.
Yarrows are also an important symbol of Chinese medicine and Chinese culture. There are many traditions within Chinese culture that incorporate yarrows on some level.
Yarrows have also been associated with metaphysical and psychic abilities. There is a belief within this type of spirituality that these flowers are vessels for magic abilities. As such, they are used in a variety of spells and other forms of magic or mysticism.
Extending from the association with magic, the yarrow can be a symbol of protection. It has been believed to help keep evil away. For those who may want to resist temptation or who hope to manifest a general aura of protection around them, having a yarrow as a tattoo can be the perfect way to symbolize this manifestation.
What Do Yarrow Tattoos Mean?
The yarrow flower is sometimes referred to as the seven year’s love flower, as it used to be included in wedding decorations and taken back to the couple’s bedroom in the hopes that it would foster perpetual, long lasting love. Hence, a yarrow could mean a representation of a relationship in a less extreme way than getting someone’s name tattooed on your body.
The yarrow can also be a meaningful way to represent a particular health journey, an ongoing battle against health issues, or a memorial for a health battle that has been overcome. These flowers have been believed to have healing properties, whether through being made into medicine or simply being in your home.
Yarrows can be grown in different colors as well, and over time, colorful yarrows have been assigned their own special meaning.
White flowers can be a symbol of hope, reinvigoration, and new life.
Orange flowers can mean gratefulness and zest, and pink can mean similar sentiments, as well as love.
Red yarrows can mean romanticism as well as courage and bravery.
Where Do Yarrow Tattoos Usually Go?
A yarrow tattoo can make an excellent addition to your body in just about any placement you desire. However, those with yarrow tattoos have generally chosen to get them on their arm or on their leg. This tattoo can also be designed as a larger piece that can fill up part of the back.
With the amount of detail that can go into tattooing a yarrow flower, these particular tattoos tend to be a bit larger than some other floral tattoos. With their simple visage, they can also be incorporated into a larger tattoo in a way that surrounds an existing tattoo or another flower.
Characteristics And Styles Of Yarrow Tattoos
There are a lot of very intricate details within a yarrow that takes a very skillful tattoo artist to aptly capture it in a tattoo. Even though yarrow flowers can be colorful, they can be captured quite beautifully with using outlining, and even shading.
There are more minimalist tattoos using linework that can still capture the essence of the yarrow flower without all of the intricate detail. Line work has become very popular for those who want tattoos but aren’t into big, elaborate pieces of art on their body.
Simple outlines of the flower, even attached to the stem and leaves, can make for a stunning minimalist tattoo that still has a unique amount of detail. These flowers can grow to be quite tall, so showcasing that trait in a tattoo that extends either up the arm, up the leg, or even up the back can showcase its essence quite beautifully.
Some yarrows will grow multiple flowers on one stem, which can be easily shown in a tattoo and is often how they’re depicted.
Yarrows can mean so many things to so many, as their meanings and symbolisms have evolved over centuries. Hence, a yarrow tattoo could have a different meaning for just about anyone who chooses this pretty little flower as a tattoo.
These flowers don’t have to mean anything to those who choose them as a tattoo, but almost anyone can find something special within one of the uses or culturally significant aspects of the yarrow.