From the Studio: Poetry of Flowers Collection
The Poetry of Flowers Collection has been years in the making. What originally began as a quest to make a charm collection to tie in birth stones or birth months, evolved into something much more meaningful (and detailed!) while still also fulfilling the original concept. The new Poetry of Flowers Collection poses the question: you are the flower... but which flower are you?
Comprised of twelve charms, each with its own flower and special shape, all made with 100% recycled 14k yellow gold. Every flower has two qualities engraved on the back, ranging from loyalty & love to joy & remembrance. Let's take a peek behind the scenes of the design journey of the collection with our creative director and design team!
On concepting the collection
"We had been searching for a way to express temporality, or seasons, while not being beholden to something too tied to a specific birth month. After so many years, birth flowers felt like the right framework to hang our collective hats on - but we couldn’t stop there. Each flower poem charm has a small hidden element that comes from our Catbird world: a spider hangs from the rose, daffodils emerge from a basket (we love baskets), a swan bobs behind a water lily, and morning glory creeps up a chain link fence - just like our neighborhood in late summer.
I hope you love the Poetry of Flowers collection as much as we do. I believe there is a flower for everyone, and for all occasions, from sad to sweet. You are the flower."
- Leigh, Catbird Creative Director
On the designing the flower..
"The collection started with a first round of sketches that were just little rough flowers inside tiny oval shapes. We made pages and pages of sketches for each flower and it’s design elements, referencing vintage jewelry, embroidered hankies, ornamental frames and some talking flowers from Alice in Wonderland. We knew we wanted to develop the charms in CAD so we could incorporate our long list of tiny design motifs like a bat behind the marigold, a snake border around the chrysanthemum and Poppy seeds around the poppy. We tried to use a variety of shapes and picked each one according to the flower it fit best."
- Rebecca, Catbird Designer
On developing the handwriting on the back of the charms..
"We went back and forth with our CAD designer trying to find a font that closely matched Jasmine’s beautiful handwriting but nothing felt right and all the fonts just felt too commercial. We decided to make a font out of Jasmine’s actual handwriting and vectorized each letter as its own tiny little drawing to use as the engraving."
-Borah, Catbird Designer
"I collected lots of pens this year, trying to figure out which ones worked the best. My favorite pen was always the Muji brush pen, but for the text in the charm collection, I used a Pantel Sign pen because it gives nice crisp lines. Highly recommend it! "
-Jasmine, Catbird Designer
How long was the design process for the collection?
"Oh man…I don't even know… Honestly, if there hadn't been a deadline we’d probably still be working on them. Each and every detail was thoroughly, deeply considered, like rotating a half millimeter star 10 degrees so it was just askew enough from the one next to it or making sure the border of the snowdrop charm had the same spirit as the lace handkerchief we were pulling inspiration from.
The Water Lily was particularly difficult because it included an entire scene behind it. We didn't want anything overshadowing the flower however we didn’t want to take away too much detail from the swan, the lake, and the night sky - finding the right balance was tricky. Also getting the Daisy just right took many iterations. The face was so small we were worried it would be lost once the piece was polished. Getting it the right size and depth took a few edits but it turned out just as we had been imagining it."
"I love the Daisy smile of course, and any featured creatures that might be found in a garden, like the spider, snake, bat, and butterfly." - Jasmine
"I LOVE the poppy seeds around the border of the poppy charm. This was a last minute Leigh edit and it turned out being my favorite charm out of the bunch specifically because of that detail. And the Daisy charm. That little face kills me." - Borah
"My favorite detail is the chain link fence on the morning glory charm. It reminds me of Brooklyn in the summer." - Rebecca
"Definitely getting a Daisy charm for my Daisy girl! I’m excited to see them all in a jumble - specifically the Daisy/Rose charm with the Little Butterfly / Gentle Spider charm next to it! Like the charms are seeing themselves in a painting, or mirror if that makes sense!" -Jasmine
"I love these on a thin ribbon, or anchoring a long necklace with other charms. I also like the idea of tying a bow onto the bail with a ribbon and wearing it on a choker." - Borah
"I love the idea of getting one for each of my loved ones and wearing them in a jumble on a longish chain or tucking a single charm into the clasp on a bracelet." -Rebecca
Meet the Flowers
Full of hope & beauty
Snowdrop is January's birth flower
Full of love & protection
Violet is February's birth flower
Full of creativity & renewal
Daffodil is March's birth flower
Full of hope & new beginnings
Daisy is April's birth flower
Full of humility & sweetness
Lily of the Valley is May's birth flower
Full of gratitude and grace
Rose is June's birth flower
Full of truth & peace
Water Lily is July's birth flower
Full of strength & memory
Poppy is August's birth flower
Full of enduring love & care
Morning Glory is September's birth flower
Full of remembrance & joy
Marigold is October's birth flower