Monday, October 18, 2010

Homecoming Mums and Garters

The chrysanthemum is the Queen of the Fall Flowers

I thought everyone could use a little history lesson. I didn't know the history of the Homecoming mum, only that it was a tradition. It is not only a southern tradition, but a Texas tradition. So, when I was in High School, like a good southern young lady, I just took part in the tradition without ever really knowing why......Now that I have a son in high school, I really wanted to know how it all started.

Homecoming - 10/15/10

The first homecoming celebration dates back to the year 1911. University of Missouri Athletic Director, Chester Brewer, afraid that fans and alumnus would not attend the “big game” due to a change in location, devised a plan to add some excitement to the game. He challenged the alumnus to return home for a great celebration with parades, parties, a rally, and of course the big game.
 For many of us in the South, and for virtually all Texans, our introduction to the chrysanthemum is a corsage for the girlfriends/dates for the Homecoming football games.


On their way to the "big game".

It’s once again homecoming season across the nation, but in Texas and Oklahoma particularly. Texas students take homecoming mums just as seriously as the homecoming football game itself. I think you can tell by the size of the mum and garter in this picture.

In Cypress, Texas the homecoming mum is an actual work of art. The silk flower has replaced the chrysanthemum as the centerpiece for homecoming mums, and you will find them decorated with dozens of charms, ribbons, bells, and even with the high school mascot, teddy bear or a special sport or interest that your date is involved in. The evolution of the “mum” has been a sight to see.

It is, in short, a fashion statement. A MAJOR fashion statement!
But homecoming mums are so much more than that. They are a sign that somebody loves you. They’re no longer given only by boyfriends.

Mums can come from friends, your mom, dad, aunt, really anyone. Anybody who's anybody wears one.

A homecoming mum can easily cost $100 and up...WAYYYY up! and weigh as much as 12 pounds!
Homecoming mums have become a status symbol for many high school students. Designs change every year. Now....the colors change by class, (ex. Senior mums may be gold and white, Juniors may be be red and gold only, everyone else red, gold and white etc.) When I was in High School (and we dont want to get into what year that was, I might cry). We only used our school colors. These days, the more original the better.

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