Newton Flower Shop raises money for Ukraine with Vinok-making classes

NEWTON, Mass. (WBZ NewsRadio) — Traditional Ukrainian floral wreaths have found their way into the Commonwealth thanks to workshops taught by a Newton florist.

Derby Farm Flowers & Gardens in Piccadilly Square offered Vinok fundraising workshops over the weekend, with proceeds going to Sunflower of Peace, a Newton-based nonprofit that provides medical and humanitarian aid to Ukrainians. Vinoks are flower crowns used in traditional Ukrainian ceremonies and are usually worn by single women, especially on holy days, said Lucinda Chrislip, co-owner of Derby Farms Flowers.

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“Women dress up, adorn themselves with these flower crowns. The colors, the flowers have a special meaning and represent different places or regions where they could come from,” Chrislip said.

According to the florist, Ukrainian women have been wearing Vinoks since the 2014 revolution as a symbol of Ukrainian pride and protest.

“We all feel helpless about what is happening in Ukraine right now. We send flowers when we sometimes feel helpless, and when we want to lift ourselves up or show compassion, and I think that’s just a another way to use flowers in the same way.” Chrislip said.

WBZ’s Suzanne Sausville (@wbzSausville) reports.

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