French Friday #15: Fleur de Lys

Cafe Du Monde Coffee

This week's French Word on La Tasse de Café

by Mademoiselle Love

Fleur de Lys

French Pronunciation: |  flœʀ de leese |

English Pronunciation: | flœʀ de lee |

I landed in New Orleans today for a trip to the homeland, and as I write, I am inhaling my first Café du Monde café au lait of the trip. My, does home taste delicious!

Being in New Orleans, pretty much everywhere I turn, I see a very special symbol, the fleur de lys, and it seemed fitting to discuss it with you fine folks since it is a standard part of New Orleans fashion

It's an ancient symbol that has most famously been used to represent French royalty, and it recalls Louisiana's rich heritage. 

The fleur de lys symbol, which looks like this 
Mignon Faget Fleur de Lys
Mignon Faget Earring

...was derived from the lily or the iris flower (it's still debated). Even though it has been used in Louisiana for a couple hundred years, it did not become the state's official symbol until 2008. 
Back in the day, before I realized how cool New Orleans and Louisiana were, I rejected this symbol. It might have to do with The Saints, whose black and gold fleur de lys uniforms I found so cheesy. Now I embrace it all, and you should too!

Let's see how Simone and Amy Lynn handle this fashion statement as they get ready to attend a New Orleans Saints Game:

Simone: OMG, Amy Lynn, are you really going to wear that hideous black and gold boa and those fleur de lys earrings?

Amy Lynn: Well, yeah! I gotta support my team and my totally radical home state!

Simone: Well, it's making me want to vomit!

Amy Lynn: Why you gotta be such a hater, Simone? Pierre and I are gonna wear our fleur de lys all we want, and you're just gonna be all alone hating!  In fact, Pierre just gave me these Mignon Faget earrings. All the ladies in New Orleans have them.

Simone: OMG, like, just, OMG!

Don't be a hater!

Until Next time, Merci Beaucoup,
Mademoiselle Love

jenée here: For our friends that have yet to make it to Louisiana and New Orleans, in particular, the fleur de lys is indeed a fashion statement here. It can be found on everything you can possibly think of from wearable fashion to home decor - to tattoos! Rather you find yourself in New Orleans or Paris, you will now know how to correctly pronounce this little fashion symbol.

Personally, I like to keep it discreet (unless I am going to a Saints game / party) and wear it as fine jewelry. Mignon Faget is a New Orleans staple and acquiring your first piece it is like an induction into the Ladies Society of NOLA.
Mignon Faget Fleur de Lys
Mignon Faget Fleur de Lys Pendant Necklace
Mignon Faget Fleur de Lys
Mignon Faget Fleur de Lys Ring

In my search for Fleur de Lys Jewelry, I came across Island Cowgirl Jewelry. I'm in love with this necklace. 
Island Cowgirl "Big Easy" Fleur de Lys Necklace

and since you know how much I love Vintage - here is a little Fleur de Lys throw back. As we all know, fashion is cyclical and what's old is new again. This chic is sporting Fleur de Lys all over - so GO ON AMY LYNN! 
Marie de Medici 

The Origin of "La Tasse de Café", French for "the cup of coffee"
Is a morning radio show out of Ville Platte, Louisiana on KVPI-FM
My dad listens to it regularly to keep up with his Cajun French as he now doesn't have much opportunity to speak it in Louisiana where the language is disappearing. 
Since I'm from Cajun land in Louisiana, with a serious interest in fashion and my friend, the author, a Louisiana girl too, who is head over heels in love with everything French and everything coffee, it was only fitting we pay tribute to our roots and our new found loves.

Tune in to KVPI every Monday, Wednesday and Friday morning at 8:45AM (NY time) for your Cajun French lesson and come back to the blog every Friday for more French lessons from Mademoiselle Love. We will discuss useful French  words or expressions for the fashionable girl. But to make it even more enjoyable, we will do it over a very fashionable cup of coffee.