Do-It-Yourself Flower Power

Last week we published a story on the origins of the term ‘flower power’ by Lucy Kaldor. During her research Lucy stumbled across this rather different interpretation of the term by the Australian Womens Weekly in 1968. It’s cringe-worthy. It’s also indicative of the relationship between women and power in the 1960’s. If you want to stencil flowers on your body, this is your story. But ladies (and men), please, do it for yourself, not as the writer suggests, to ‘bloom your way into any mans heart’.

The Australian Women’s Weekly
January 10th 1968

Turn on the “flower power” with these sugar-and-spice niceties, and bloom your way into any man’s heart.

You can create a dainty, butterflied cheek for those romantic evenings, or blossom down to the beach with a delicately painted leg. A perky strawberry above your knee would look delicious.

There’s no need to worry if your artistic talent stops at applying make-up – all the work has been done for you.

Just cut out the motif you see here (leaving an inch of white space all round), glue on to thin cardboard – and, when dry, cut out the centre shape.

Attach with transparent tape – lightly – to the area you want decorated, then paint in the cut-out space.

When you’ve painted the basic shape, let your imagination run riot. Add vibrant splashes of color to the butterflies, an arrow to the heart, spot the strawberry, or pretty up the flowers.

For best results use the new body-paint and color kit which is smear proof and waterproof (ask at chemists or store cosmetic counters), and for any extra colors, lipstick and waterproof eye-liner work wonders.

But, if your budget doesn’t run to such luxuries, economise with lead-free poster paints. These can work almost as well – if you don’t go in swimming or wear your motif under a stockinged leg.

So don’t be a wilted beach belle any longer, or an insignificant wallflower at that important party.

Go ahead and paint yourself pretty. And. please, don’t forget those smooth-shaven legs.

Story: Margaret Ann Randal
Picture: Don Cameron

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