Traditional Flower Tattoos
American traditional flower tattoos are some of the most widely recognized pieces, thanks to their highly saturated blocks of colors, simple 2D designs, and bold black outlines.
Traditional tattoos tend to have a more masculine appearance, but flowers add a feminine flair, slightly softening these bold images.
With each flower having its own specific meaning, the creative design options for these tattoos are endless and suitable for absolutely anyone.
Traditional Flower Tattoo Meanings
Florals are popular tattoo choices for their visual beauty and splendor, but they also provide innumerable meanings.
In general, flowers represent femininity, love, beauty, and growth.
However, every flower has a different meaning depending on its type, stage of growth, and color.
Traditional rose tattoos are as classic as you can get, while hibiscus tattoos are more unique and whimsical.
If you’re looking for a gentler, more ladylike flower, you might opt for peony tattoos, or for a constant, beaming reminder to be more optimistic, try sunflower tattoos.
Of course, every flower is obviously unique in its appearance, but also has its own list of symbolism.
Before you get your ink, make sure you know that specific flower’s commonly perceived meaning.
Main Themes in Traditional Flower Tattoos
Vibrant, bold, and unmatched in versatility and personal expression for any gender, traditional flower tattoos are all kinds of beautiful.
Here are some of the most widely recognized American traditional floral tattoos.
- Black and Grey Traditional Flower Tattoos
If you’re not the biggest fan of brightly colored tattoos, you can always opt for black and grey traditional flowers.
These tattoos may not be as lively as their colored counterparts, but they can be just as gorgeous and spectacular with more detail.
- Traditional Rose Tattoos
Rose tattoos are often an aspiring artist’s first challenge to tackle and one of the most in-demand traditional tattoos.
A classic symbol of love, passion, beauty, and romance, these flowers are regularly requested to show off a person’s loyalty and devotion.
With so many sub-styles and color options to alter meanings, traditional rose tattoos are easily personalized and flexible for nearly any part of the body.
- Traditional Sunflower Tattoos
Traditional sunflower tattoos obviously allude to optimism and positivity, with their sunny petals emitting a warm, golden outlook on life.
With their ability to soak up radiation and toxins they may also be used as a symbol of hope and longevity.
As a reminder to always look on the bright side, sunflower tattoos inspire happiness whether you already have a bubbly personality or are looking to draw positivity from your ink.
These flowers are an immaculate choice for a traditional tattoo, with the bright golden colors, shading, and bold lines making the image really pop against your skin.
- Traditional Peony Tattoos
Peonies are known for their multitude of ruffled petals providing large, gorgeous blossoms that are delicate for a traditional style.
For an old-school design with a feminine, romantic touch, peony tattoos are an exquisite choice.
Although they have various meanings across many cultures, they are typically known for being a symbol of beauty, abundance, and good fortune.
They can also represent life and longevity thanks to their ability to flower for years and years.
- Traditional Hibiscus Tattoos
These tropical blooms are not only gorgeous with their trumpet-like appearance, but also a symbol of beauty, femininity, love, and lust.
The meanings vary across cultures, with it symbolizing fame, prosperity, and wealth in China, but representing the perfect woman in North America.
The hibiscus is the official flower of Malaysia and also Hawaii’s state flower, so you may wish for hibiscus tattoos as a nod to Malaysian or Hawaiian roots.
The color of the hibiscus can have additional meaning as well:
- Yellow hibiscus tattoo: Friendship, happiness, good omens
- Red hibiscus tattoo: Passion, love, desire
- Purple hibiscus tattoo: Wealth, richness, regality
- Blue hibiscus tattoo: Fertility, calmness
- White hibiscus tattoo: Enlightenment, purity, innocence
- Pink hibiscus tattoo: Rare beauty, youth
- Traditional Lotus Tattoos
The lotus flower is another popular choice for tattoos, with the most commonly known meanings being self-control, relaxation, peace, enlightenment, regeneration, and spirituality.
For yoga lovers or followers of Buddhism, the petals in bloom represent opening up your heart or a spiritual awakening.
Another popular take on these flowers is the idea of resilience, overcoming obstacles, or finding beauty in the darkest of places, as the lotus grows in mud and blossoms into an astonishingly gorgeous plant.
- Traditional Poppy Tattoos
Popular amongst veterans, their family members, and significant others, poppies are often tattooed as a tribute to combat or soldiers lost to them and freedom.
However, they also were offerings for the past souls in ancient times, so they may signify the loss of a loved one, too.
- Traditional Mandala Flower Tattoos
In Sanskrit, mandala means “circle”, and thus, mandala flower tattoos consist of overlapping circles of florals or a series of shapes forming a flower.
These visually pleasing, inspiring pieces often represent wholeness or the blossoming of life.
The most popular choice for this type of tattoo is a lotus, although you could incorporate virtually any flower into this design.
Because of their geometric nature, you should avoid placing these tattoos in an area with folds that can distort the shape.
The back along the spine, inner limb, forearm, or low chest are great options for placement.
- Traditional Hand Holding Flower Tattoos
A traditional hand-holding flower tattoo is often used to provide the wearer with guidance or encouragement.
These tattoos are captivating while also enhancing the meaning behind them, commemorating a special bond or connection, or even a reminder to hold onto something.
For instance, a hand holding a rose could signify you offering your love to someone, or holding a lotus could represent you trying to hang onto your innocence or inner peace.
While a hand holding a flower is usually a tribute to a loved one or symbolizes an offering, a skeleton hand can represent eternal beauty or impermanency of life and love at the same time.
- Traditional Flower Vase Tattoos
Another twist on traditional flower tattoos is to place the flowers in a vase and increase the meaning that much more.
The vase tames the wildness of the flowers while being a work of art all on its own.
It may just be a decorative vessel or a memento for a certain place or person, or you could add a chip or crack in it to represent imperfection or a broken relationship – the possibilities are endless.
- Traditional Flower Bouquet Tattoos
If you’re unable to decide on just one flower, you might opt for an entire bouquet with various shapes and sizes of florals.
This gives you the opportunity to choose multiple flowers with various meanings and contrasting appearances for a beautiful, unique tattoo with significant personal connections.
These tattoos can range from a tiny finger tattoo to a humungous back piece, thanks to their incredible versatility.
Here are the most popular places to put these stunning tattoos.
- Traditional Flower Hand Tattoos
As one of the most famous spots for your traditional flower, you can go as delicate or as detailed as you please.
Some opt for a single, long-stemmed rose on the palm or side of the hand, while others may wish to cover the entire back of the hand with a large, blossomed peony.
Regardless of your choice, it is sure to make a powerful statement when placed here.
- Traditional Flower Elbow Tattoos
Floral tattoos are lovely on either side of the elbow, whether you wish to have the center of the flower in the indent of the joint or popping out of the middle of the bony exterior.
Perfect for circular designs especially, the elbow is a great spot for a flower on its own or to build up a sleeve.
- Traditional Flower Knee Tattoos
Adding an extra symbol of beauty and pain to your ink, knees are known for being sensitive and one of the more painful spots to get a tattoo.
With that said, they are also a fabulous place to show off your ink, with traditional flowers fitting perfectly on the circular area.
Knee tattoos also provide the opportunity to expand up or down the leg if you’re looking for a larger-than-life piece.
- Traditional Flower Wrist Tattoos
Small tattoos are great introductions to tattooing if you’ve never been inked before, with the wrist providing a relatively painless spot for a little traditional flower.
Because of their boldness, traditional tattoos will look fantastic here regardless of their size.
- Traditional Flower Shoulder Tattoos
The shoulder is one of the best spots for a larger image that can be expanded in any direction.
If you’re looking to start a sleeve with several florals or plan to stick to just one flower, this area is a relatively painless location.
Traditional Flower Tattoo Designs
For further imagery and inspiration, take a look at more traditional flower tattoo designs.
Although these tattoos may seem simple at first glance, they attract attention with their striking appearances.
For anyone enthusiastic about classic American tattoos, flowers make for beautiful artworks with endless design options and symbolism.
Supplying an ideal mix of femininity and attitude, American traditional flower tattoos will never go out of style.
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