• The Ukrainian floral crown, or vinok, has become a symbol of national pride. (Facebook/Treti Pivni (Facebook/Treti Pivni )
Bring back the 'vinoks': These floral headdresses, traditionally worn by young, unmarried Ukrainian women, are making a comeback as a way to celebrate national identity.
By
Alyssa Braithwaite

1 Nov 2016 - 1:15 PM  UPDATED 1 Nov 2016 - 1:31 PM

Snapchat has made digital flower crowns a pop culture trend, but in Ukraine floral headdresses have long been a tradition.

Known as vinoks, they were historically worn by young, unmarried women to signify that they were "pure" and ready for marriage.

"In both Ukraine and Russia, both spouses-to-be would wear crowns during the wedding ceremony, apparently continuing an ancient tradition from Byzantium," Professor Alexander Mihailovic, who teaches at Bennington College and specializes in Slavic Literature, told Vogue.

"Ukraine has preserved the original Greek and Byzantine tradition of wedding head wreaths. However, in Ukraine there is yet another tradition, of young unmarried women wearing the wreaths during the spring, which, I suspect, explains why female dancers in Ukrainian folk dances wear floral crowns, whereas their Russian counterparts generally do not.

"The latter practice in Ukraine of wearing the wreath is meant to signal the purity of a young woman before marriage."

Now a group of stylists and photographers who call themselves Treti Pivni (which means Third Rooster) have decided to bring back the vinok as a way of celebrating Ukrainian culture and identity and "the beauty of authentic attire".  

Their portraits of modern women and children wearing the traditional Ukrainian headdresses as a symbol of national pride are attracting many admirers on social media, where the group share their work.

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