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How Pampas Grass Went From A Swingers’ Staple To Must Have Décor

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How Pampas Grass Went From A Swingers’ Staple To Must Have Décor

Every time we head to a friend's house or scroll Instagram for interior inspo, there it is, standing proudly in a vase. Pampas grass.

The tall, fluffy plant has had a bit of a renaissance in more recent years, having established as the new beau of all those house-proud.

Pampas grass is now a popular indoor plant (Credit: Pexels)
Pampas grass is now a popular indoor plant (Credit: Pexels)

The newfound popularity comes from the rise of influencers and celebrities showing off their pampas grass in the background of snaps posted on social media, posing alongside the plant in their enviably curated homes.

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But pampas grass wasn't always a symbol of being finely in tune with recent home décor trends. In fact, previously having pampas grass growing outside meant something quite different entirely.

"Pampas grass was initially popular in the 70's," Head florist at Amaranté London, Maria Kourris, tells Tyla. "It ties in with the 1970's psychedelic summer of love. Pampas grass was most associated with swingers as having them grow outside the porch was an indicator of sexual liberation and curiosity, and was an invitation of such."

The flower is popular with millennials and Gen Z (Credit: Pexels)
The flower is popular with millennials and Gen Z (Credit: Pexels)

Unsurprisingly, the then-infamous connotations of the plant saw pampas grass rapidly fall out of favour amongst those outside the swinging community.

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It's only fairly recently that pampas grass has had a sudden resurgence in our homes, with Zoe Warren, interior designer at PriceYourJob.com, attributing this to the influence of celebrity BFFs Stacey Solomon and Mrs Hinch.

"They're both fans of the ornamental plant," she explains. "Mrs Hinch, in particular, incorporates the plant into home décor, as it looks great and requires very little maintenance."

Other designers also put the plant's popularity down to millennials and Gen Z decorators who are simply too young to remember pampas grass was once a subtle but definite indicator of being sexually liberated.

"A younger generation that may not be aware of the connotations with pampas," Xander Shreenan, interior designer at Dowsing & Reynolds, explains.

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Pampas grass used to be associated with swingers (Credit: Pexels)
Pampas grass used to be associated with swingers (Credit: Pexels)

"Not only is pampas grass easy to maintain and keep, it's an eco-friendly addition to the home which seems to be at the forefront of its gained popularity."

Indeed, dried flowers are considered more chic than fresh florals, as they last longer and are less wasteful.

"In an age where everything seems to be fast paced, getting fresh flowers in each week can quickly become a chore. So preserved and dried stems are a great alternative," Xander says.

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"Not only are they virtually maintenance-free, they're a much greener option as waste is reduced."

Pampas grass's neutral colouring and soft texture makes it great for home decor (Credit: Pexels)
Pampas grass's neutral colouring and soft texture makes it great for home decor (Credit: Pexels)

Meanwhile, the resurgence of mid-century interior design may also be a reason for the popularity of pampas grass.

"Pampas is uniquely tall and striking and has a different soft, airy, natural texture to the fresh flowers you are used to," Maria says.

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"Using Pampas makes it easy to bring the softness of nature into the home. Its neutral tone makes it extremely versatile and can be paired with many different colours so you can pair with other flowers."

And the best way to decorate this plant is to emphasise its striking appearance, yet soft texture.

"Keep the Pampas Grass as tall as possible and place them in a tall floor standing vase, creating a feature in parts of your home by letting them spread out," Maria says. "The vase and the height will make the statement."

Featured Image Credit: Instagram - danidyer/Unsplash

Topics: Home, Home Decor, Interiors, Style

Kimberley Bond
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