Say It With Flowers, But Make It Queer

The Queer Language of Flowers is now available on Etsy!

The Queer Language of Flowers 1
Image of The Queer Language of Flowers Zine on a floral backdrop with green carnations. The zine cover is maroon and green and features two dandies sitting on a divan together. The dandy on the left has short hair and is wearing a jacket, vest, and knee breeches; the one on the right has on a double-breasted jacket, trousers, and green heels.

What was up with Oscar Wilde and green carnations? How can you tell someone you’ve got a Sapphic crush on them? Before there was 1-800-Flowers’s “say it with flowers” campaign, there were flower dictionaries that explained how to send messages to friends and lovers with flowers. While 19th century flower dictionaries focus on heteronormative romance, floriography—and sending coded messages—is hella queer. Queer-coding (in the sense of LGBTQIA+ folks sending secret messages to each other on purpose) ensures our survival but also can be a source of resilience and even joy.

Green Carnation from The Queer Language of Flowers Zine
Image of the green carnations entry of the zine. The left side is the text about green carnations (not legible in this photo) and the right features drawings of carnations and their leaves and stems. There is a green carnation on top of the open zine.


The zine covers 16 flowers, including different colors of flowers, and two floral arrangements, as well as 16 illustrations and a place for you to add your own flowers. The Queer Language of Flowers is our most ambitious work to date and has a little something for everyone: detailed botanical drawings, history lessons with citations and sources so you can read more, an aesthetic risograph cover, suggestions on how to use the flowers to send messages, and even a love story woven into the text.

– Risograph printed by Paper Press Punch in Seattle, WA.
– 8.5 x 5.5 inches.
-44 pages

Buy it on Etsy as well as through our distributors Emerald Comics Distro (mostly Seattle/Tacoma comic shops) and Microcosm Publishing (Portland OR), and through our printer Paper Press Punch at select events. Use the hashtag #queerlanguageofflowerszine on social media (especially Twitter and Instagram) if you post about the zine! (For any review purposes, both Robin and I use they/them pronouns and are bisexual.)


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