Around 1850, the rosette was modestly redesigned
and miniaturized so that it could be worn on clothing in a manner more
appropriate for civilian use.
In 1877, the Military Order of the Loyal Legion of the United States became the first organization in the U.S. to use a lapel rosette to identify its
Today, lapel rosettes are awarded to, and worn proudly by, members of various types of organizations in both public and private sectors. They are
presented as a symbol of achievement, or in recognition of an individual’s allegiance or affiliation to a particular organization.
1-On a Full size/ mini- Medal to distinguish
the ranking within that Award/Class Medal
2-On a Ribbon bar to take the place of the Medal, [1 and 2 use a thread/string to attach to the Medal drape/ribbon bar]
3-A Rosette made to be worn on civilian clothing [Button hole, clutch back] to symbolize its Military Award/Medal
or else its Civilian Award/Medal without the wearing of the Award/Medal itself.
The term comes from the Old French rosette as a diminutive for “rose.”
As far back as 1790, English speakers were referring to rose shaped bunches
of ribbons as rosettes. These rosettes were often purely ornamental, denoting
no particular honors or recognition, as is still the case with some modern
rosettes. The use of rosettes in honors appears to have begun around 1802
with Napoleon and the Legion of Honor.
The circular bowknot [Rosette] (a circular construction of ribbon) dates from 1802, when it was first presented with the Legion of Honor. It was initially presented with the medal so that honorees would have something to wear when wearing a medal might not be appropriate. The bowknot started out quite large, and shrank down to be a more manageable size by 1850. When protocol precludes the wearing of medals, honorees with bowknots can wear their rosettes. In some cases, the bowknot may be pinned to the medal's ribbon at the time of presentation.
Rosettes are ornamental devices made from ribbon which is pleated or crimped to form a shape which suggests a flower. Often, a rosette may be decorated with trailing ribbons as well. Numerous governments and organizations give out rosettes to recognize significant achievements, ranging from taking first place in a horse show to being injured in combat.
A rosette's colors and pattern may discreetly reveal whether the wearer's forebears landed in America with the Pilgrims (pink and white, the Mayflower Society), whether an ancestor was an officer in the Continental Army (pale blue and white, the Society of the Cincinnati) or whether he is descended from one of the 25 nobles who, in 1215, forced King John to sign Magna Carta (crimson and yellow, the Baronial Order of Magna Carta). Other rosettes may indicate membership in the Brook Club in Manhattan, support for the Christian Broadcasting Network or generosity to the United Way.
Typically, silk and satin are used to make rosettes, although silk rosettes are more traditional. These glossy textiles can give rosettes a living look and feel as they reflect light. The ribbons used can be any color or combination of colors, although specific colors have certain meanings. These meanings change from nation to nation, especially with military medals, which can lead to confusion. In some cases, a space may be left in the middle of the rosette, so that honors can be written out or printed. If trailing ribbons are included, they are usually color coordinated with the primary rosette.
People who have received rosettes as part of honors or awards can
wear or display them. Many people wear the rosettes when they are awarded,
and move them to a display case along with other mementos afterwards. Typically,
military honors may be worn at formal occasions, while rosettes given out
as prizes are generally not worn. Ornamental rosettes are usually significantly
smaller than those awarded for honors, and they are often sewn into garments.