To This Woman, Her Flower Crowns Are Not Just Festival Accessories

credit: Gabriela Rangel

Historically, crowns have represented power, legitimacy, triumph and glory – all the attributes Gabriela Rangel wants the women who wear her headdresses to embrace.

Since 2015, the San Diego, Calif.-based Latina has been making and selling beautiful floral coronets through her Etsy shop, Crowned Republic. And for her, crowns are as much about aesthetics as they are politics.

“Over the years, I’ve seen my community continually disrespected, appropriated and watered down to just costumes, characters and trends. With these pieces, I want to say we are more than that. We are trailblazers. We are vibrant and diverse. We are intelligent. We are important, we are beauty and we are not going anywhere,” Rangel, 29, told mitú.

Crowned Republic’s slogan is “Be yourself, love yourself, crown yourself” and that’s exactly what Rangel strives to achieve with her crowns.

For Rangel, who is Colombian, Spanish, Filipino and Chinese, it’s crucial that her customers feel like their best selves when they’re sporting one of her colorful pieces on their heads.

To her, it’s only when we embrace ourselves, truly fall in love with who we are, that we can begin tapping into the power that lies inside of us. Crowns, as they’ve always been, are mere symbols of that poder.

“I want my customers to exude confidence, pride, joy and beauty from within. When you feel your best, you look your best,” she said. “… Female empowerment means being completely authentic to your own wants and desires. When you feel empowered, you go beyond the limitations society dictates acceptable.”

Her crowns are even inspired by strong, spirited women who understood their power and refused to minimize themselves, mujeres like Frida Kahlo, Celia Cruz, Selena, Sade, Aretha Franklin and Stevie Nicks.


Each piece is hand-crafted. Rangel purchases the flowers with her customers in mind and then designs the crowns by blending fabrics like silk, latex, cotton and velvet.


“My desire is for the wearer to have the utmost satisfaction with the piece because it’s what they deserve,” she said.

And they do. Among her happy customers are women across the U.S., Mexico, Brazil, Italy, France and Norway as well as celebrities like Goldie Hawn and Emily King.

“Frida Kahlo said she painted flowers so they wouldn’t die. I create crowns to remind women they are the CEO of their own lives. Don’t dim the light on your own uniqueness, embrace it.”

Women of color should be rewarded for taking the time to know themselves and fighting to adore who they are, and Rangel’s floral headpieces are a ravishing way to honor that journey to self-love.


READ: This Comic Perfectly Sums Up Why Frida Kahlo Is So F*cking Iconic

Let us know which crown is your favorite in the comments!