Poppy etiquette

How to wear the poppy appropriately

Poppies become a familiar sight in Canada in the month of November.

Wearing the poppy shows we care, but wearing it wrongly is inappropriate and disrespectful. So before heading to your Remembrance Day ceremony here are a few key things to keep in mind about poppy etiquette.

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Why wear a poppy?

Wearing the poppy indicates our gratitude and appreciation for the contributions made by the armed forces.

American woman Moina Michael started this tradition in 1918. In a response to John McCrae’s poem In Flanders Fields, she wrote We Shall Keep Faith.

When should you start wearing it?

People are encouraged to start wearing poppies from the last Friday of October.

Where to wear it?
Wear the poppy on the left side. Closest to the heart. A simple trick of adding a little rubber at the back of the pin can help secure the poppy.

What colour to wear?
The red poppy is the most popular one to wear.

“Between the crosses row on row,” a line in McCrae’s poem, implies how red poppies bloomed among the martyrs in battlefields.

When to stop wearing the poppy?

Many continue to wear the poppy throughout November. But it is recommended the poppy shouldn’t be worn past the ceremony.  This is because the poppy is meant to be left at memorial sites, or wreaths during the ceremony.