Gone Sailing

If you are reading this, than we have done it.

Escaped the madness of the wedding season for a few days, and made passage to the high seas.

The Hound, not in possession of any sea legs, has decided to stay and partake in the hospitality offered by a black greyhound.

I fear mischief.

Back on Thursday, for a catch up.



4 years

4 years ago today I rescued The Hound.

If truth be told, he rescued me.


Introducing the Stamford Hen

Chief foliage supplier.

Collector of kitchenalia.

Owner of an English garden

and a garden gnome.


A country christening

Like a wedding but without buttonholes, or bouquets, or a bride and groom. so nothing like a wedding really, but it was in a marquee.

and there were flowers in the church an urn of delphiniums and hydrangea, and the daintiest sea holly.
I don't have a photograph of this, the whys and wherefores of churches are sometimes beyond me, should an anonymous post appear about working in churches one day.....

There were flowers on the huge gates as well, but the sun was in the wrong place, and they haven't come out well. Damn.

If you are thinking about tying ribbon onto pails, do it before you load up with oasis and fleurs - yes it seems obvious now doesn't it. Also ribbon and metal pail do not like one another you will need a lot of floral tack.

This morning i have finished a funeral, hatches, matches, and dispatches all in the course of 3 days.

Floristry is as much about people skills as it is about floral ones.


The best things come in small packages

A wedding for 24.

The coolest couple.

I like weddings where everyone sits on the same table.

Much less political.

I am so behind on tomorrows big christening, scarily behind.

I did put the chairs back neatly, it's hard to stretch over glassware to put flowers in place. One of the perils of the job.


The recipe or Why it only takes ten minutes, or Don't hit publish before you finish your post.

1. Select a suitable vintage plate to serve it upon. This takes the majority of the 10 minutes.
2.You can of course slave for hours making the perfect pastry, or you can let the dear folks at Waitrose do it for you.
3. Beat together 1 tub of Marscapone, 1 tub of full fat soft cheese, a dollop of icing sugar, vanilla extract and the zest of a lemon.
4. Tip into tart and make fancy with a spatula.
5. Choose a selection of over-priced, over packaged soft fruit.
6. Scatter.
7. Dust with icing sugar, it hides a multitude of sins.

Do you declare the pastry case to be purchased or not? It depends
on whether the other guest that brought a pudding (home grown gooseberry fool) is a Cordon-bleu cook or not.

Just smile when people comment on how perfect your pastry looks.

A Tart in Ten minutes



All white marquee + pink flowers + crystal balls = glamour.


I suppose it depends on whether you are left or right handed.

This morning i woke up at 4.30am and shouted an expletive.
"What day is it?"
"Should i be at a marquee?"

I was assured as it was a Tuesday, and whilst not improbable, the chances of there being a wedding today were slim.

I need somebody to put their foot between my shoulder blades and pull my arms back. It's the only thing that works, try it.

All i have eaten is tinned mackerel. I am addicted. Slice of sourdough, an avocado and a tin of the good stuff. I am trying to cut down to 2 a day.

The Hound has even given up vying for my attention and goes to hang out Chez Mother Hen or at Princess Pooch.

I am not complaining, i love the wedding season.

I did escape to London on Sunday, I escorted flowers to a photo shoot, and then spent a wonderful afternoon eating roast turbot, and strolling the streets of W11 whilst eating pistachio ice cream, and all in the most marvellous of company.

The sun was shining and all the streets kept whispering "come home".

I shall bring you weddings later, and tonight i might cook something other than mackerel - we are a bit lacking in food photographs are we not?

What is going on in your worlds?



Check Spelling

I don't really know what a Tumblr page is, but this one i have been reading for a long long time, and i love it.

Makes a nice change from flowers no?


Coloured table linen

is money better spent than chair covers.

That is my top tip of the day.

But only if you go for the nice chairs.

and you get the table linen from somewhere tres bon


The moment I wake up

before i put on my make-up,

I say a little prayer for you.

When a gospel choir sings this at the church, you know this was no ordinary wedding.

Yes that is gypsophilia.

There is more.

Contain yourselves.

Keeping it simple

Even though i am surrounded by flowers all day, everyday, i still love them at home.

1. A rather insipid rose whilst in the garden, but better on my desk
2. Sweetpeas by the bed
3. Alchemilla - who knew it could be so contentious

It wasn't a home win, Mr Hamilton came second, but retains his lead. Much entertainment being given by the politics at Red Bull.

Also if your set your alarm for 3.30am for the morning of a wedding, be sure to turn it off when you wish for a lie-in the next day. Advice i wish somebody had given me last night.

I shall bring the result of our efforts tomorrow.


Flowers for a wedding

These are the colours we using this week for the wedding.

Why do The Dutch put babies on their packaging?

Avalanche, majolica, Quicksand, hydrangea, Duchess de Nemour peony, Avalanche nature.

Nothing is local.


Easton Walled Gardens

It is true what they say, that you never do the things on your own doorstep.

Until Sunday i had never been to Easton Walled Gardens.

They are the "lost" gardens, lying undisturbed to be overtaken by brambles for 50 years. Quite how anyone can lose anything which is clearly sign posted from the A1 is anybody's business.

They are being restored to their former glory, the beautiful house was pulled down in the 50's, as they were inclined to do then. Heart breaking, visit the history room, for amazing photographs of how it looked, and the transformation of the gardens.

It is a sort of "keep on the grass" garden, we went for the end of sweet pea week, where secateurs are provided to pick one's own.

I became a friend of the gardens, so you can expect to hear a lot more about it, and if ever i saw a garden more perfect for a photo shoot......

and they do tea, and cake, and they sell plants.


In the shop today

Arrangements without delphiniums.

Gypsophilia, but oh why does it smell so?

The workbench is cluttered with odds and ends of oasis.

Lunch of cold roast lamb, homegrown lettuce and tahini dressing, and a sprinkle of seeds. The next 2 weeks are frantic, i am trying to eat for vitality or something.

This weekends wedding is being photographed by Polly Alexandre she still uses film, and trained with Jose Villa I am beside myself. If you click on Polly's link, just be warned the first blog post you will see is amazing, but a little risque in parts. If you are a little prudish, best leave it be.

The Hound is well, he is doing a marvellous job of banking sleep in preparation for the end of the week, and he has been booked into Princess Pooch for his shampoo and set.

Did you all have a bon weekend? Did you see the sweetpeas at Easton Walled Gardens? We did, i shall post pictures later.

Also after i took the picture of the flowers, i went back and rammed a peony in the bit where there should have been one.