A weekend

Cups of tea drunk: 57
Glasses of gin drunk: 4
Roses cut from the garden: 1
Blackberry Clafoutis made and eaten: 1
Pet superstores visited: 1
Cold and flu remedy taken: Dose exceeded
Outfits purchased for the wedding: 0
Episodes of Sex and the City watched: too many
Vintage cameras cursed at: 18
Number of times "film is dead" shouted: 5
120 rolls used: 3, fingers crossed
Peppers roasted with anchovies and cherry tomatoes: 3
Chicken dishes cooked with Spanish black pudding from sultry Spanish man on the farmers market: 1
Number of men reprimanded for asking if it was chicken with baked beans: 1
Grand Prixs watched: 1
Number of birthdays today: 1, Happy Birthday Bert xx


How to: Utilitarian chic

I am loving tea towels wrapped around jam jars and filled with peonies.

and wrapped around pots of salvia.

and tied up with string.
You can use them as table centres or give them as gifts. A plant and a tea towel. It is the gift that keeps on giving.

It is a Bank holiday here, and memorial weekend in the US too. I once spent memorial day weekend in Las Vegas.

Other little things that you might like to do over the weekend.

Make these amazing garlands
Make elderflower fritters
Watch puppies all day long.
Eat cheese.
Immerse yourself in the glamour of Monaco and F1.
Go to the Game fair at Burghley
Buy plants from Easton Walled Gardens
Put some 120 film in 1 of the 48 old cameras you own.
Drink gin.
Watch black and white movies.

I might do all of these things, especially the puppies.

Whatever you do, have a marvellous time. Shall we rendez-vous next week and compare notes?

p.s. the tea towels were from Wilkinson's sale bin 10p each. This was the inspiration for this How to.


What inspires you?

A question from a journalist. The worst sort of question.

You are going to sound either pretentious or idiotic no matter what you answer.

I don't know what inspires me, i do know what makes my heart lurch (coral charm peonies) or that moment when a boy rings and just before you answer you see his name on the screen. I know what makes me clap my hands and squeal, and do a little jump, most things, I am incorrigible. I also know what makes my blood boil, or what makes me turn my nose up in a "have it taken from my sight immediately sort of a way"

Quite how any of this manifests in anything creative i do, is beyond me.

That's why i always use the line, "my inspiration comes from the flowers themselves", that has everybody reaching for the sick bag.

When brides book in for a consultation i ask them to bring with them anything that inspires them, and their wedding breakfast menu.

The menu is just because i like food, and i am inherently nosey.

Things that i like at the moment
1. Customers who buy old cameras and then actually put film in them and make a picture.
2. Polaroid greetings cards
3. Tomatoes
4. It is summer, i am once again all about the 4711.

Answers on what is currently inspiring you in the comments section if you please


This much i know

If you make anything in white and green somebody somewhere will say the words "just like the Royal Wedding"

In London you can buy French newspapers everywhere, i miss that.

Garfunkel's and Aberdeen Angus Steak houses still exist, ans people still eat in them.

Science corner has got so out of control it has been sent to the window.

and made room for Pinky and Perky.

Polpo in Soho is a good place for lunch, particularly if you are lunching with Polly and Miranda. Good times.

It really isn't worth blow drying your hair if it is blowing a force 10 gale. Birds nest is inevitable.

I have never wanted sleek straight hair more than i did at yesterday's lunch.

is a good place to go with a man and a dog.

McLaren are advancing on Red bull's pace.

I remember Jelly bags the first time around, i am officially old.

did you learn much this weekend?


Does size matter?

Lapel man has returned to model some more buttonholes for us, and answer the eternal question, does size matter?

Nobody wants their beau to look like a clown, but nor would you want him in something insignificant. Particularly if he is of beefcake proportions.

1.Peonies, come in many sizes and not all varieties are suitable, but i love them as buttonholes, teamed with geranium leaves. Joy.

2.A single delphinium flower and contrast ribbon. Statement enough for any chap.

3.Love-in-a-mist and rosemary, Lapel man declared this to be a bit hippy for his tastes, but i like it.

4.Scabiosa and mint and string on long stems, balances out a small head. flower head, not man's head.

5.Hydrangea. This is clown territory. Stay away.

Also if you ever pin a gerbera on your man, we will never be friends. Ever.

Whilst we are on the subject, longevity in a buttonhole is overrated.

Most boys wear it on their jacket, and wear their jacket for the ceremony, photos, and then take off jacket. So if you want to use something very delicate, use it, and if it lasts until the first dance, brilliant, and if it doesn't does it matter? and don't ever use a florist that makes them the night before. Getting up at 4am to make buttonholes is what you pay us for.

In the war of aesthetic Vs. longevity, always choose aesthetic.

Bon weekend folks, do you have fun things planned? Are you watching the grand prix? I have this song on repeat, practicing the tango.


Wear peonies in your hair

Sometimes when we are conditioning flowers we accidentally on purpose snap a head or 3. And as there is generally an alice band and a couple of wires lying around, make headbands with the damaged goods. Do you remember all those how to's last year?

1. I am all about the curly hair this week, accessorised with peonies and delphinium flowers.
2. Utter beguiling
3. Ghislaine untangled my chains
4. Science corner is out of control, we are now an educational resource. Coach parties welcome.

and yes i am the sort of florist that wears DVF wrap dresses, red lipstick and red nail polish. I am allergic to fleece, polo shirts and bare lips. Even when it is very cold, with modern fabrics being what they are, there is no reason for anyone to ever have to wear fleece.

and as for the nail polish? My dear florist friends an amazing thing has been developed it is gel polish, not like those gel nails, just polish. 2 weeks of weddings, funerals, chasing after The Hound and a bit of gardening not a single chip. I had them done at Equilibrium next door, they have also just got the fish for pedicures.

I am not ready for the fish.

Whilst we are o the subject i am going to a wedding, the dress code is flowers in your hair and flip flops.
My area of expertise is shoes of a slutty nature, I am out of my comfort zone. Has anybody seen any amazing flip flops?

Do you have a science corner? Would you like to buy mine? Then i can buy something else to photograph.
Merci beaucoup.



When a bride first makes contact it is normally by email, they enquire about the availability of the date, and a brief of the types of flowers they are looking for.

Yesterday i received this brief

"Something gardeny and wild. Something that looks like you would lie in it playing scrabble and having outdoor sex. I like those kind of flowers."

Who doesn't?

Personally I favour backgammon, or Connect 4.

Photographs of recent weddings, that cake smelt so delicious, chcocolate and jasmine trails makes for a seductive combination.


Lot 137

Yesterday an auction.

I have returned with treasure.

Medicine and science bottles. Perfect for science corner, and maybe the odd bloom.

Ceramic hanging planters, quite the most exquisite things, although what to plant? Maybe a succulent, or an air plant? Anything floral might be a bit twee do you think?

They will be hanging once I have untangled the chains. The job of chief untangler is open to anyone, come and spend awhile amidst our plentiful charms. Please, i derive no satisifaction from untangling, i dont have the patience.

and then 150 plates of Victorian Natural history engravings. I spent a large proportion of my school life learning anatomy and Kingdoms and classes, i can remember very little.

Seemingly i can remember every word of a Take That song, or the script to Pretty Woman or Bridget Jones.

I would have stayed for two thousand.

I would have paid four.

My brain works in the most ridiculous way.