Saturday, 28 June 2014

Postcard From Devon

We sneaked out of 'School' and high tailed it from Surrey all the way down to the beautiful Devon coast last week for a spot of spontaneous R&R. 
Those of you that have read The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry by Rachel Joyce will be familiar with the route into Salcombe via Kingsbridge, the very same road on which Harold began his 600 mile walk to reach his dear friend Queenie.
We checked into a delightful hotel overlooking Hope Cove for some traditional Devon hospitality.
I did have plans for paddleboarding, perhaps some kayaking and even a dip in the sea but ginormous full English breakfasts, teas with lashings of clotted cream and five course dinners put paid to anything other than lolloping along the beach, like a great big galoot.
I had to have a word with the seagull, who insisted on incessantly squawking outside my window at 6am the first morning but he soon disappeared, only to leave the gentle soundtrack of lapping waves in his wake.

  Click Images to Enlarge


Can you hear the silence? Isn't it bliss!....


Saturday, 21 June 2014

Grow London Garden Show

I've just returned home from the launch of the Grow London Contemporary Garden Show. The first of its kind in London, brought to us from the brains behind the Affordable Art Show. Exhibitors provided temptation at every turn ranging from a wonderful selection of plants to hardware, garden design to exterior furniture. The exhibition celebrates all things horticulturally modern with a soup├žon of traditional handcraft for the budding window box gardener right through to those with a little extra outdoor space within the metropolis.

Bronzino had a gorgeous selection of edgy containers. I have fallen for their copper riveted cauldrons. Contemporary exterior accessories and furniture company Barbed exhibited their stylish products. This rather smart hose reel would look great at Magical Manor.

I am always in awe of anything made by the human hand and watching Peter Dibble make his willow Basketry was quite mesmerizing. I have tried my hand at basketry before, lets just say I should leave it to the experts!

Having just been introduced to Sneeboer's hand-forged Dutch garden tools, I am now a convert. Local boutique, Judy Greens Garden Store had a gorgeous selection of pots. Some of her bud vases found their way into my shopping bag tout de suite.

Katie Wright AKA Blacksmith Munro showcased some of her magical designs. Her work is bringing a fresh modern twist if you pardon the pun, to the ancient craft of blacksmithing. We had a little natter and I am kicking myself now for not making a purchase. I feel a commission is in order.

Know as "The prettiest shop in the UK", Burford were on hand with a wide range of quirky hand selected products, beautiful plants and their infamous vintage Citroen Van. 

My posterior was firmly plonked on these rather cute pebble cushions from the Modern Garden Company after doing two loops of the show. They would look great in the garden in summer.

I love the movement of Rachel Ducker's wonderful windswept wire sculptures and can see how they would instantly transform a contemporary urban oasis.

The pinnacle of the show for me was to get to see Derry Watkins of Special plants who as per usual had the most incredible selection of perennials. I run into Derry from time to time at fairs up and down the country and love visiting her Wiltshire Nursery, never failing to leave empty handed. Unfortunately I was far too busy filling my giant shopping bag with her plants to take a picture but it was a great way to end the day.

There is still one day left to see the exhibition, so you better get growing.

The Contemporary Garden Fair
Fri 20th - Sun 22nd June 2014
Hampstead Heath

Friday, 20 June 2014

Home Sweet Scented Home

After taking myself off for a week of gallivanting around the countryside, I was delighted to see that the garden had prepared the most beautiful 'Welcome Home' for me when I arrived back this afternoon.

A new wave of roses had painted a glorious splash of romance throughout the garden. Great big voluminous blooms vied for my attention from every corner of the garden, requesting I clasp each of them with both hands in order to inhale the scent that they gift on such a balmy summer's afternoon.

Wasting no time, I reached for my trusty secateurs and ran around randomly snipping all whom called my name, so that they might join me inside, whilst I reclined in Friday pose, admiring their beauty.

From left to right....
Claire Austin, James Galway, Scepter'd Isle & Evelyn

With Roses as gorgeous as this, there really is no place like home.

Thursday, 12 June 2014

The Belgravia Wedding Quarter

The Belgravia Wedding Quarter held their Summer Showcase last night as part of the Elizabeth Street Summer Party. We were asked to set the space for the event held at The Grosvenor Stationery Company Boutique, by adding our trademark Magical touch. Yard upon yard of billowing organza, sparkling with a thousand twinkling lights seemed just the ticket and so the stage was set.
Exclusive luxury boutiques, ateliers and venues across Belgravia came to together to showcase their exquisite designs, highlighting why Belgravia really is such a unique Wedding shopping destination.


Dreamy Wedding gowns from Jenny Packham, gorgeous Floristry by Neill Strain, stylish Wedding Stationery by The Grosvenor Stationery Company, delicious edibles from Peggy Porschen, beautiful scents from Floris London, bespoke bridal hair by Errol Douglas and incredible jewellery from Elizabeth Gage and Vicky Sarge. Mosimanns and The Berkeley were also in attendance, along with a host of other talented Belgravia partners.

Naturally, there is only one place to go to now when organising your wedding.
Think of it as the new wedding planning mantra.
Four simple words, repeat them after me......The Belgravia Wedding Quarter

Saturday, 7 June 2014

Eyes on The Sky

As you might have noticed, I am a bit of a weather obsessive. It affects almost everything I do at work and play. If I'm out in the garden digging and planting, or in the woods shinning up trees, or even if I'm in town, clambering across the rooftop gardens of London, I find myself constantly scanning the horizon for the next inclement weather front.

So in a completely random offering, I wanted to share what I consider to be, the most wonderful image I captured of a gorgeous rainbow over the house, whilst I was out pottering in the garden. 

I had just enough time to grab my phone and take a picture as a plane flew right through the colours of the rainbow. With dramatic, bubbling skies serving as its backdrop, the arc also appears to land directly on the roof of the house.

How lucky to fly through the path of a rainbow. Isn't that just about as beautiful as it gets. Here's wishing you all a Magical weekend.

Right, enough daydreaming people. Back to work. Chop, chop! ;)

Tuesday, 3 June 2014

Busting Out All Over

I've been out in the gardens today, in my usual style, snip-snippety-snipping and a whistling away, pirouetting and a high kickin' through the borders, in search of the ultimate early summer treasure.
It may have been a little grey outside but we huff in the face of cloudy skies here at Magical Manor, for I had my eyes fixed on a prize that exudes it's very own illustrious sunshine.

After all the heavy rains, we have been gifted glorious waves of Technicolor gorgeousness this week. Armfuls upon armfuls of lush velvety roses with scents ranging from a citrus neroli to traditional old rose. I love to add them to vases as they come without over-fussing with them. The house is dotted with all manner of vases, urns, and receptacles, overflowing with these luscious beauties.

June certainly is bustin' out all over... so grab your petticoats and join in.

Now, where did I put my Sailor's hat.......