Welcome to the 25th Romantic Reverie, marking the start of our third year! I have so much to share from behind the scenes at French Bedroom (and yes, it’s all about Chelsea Flower Show!).
May was a month of bank holidays, which meant we lost three Mondays in the office, but we gained three more ‘Sundays’ with our loved ones, and the team are sporting some new freckles and suntans which is a joy to see after such a long winter.
As we head into June, I’m switching the usual Sunday Checklist with a few thoughts on how to make the most of a business as usual Monday, and why really, Monday is underrated and deserves a little more love.
Chelsea Flower Show
Saturday the 20th the team and I spent the day wallpapering, hanging skirts, picture rails and of course – a chandelier. The transformation won us an RHS award which is now proudly displayed in our office.
We were so excited for Monday to arrive so we could return to Chelsea and see all the gardens and trade stands finished. Mondays are exclusively for The Royal Family, VIP guests and of course, the press. For us, that meant unlimited, quiet access to the gardens which was a real treat. We saw Kate Middleton, in that Me+Em dress, Joanna Lumley and Judi Dench – all women we admire.
Falling For Florals
Nature is so impressive, the detail and intricacy of flowers. Chelsea Flower Show flowers, well they are something else. The depth of colours, the perfection of the natural structures and shapes is striking, art like, as if hand painted.
The creativity blew me away, so many talented craftswomen. One grower who really stood out was Zena Holloway, who has been weaving biodegradable wedding dresses (often a single-use garment) out of the roots of wheatgrass. She was inspired to create the sustainable material after spending years as an ocean photographer witnessing plastic pollution.
My personal highlight was walking through the David Austin roses. The smell of the roses, the colours, the texture, the variety in elegant, feminine shades instantly transported me to memories of my Grandmother, followed by inspiration of so many design ideas I had to take a quiet moment to let them all sink in. The Windsor Garden fabric we were wearing was inspired by David Austin roses, of which I have four varieties in my own garden in loving memory of my wonderful Grandmother. In my garden I have: Sceptre’d Isle® , Queen Of Sweden, Wisley 2008® and Gentle Hermione.
The Chelsea Pensioners admiring our stand described it as ‘dream like’ – I’d say that’s a job well done on our part. Thank you to my passionate, hard working team who worked tirelessly to make the event special for everyone we met. Our elegant furniture, my favourite Sanderson wallpaper, the custom made dresses, the ethereal sounds of the cello, it was a pinch me moment and a memory to treasure.
Finally, let’s talk about the dresses. The floaty cotton dresses in our exclusive Windsor Garden fabric with feminine smocking to suit every figure. Please send all dress enquiries here.
It was such a treat to meet our customers, friends and followers at Chelsea Flower Show, here are a few of the gorgeous women we met modelling their limited edition Chelsea Flower Show bags – we have a handful left, for you or to put away for gifting loved ones.
Whether you’re planning to get away on holiday, or simply spending time in the garden, I wish you a marvellous June. Don’t forget to keep an eye on our new in page, with Chelsea Flower Show successfully completed, our design team are working on launching some irresistible new goodies. Summer is always the season for lighter linens to replace your duvet, or wear over your shoulders once the sun fades on the terrace. I’ve already packed the Breton Stripe Wool Blanket in my suitcase!
This month we’re dedicating our Sunday discoveries to the wonderful women we met at Chelsea Flower Show.
The Peony Girl
The Peony Girl is fanatic about peonies; she grows them in her little English cottage garden, studies them and paints them. Fun and carefree, her paintings use pigments and ink on rice paper or silk, oil on canvas or plywood, or mixed media with all the available materials. They all celebrate the beauty of peony flowers (Paeonia) to create an aura of English Romance and Oriental Elegance. A collaboration between The Peony Girl and French Bedroom is simply written in the stars!
We also met Lynne head buyer at Jam Industries, stylish and friendly, we absolutely had to sample her carefully selected cashmere! Sourcing the softest wool and luxury cottons from around the world, Lynne is keeping you snug from coastal to city. Naturally, we picked stripes – and it looks rather cute with our limited edition bag.
BRUNCH WITH... ALICE
We were joined by Alice Lockwood- founder of World Secrets, a brand with sunshine soul for a Sunday sit down.
Describe your perfect Sunday
Wake up late, a sugary brunch with plenty of macarons! A stroll around the shops, finished off by reading one of the seven sisters’ books! …. But in a complete wonderland it would be a day’s skiing and a glass of wine with some friends!
What does ‘Me Time’ mean to you?
I’m pretty addicted to Greys Anatomy at the moment, so probably a few episodes of that!
What’s your preferred sleeping position?
Sandwiched in-between two sausage dogs, wrapped in a block print blanket!
How do you relax and unwind after a busy day?
Walk the dogs or the gym, followed by a game of Mario Kart. I think the nostalgia and the mindlessness of it makes me calm.
Colour is obviously very important to you. What are your favourite colours, and what memories or feelings do they trigger?
Yellow. It’s a warm, happy colour, you can’t help but smile when you see someone dressed in yellow! I think anything brightly coloured and beautiful patterns remind me of adventure and travelling, which is when I’m at my happiest.
If you could go back 10 years and give younger Alice some advice – what would it be?
Not to worry about the future, as long as you work hard, what is meant for you won’t pass.