Floral thrones, of course

Prepare to be amazed. And potentially a little bit bemused. This post will show you flower arranging at its greatest, quite where the inspiration comes for these fabulous creations I’m not sure, but it was great to wander amongst them and admire them in the Pavilion at last year’s Chelsea Flower Show.

A row of floral thrones at the 2018 chelsea flower show
hearts and crowns on this floral throne from RHS Chelsea 2018

I like the yellows and purples of the one above, as well as its heart-shaped addition at the top of the back. Imagine if you were to sit on this (and I’m not sure I’d advise that) the heart would be just above your crown, because of course you’d have to be wearing a crown, wouldn’t you? In fact the one below, has an evergreen crown woven into its bold design.

bright yellows, oranges and pinks on this floral throne at rhs chelsea

What is amazing is the variations among them. The flamboyance and the variety of colours and approaches used. The one below has a more practical solution for its occupant to avoid a flower squishing situation, although I’m not convinced it would be any more comfortable.

pink flowers of almost every type in this floral throne

I remember being amazed at the number of entries, and while the theme was floral thrones, the armchair version was a favourite.

More of an armchair covered in flowers than a throne
A canopied throne at the Chelsea Flower Show

The canopied version was much more regal, and I loved the colours of its flowers.

Pastel blooms for the final floral throne from last year's chelsea flower show

And it just goes to show that with a few logs from the garden and plenty of imagination, we all could have something just as spectacular, although in my case I think I’d settle for colourful as I’m not sure I could match any of this magnificence.

Hands up, whose garden will be supporting a floral throne this summer?

The Grow Your Own Garden at the Ideal Home Show

This was one of the garden room sets that I’ve already said I was keen on, and the keen amongst you will realise that that’s because of my penchant for growing my own, but also for the geometric print rug, which is reminiscent of the cushions in my conservatory, and made from recycled plastic straws. But there’s another reason and it’s mostly how four crates have been fastened together to create a good looking and functional table. I’m forever saying I need a small low height garden table, mostly for my gin and tonic, and while this isn’t exactly what I’m after (it’s a little on the large side) I do admire its design.

Crates joined together to make a stylish table.jpg

The garden focuses on sustainability as well as the grow your own element. It shows ways of using your garden space making use of the latest Gardena technology, as well as featuring sustainable designs with items from the decking to the furniture made from recycled plastic bottles, milk cartons and tyres.

Decking, a rug and somewhere to sit.jpg

Which means, that everything might not necessarily be what it seems.

As well as the funky crate table on castors, I’m also quite taken with the raised, slatted looking planter at the rear of the picture above. The vertical struts provide extra growing space, for what looks like herbs, as well as looking stylish. It’s a bit too tall to have alongside my greenhouse - it’d block too much light - but otherwise I think I’d be tempted to look into recreating these raised beds by made from sustainable British timber.

Even the classic shaped Adirondack chairs, another long term favourite, are made from recycled plastic bottles. Which makes a lot more sense - they’re by Polywood if you’re also interested.

Plants in containers

There were plenty of herbs in this garden - as well as the rhubarb amongst the hydrangeas above in planters made from old car tyres - and herbs are no bad thing. They’re great for flavouring food and are a good substitute for salt, as that’s something else that we all more than likely need to cut down on.

Somewhere to rest your garden tools
A cold frame for seedlings

The final thing that caught my eye was this planter full of unruly peas, who look as if they’re arguing with each other about climbing up the cane supports.

Using a milk churn as a planter for sweet peas

On closer inspection the container is a milk churn, which is another way to reuse an container and to introduce some charm to your garden at the same time. It’s one of those garden spaces that has plenty going on, and much of which you don’t spot on first look.

What do you think, are there elements you’d have in your garden?

Big Ideas: An Oriental spa bathroom

This bathroom definitely has the wow factor, and while I’m not usually drawn to Oriental decor I’d happily make an exception for a bathroom like this. I’m not sure I’d spend much time anywhere else though. It’s a very well put together roomset, but has one element that i think is completely impractical, no matter how pretty it looks. I think you’ll spot what I mean fairly quickly…

The Big Ideas for this bathroom are:

  1. A sunken fish tank - yeap - the impractical element. It does provide a focal point, but most of us only have an indoor water feature when something’s leaking, right?

  2. Japanese screens: the frosted screens provide diffused light, and their sliding design would also work well to divide a room.

  3. A modern bath: another standalone bath, and a shape that works for me. I’m much more of a simple clean lines kind of girl, rather than the fancy, twirly approach.

  4. Zoned floor: it works here, I think because the space is big enough. In a smaller space I’m not sure it would have quite the same impact.

  5. The white suite: I’m in the “why would you have another colour suite” gang, but then again I’ve replaced a couple of avocado baths…

A touch of the orient in this big ideas room set at the Ideal Home Show

I like the flowers in the sunken stream, but I’m clumsy enough to fall into it regularly. So even if it was feasible, I’m still not convinced on the practical side. And don’t even mention pets or children. Or coming home a little bit tiddly.

That bath, that screen  - pure gorgeousness

I do love the screen though, isn’t it fabulous? Although I think I’d need the bath facing the other way so I could spend my time in the tub imagining the fish swimming about, how relaxing would that be?

A bathroom that exudes calm at the ideal home show

The other thing that’s pleasing is the grouting and its straight lines, which are also calming and another thing to let your eye wander over while relaxing. I know that sometimes if I let my mind wander on things like this, then suddenly whatever my mind has been wondering and pondering over becomes clear. I think this bathroom would be the perfect antidote.

An inlaid stream one of the more unusual features

But maybe not the stream…

It looks good but I'm not sure how practical it really is

Although I do have to admit it does look pretty. Just, as I said before, not very practical!