Mark some dates in the calendar for some dates with yourself. Once in a while, there is nothing like going solo to discover oneself in the midst of a teeming crowd. On a recent sunny weekend in London, I opted for a couple of solo dates.
Like a queen bee flying from flower to flower in hunt of sweet honey, I descended at the lovely neighbourhood of Chelsea which was hosting the RHS Chelsea Flower Show. While the exhibition was a ticketed event, and a rather expensive one, so even if you haven’t bagged a ticket, you can still see some blooming beautiful floral displays on the streets of London for free! Many shops and restaurants have been transformed in honour of the event, with this year’s theme being ‘Summer of Love’. There was even a stunning floral heart (right in front of Saatchi Gallery) where visitors can post congratulatory messages to the Duke & Duchess of Sussex, which was scheduled to be delivered to the newlyweds at the end of the week. Couldn’t make it London to see the displays in person? Well..keep reading on and you can always bookmark these places for next year. Yes, it happens every year, around the same time! These decorations will surely woo the busy-bees in you like it did to me.
Certainly being in the company of a group of friends is one thing, being with a partner is another kind of fun. But being all by yourself is surely another worthwhile experience because London never lets anyone feel alone. There is always one thing or another to keep every solo soul on top of their toes in London.
I took a steady stroll to check out the gorgeous floral artworks diligently decorated by the participating retailers. Those who would prefer not to visit the actual exhibition but would still want to soak up the flowery festivities, this was a perfect option.
One disadvantage for bloggers to go on a solo date is, ”But…who will take my picture?”. I’m thankful to Hannah who joins me briefly for the floral art installations walk and conspicuously stayed away from the limelight, rather happily agreed to snap me at some of our favourite floral art installations. If you are looking for someone with youthful, fresh enthusiasm for your next portrait/family/fashion/couple photoshoot, give her a buzz.
Our floral-display-photo-walk for Chelsea in Bloom started with the main square where you have the information box and the giant heart installation- truly LOVE IS BLOSSOMING.
Right opposite to it was the larger than human sized L.O.V.E installation, clearly there is a lot to ‘love’ about Chelsea!
From there, we headed out towards the largest storefront installations of the area-Rag & Bone. This store has collaborated with florist Harper and Tom’s to create a display inspired by the music and graphic arts that emerged from the original ‘Summer of Love’ in the sixties. Thousands of plants and flowers cover the storefront, including trailing ivy, Boston ferns, carnations, sea lavender and heathers to create a truly colourful and head-turning display. Surely there was no rags and bones in sight!
Before we decided to move ahead, we decided to cross the road quickly and stop by Club Monaco who according to me, has one of the most stunning shop fronts in Sloane Square generally, if not the best.
Our next stop was Pavilion road where you have some of the best displays of the event. Moyses Stevens have outdone themselves this year with a VW campervan that takes centre stage, along with lots of bold blooms. Although I missed their free flower giveaway this year to every visitors that they had last year. The floral displays in front of Sarah Chapman and Olivia Von Halle will surely make you stop for a photo-op.
This year’s ‘Chelsea in Bloom walk’ will be incomplete if you didn’t see clothing store Hackett‘s patriotic installation that gives a nod to the royal wedding, with a vibrant red London bus made out of red and white roses, adorned with a Union Jack flag and Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s initials. A number of red, white and blue flowers and some bunting completes the very British display.
Wow! Jeweller Kiki McDonough, a favourite of the Duchess of Cambridge, had transformed her Chelsea boutique with this eye-catching display. Kiki has joined forces with florist Phillip Corps to create her display, which features a girl sitting on a swing dressed in a sixties-style jumpsuit based on a similar outfit she once had. Really, the whole scene is enough to make you feel like dancing.
Another favourite of mine was this vibrant installation from jeweller Monica Vinader.
This kaleidoscopic display features bright Chrysanthemums in contrasting colours and patterns to transport the store back to an era of peace and love.
Right next to it, there was Dubarry which had aim to transport you back to Woodstock with its bright floral camper van and festival campsite display, which was created with Rose Hamson Flowers. Bright hanging floral hearts give a further nod to the Summer of Love theme.
Chelsea looked like a sea of flowers every corner that eyes could see. A city in bloom left no space for doom and gloom but certainly I left some space for Dishoom in the end.
After my bee-ing with the flowers in Chelsea, I had to visit my all-time favourite bee-hive for the undoubtedly best Indian food in London, Dishoom. This time I went to the Dishoom located at South Kensington and lack of any conversation allowed enough time for contemplation while savouring the delectable delicacies dished out in front of me.
A solo flight that started with flower hopping at Chelsea ended with a spicy conclusion at Dishoom. Like finding yourself under different shades of light, London could always be enjoyed and explored – all in a group, as a couple and certainly as a solo senorita!
What Was I Wearing?
P.S. All the photos in which I’m featured in are shot by Hannah and edited by me, rest all are clicked and edited by me.0