Thursday, 22 March 2012

A New Gardening World

The sun is shining and the birds are singing and rather uncharacteristically I’m thinking about…gardening!  Albeit, my house still needs a lot of work on the inside, but equally it needs transforming on the outside too and as the weather turns in to hazy sunny days it makes me want to create a charming, relaxing space to kick back with a magazine or two, along with a chilled glass of pinot, whilst listening to the birds chirp away.  Obviously, if the boyfriend is reading this, only after spending a full day painting, sanding and demolishing of course.  A girl needs a sanctuary of calm away from the noise of drills and hammers!  So my new project for the Easter break is to renovate the garden. 

I would also love do some summertime entertaining, so I will be able to usher my friends and family through the chaos that is Beech House and guide them to a relaxing, tranquil garden for me to entertain them in.  Well this is the plan, but I am under no illusions here, I am no Monty Don!  I have gathered lots of images from magazines and from the internet that will hopefully guide me on my way.  However, as I don’t know the difference between a weed and a plant about to burst in to life, I have enlisted my secret weapon, my mother, a veteran at all things green and floral.  Here are a few images that I have found to inspire my garden redesign…

Images:  Pinterest

I might sound harsh here, but I hate a madly colourful garden, to be frank I find the mixture of bright colours somewhat gaudy and oppressive, so I will be focusing on a simple and soft colour palette for the flowers; whites, lilacs, soft pinks and pale yellows and the obligatory green of course.  Hydrangeas are my utmost favourite of all flowers, whether they be in vases in my home, or pots in my garden, they are a must for my redesign.  We are very lucky to have a huge variety of climbing roses at our house (my fabulously floral gardening gloves came in very handy whilst untangling them!).  Roses of all colours dominate the cobbled wall on my driveway and even form an arch around my front door!  Idyllic to say the least.  Roll on the summer so they will all be in full bloom, the scent is just divine.  

Due to my cookery obsession I think a herb garden is a must, and whilst pottering around the garden I have realised that we are already pretty well stocked…parsley, thyme, rosemary, bay, the options are endless!  So they just need rearranging and tagging.  I often get confused as to what herb is which, so if you are like me I have found these cute copper signs so pop in to the soil next to each herb so everything is easily identified!  Very helpful indeed. 

My outdoor space is a small, walled country garden.  Due to its limited size we will have to make the most of the space that we have and use clever tricks to play with the eye to make it appear larger than it actually is.  I am currently designing the lighting concept that will hopefully elongate the garden further by shining soft lights up against the cobbled wall.  I’m also going to use a lot of pots to fill with flowers to put on the courtyard itself, and here are my top picks of garden planters and pots this spring.

Images:  John Lewis and The Worm That Turned

To help me along my new gardening path in style, I have fallen in love with a few gardening accessoires.  I am a huge fan of Sophie Conran, I have her Portmeirion tableware range and I was thrilled to hear that she has teamed up with master gardeners Burgon and Ball to create a beautiful range of gardening tools that are almost too stylish to get dirty!  I also love the V&A range of garden accessories, they are super chic and stylish.  Finally the Cath Kidston gardening gloves are so lovely and come in a variety of prints and patterns, and will protect your hands from nasty thorny roses.  A real must have!  
Image:  Sophie Conran by Burgon and Ball 

Images:  V&A Gardening Tools

Image:  Cath Kidson Gardening Gloves
After trawling the shops, garden centres and online for the perfect patio furniture, I have found ‘the one’ at last.  I really think that good quality patio furniture is a great investment, and if looked after properly (put away/covered over in the winter months) it will last a life time!  We have settled on this circular limestone beauty by Neptune, with the Lloyd Loom chairs to match. 
Image:  Neptune Garden Furniture, John Lewis

Here at Butterfly Lane we have discovered the most elegant al fresco tableware ever!  These beauties look like your most prized glass collection but in fact they are made out of very sturdy, sparkly plastic.  So you can rest with ease as you have a dinner party al fresco style, this range will not smash!  The whole collection from salad bowl and servers, to plates and cutlery will be available to buy at Butterfly Lane soon.  I’ve just placed an order for myself too!
Happy gardening everyone…X  


  1. Hi Nikki

    I just stumbled across your lovely blog, your garden plans must be well under way by now (if the continuous rain hasn't hindered progress!). I loved your pic's of inspiration for your project and I too have my eye on that gorgeous Neptune dining set...I've loved today, the first dry Saturday in many weeks planting up some specimen trees bought in the summer sale...happy gardening xx

    1. Happy gardening too. I hope that the sunshine stays so that we can all spend a bit more time in the garden! So pleased that you enjoyed my blog. Visit again....X

  2. Thank you so much for sharing this. This garden looks like something straight out of a fairy tale. Its really mesmerising. I am very impressed by the different ornaments that you have used in the same. Everything is just so perfect!


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