Art, Do, Life in London
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Flower Hour

The fact that the 22nd of May marked the start of Chelsea in Bloom had been in my calendar for months, ever since my beady little flora-seeking eyes had noticed it swing by in an email or Instagram ad.

But the truth is, I didn’t really understand what exactly Chelsea in Bloom was, until we went to check it out in person.

Which also meant that I totally missed the fact that the whole event is centered around the Chelsea Flower Show, so didn’t try to snaffle up tickets to that, which is probably anyway all for the best as I also need to be able to afford to eat this month.


The ‘In Bloom’ part of it all involves the shops in the suburb of Chelsea taking up with a central theme (this year it was ‘Flowers in Film’), and decorating their storefronts to that style.

Which meant the fun was in walking around and looking at how the various shops chose to represent their theme, trying to guess what they were… and of course taking a lot of silly selfies and portraits.

You have been warned.

Despite the official map, it wasn’t always 100% clear which shops were playing along, and at least some of them I know were cheating:

I’m not mad, but the LV x Yayoi Kusama is a thing that exists outside of the Bloom-reality.

But also it’s true that some of the shops seemed a little half-in with the themes, or at least, Sameer and I weren’t cultured enough to work out what exactly they were supposed to be.

Others were perhaps less flower-y, but more clear.

A lot chose to theme up with the shops themselves. Behold Lloyd’s bank:

Sticks and Sushi on the left, and something with a Japanese theme (and Japanese menu) on the right.

This was a place called Pulpo, which I think explains the ‘leg’. Definitely one of my favourites that we saw:

Also a good use of everlasting flowers! Some shops went with the fake flowers, which looked less wilted than many of the real flower places, but also gave of a clearly-fake vibe in many cases.

Although this one, a leather/wallet shop with fake paper ferns, was particularly great.

Another favourite was this one:

Real carnations, intricate patterns, all the way up the building.

Along the way there were also a couple of themed areas in parks and public places.

Here we saw the Lion King:

Mary Poppins:

And one of the greatest of all:

Here’s a small smattering of some of the others we saw, which by no means represent the total bunch of floral arrangements on show:

Of course most perfect of all of the flower movies to feature was also there:

At some point, Sameer became hungry….

.. so we made our way to our reserved spot at a restaurant named Rabbit.

A tasting menu was involved- one that was at least somewhat themed for the event- and it was …fine.

Tasty enough, but a bit too heavy for our liking (very buttery), with a surplus of (unannounced!!!) dill turning up in every fishy course, and an overly solid dessert of chocolate ganache.

Sorry Rabbit, you’re not quite for us.

As for the Flowers, I guess we’ll be back next year.

And maybe we’ll even sell one of Sameer’s nice quality kidneys to get ourselves into the show itself.

26th May 2023. For those of you playing along, the next day we went here.

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