As always, we’ve been pretty busy recently, getting all the copies of our S/S issue sent out to you,(we SO hope you’ve been enjoying it!) but also cracking on with planning the next issue! Summer seems to have finally arrived here in the UK and we are loving getting out and about, or just staying at home, enjoying some simple pleasures. Here’s a little of what our team have been doing of late. Don’t forget, you can also share the things you’ve been discovering, making, eating, reading, visiting etc, using our hashtag #seekinspirecreate on Instagram. (find us on IG here)
Berridon Farm, Devon – Laura Pashby (deputy editor)
I recently spent a weekend at Berridon Farm, a small family farm in North Devon. It was a true taste of the rural idyll, where the children were delighted to visit the goats, gather eggs straight from chickens, splash in the stream, climb in the treehouse and swing on the tyre swings. Each morning they awoke to a soft misty dawn, the trees around the cabin casting soft shadows on the dewy grass. They lit the stove to boil a kettle for tea and, mug in hand, strolled across the field and down the tree-lined lane to the honesty shop at the farmhouse to collect a basket of croissants, fresh from the oven.
DIY flower headband – Lucy Davidson (designer)
I recently created a DIY flower headband tutorial for Thought clothing. It’s the perfect time of year to make yourself one to wear to a party, picnic or just around the house (why not?!). It’s so simple to construct and makes you feel pretty special wearing it. I put mine together using bits and pieces I had around the house and a bunch of flowers from my local supermarket.
You can find the tutorial here, tag us to let us know if you make one!
Open Days at Perch Hill – Olivia Williams (brand and advertising manager)
With just a couple of hours to spare one Saturday afternoon we took a trip to Sarah Raven’s wonderful haven at Perch Hill. Visits there are very precious since the gates to the garden are only open to the public for just 10 days a year. We went eager to see the last signs of spring and the first glimpses of summer, which started as we navigated down the single track roads laden with cow parsley. The farm house sits pretty on its 90 acre farmland. Over the past 15 years it’s been carefully restored with new hedges, wild meadow flowers and Sussex cattle and sheep.
It’s an enchanting world stepping from the meadows through to the cutting garden, the ornamental gardens, glass houses and willow beds beyond. There’s a magical botanical mix in each garden filled with hardy and biennial crops … each one grows enough produce to supply the kitchens with home-grown fruit and veg for the open days, so naturally we made sure we tasted the wonderful lunch which we ate in the oast house garden. We returned home to our tiny townhouse garden eager to fill pots, ready for the summer and day dreaming of our next visit to Perch Hill.
Check out the next Open Day slots.
A Country Road, A Tree – Catherine Binnie (marketing and distribution manager)
I’m a massive fan of Jo Baker’s writing – Longbourn, her below stairs take on Pride and Prejudice is one of my favourite recent reads. Now, I can add another of her novel’s to my fave pile – A Country Road, A Tree charts the wartime experience of playwright Samuel Beckett, as he leaves Ireland and returns to Nazi-occupied Paris during WWII. A Country Road, A Tree is great historical fiction – depicting the terror, privation and struggle of life in occupied France. At the same time it’s an intricate portrait of a relationship and captures the frustrations of a man trying to find his artistic voice. Loved it.
Lunch at Ginger and Dobbs, Shoreham – Caroline Rowland (editor)
We recently found ourselves in the south coast town of Shoreham (picking up some furniture!), and decided to stop off for a bite to eat before heading home. What a lovely discovery Ginger and Dobbs was! A cafe and greengrocers with a vintage, rustic vibe, we particularly enjoyed their ‘Around the World of Scrambled Eggs’ section of the menu – the Spanish Huevos eggs were delicious! And with their seasonal veg, fresh bread, organic eggs and other delicacies, I think you’ll find it tough to leave empty handed!
RHS Hyde Hall – Kath Webber (sub editor)
With the Chelsea Flower Show heralding the British Summer, those of us middle-aged-at-heart turn our thoughts to the garden. RHS Hyde Hall, near Chelmsford in Essex, is a fabulous example of classic landscaping, beautiful bedding and ingenious planting; at the highest point in Essex is the dry garden. With a semi-arid climate that’s drier than the Jordan desert, it’s a perfect place to get inspiration for low-maintenance gardens and contemporary schemes. And there’s not one, but TWO cafes! Climb to the top of the dry garden to admire the modern planting, enjoy the flatter-than-flat East Anglian landscape and a classic cream tea in the barn tearoom.