Trains, planes, buses and bikes: a few days in Holland. Travelling south from Schiphol the tulip season is a very distant memory, but I did get to see delphiniums growing out in the fields.
Naturally, my holiday snaps have a rather floral bias and represent the table décor from kebab takeaway to fine dining.
I enjoyed watching a florist make bouquets from her work bench at the pavement edge. In comparison, another shop was warehouse-like in proportions with banks of cut flowers in grey buckets and plenty of space to circulate thus avoiding the I‘ve just-stepped-into-a-boutique-and-can’t-afford-anything squash and the where-is-the-door conundrum. The Dutch really do embrace their flowers, and no wonder, I was tempted by a stunning flat-topped spherical bouquet of cream roses, mixed foliage and more, which was just 19 euros (£15).
Autumn colours approach so fast. In August (surely the height of summer), there were potted Chinese lanterns on sale everywhere and all sorts of decorative gourds and squashes. On the banks of the Old Rhine in Leiden my eye was particularly taken by a water hyacinth floating in a terrarium, bound with string. Such simple idea, which could easily be recreated at home.
My week of culture spanned the gap between the Lakenhal Muesum in Leiden, tracing the cloth history of the city, to all the fun of the fair. I loved the colour swatches that were displayed at Lakenhal and the sculpture showing the warp and weft threads of the loom.
My theme park thrills were confined to the gentle pace of the 100 year carousel and its richly detailed paintings and adornments.
But enough of European culture – how about joining me for a pint at The Wheel Inn, Westwell near Ashford for some flowers and afternoon tea.
Until next time, happy flowers!
If you’d like to find out more about my next flower arranging workshops, you can sign up direct to my mailing list on the home page of my website – or, if you’d rather, just email me at email@example.com
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