How I swapped the catwalk for horti-couture: As Chelsea Flower Show and London Fashion Week coincide for the first time ever, one fashionista reveals how she made her two passions collide

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  • Jan Masters says he’s more excited about Chelsea Flower Show than LFW
  • Fashion writer says she used to visit her west London garden while in lockdown
  • According to the Horticultural Trades Association, the UK received 3 million gardeners last year
  • Selfridges has also embraced the trend, launching garden centers in London, Manchester and Birmingham stores this summer

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Love high and low, just 18 months ago my tiny West London garden was all largely eaten up by ivy.

The only thing was to keep the sloping fence up. But early last year my husband and I finally decided to catch the nettle and start again.

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Little did I know that when the digger and cement mixer moved in, builders were laying the foundation for my new creative passion.

One that not only proved to be a distraction in recent difficult times, but also a focus that would match, even with my longtime passion for fashion, me in a growing trend hothouse. Establishing firmly – which is being hailed as horticulture by cultural commentators.

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This month the new green-fingers have been spoiled for inspiration with a spectacular late-summer performance at the RHS Wisley Flower Show and – in a wonderful one-time bonus – the Chelsea Flower Show, which takes place tomorrow after being transplanted from May to September. begins. For the first time in its 108 year history.

I never thought I’d say it, but the prospect of browsing the stands at Chelsea’s floral festival excites me more than any catwalk show or high-profile party at London Fashion Week.

I never thought I’d say it, but the prospect of browsing the stands at Chelsea’s floral festival excites me more than any catwalk show or high-profile party at London Fashion Week.

Having worked for Elle, Vogue and Cosmopolitan, my professional life has long revolved around the world of fashion.

Sartorially, I was one of the pioneers of tulle skirts with heavy shoes, as well as taking the color to extremes by wearing red top-to-toe. But my new favorite thing to dress for since the pandemic is my little patio.

I’m not the only fashionista to say, ‘Goodbye haute couture, hello horti-couture’. Selfridges has also embraced the trend, launching garden centers in London, Manchester and Birmingham stores this summer. As well as seeds and plants, these new botanical boutiques opened with an exclusive collection of self-labeled manure, signature-yellow gnomes, and Prada for gardening and fashion enthusiasts, as well as an’ one for expert advice. Potting shed’ too.

According to the Horticultural Trades Association, Britain received 3 million new gardeners last year. Gardening has become so lucrative in fact that the trend forecasting industry has coined a set of portmanteau words for it—always a sign that something is up.

‘Our future forecast analysis reveals what started with Cottagecore’ [a gardening and fashion style that celebrated simple living] ‘Now evolving into Horticool as the focus on outdoor living continues to influence the market,’ says Angela Baidoo, senior strategist at Trend Forecasters WGSN.

Horticool brings glamor to the garden, we are told – and vice versa. Well into 2022, among luxury and high street brands, expect to see graphic slogan T-shirts that celebrate nature, feminine silhouettes such as a dress paired with all-season footwear, home-grown fruits and vegetables. Made from natural colors, and cooperation with experts in outer space,’ continues Angela.

Horticool brings glamor to the garden, we are told and vice versa.  Well into 2022, among luxury and high street brands, expect to see graphic slogan T-shirts that celebrate nature, feminine silhouettes such as a dress paired with all-season footwear, home-grown fruits and vegetables. Made from natural colors, and collaboration with experts in outer space,' continues Angela.

Horticool brings glamor to the garden, we are told – and vice versa. Well into 2022, among luxury and high street brands, expect to see graphic slogan T-shirts that celebrate nature, feminine silhouettes such as a dress paired with all-season footwear, home-grown fruits and vegetables. Made from natural colors, and cooperation with experts in outer space,’ continues Angela.

Personally I am not surprised that the fashion world has embraced gardening with such enthusiasm. The texture and color in my garden rival anything a clothing designer could create. Earlier this year I tried a tulip called Bellisia. a revelation. The raspberry frill on its vanilla petals bleeds into silk like pink ink and is reminiscent of a ballgown.

Horticulturalist extraordinaire Sarah Raven describes Petunia Black Velvet, which has almost-noir flowers against bright green foliage, as something reminiscent of by Chanel. As with all designs, unusual joinery can shock.

When I planted Dream Touch tulip bulbs under a bare orange Dream Acer, I had no idea the flowers would be so tall or that Acer branches would be so short. But as the flowers threaded their way through the wings, the two dreams collided in a wonderful way.

Now, instead of spending my evenings glancing at clothes in magazines, I’m flipping through catalogs of plants. Some, like Sarah Raven, are presented beautifully. Others are nostalgic in the format – rows and rows of pictures and little text, set organically rather than magically. They remind me of my dad, Alpine for rockery and Busy Lizzie for his soldier-symmetric, suburban state.

I’ve found that trends aren’t just for clothing. Remember when dahlias were considered awesome and had their day? Crick, has that changed. In recent years she has entered a new time in the sun, her formerly fashionless face somehow contributing to her current coolness – a bit like a pleated skirt and white plimsols.

To really crave such special dahlias, you have to hurry to catch them. My friend was all set to order an available sample like this one from the fall of the new season when a neighbor called. By the time she came back online, all the stock was gone. The lesson is to think ahead.

Now, instead of spending my evenings glancing at clothes in magazines, I'm flipping through catalogs of plants.  Some, like Sarah Raven, are presented beautifully.  Others are nostalgic in format – rows and rows of pictures and little text, set organically rather than magically.  They remind me of my dad, alpine for rockery and marking busy Lizzies for their soldier-symmetric, suburban empire.

Now, instead of spending my evenings glancing at clothes in magazines, I’m flipping through catalogs of plants. Some, like Sarah Raven, are presented beautifully. Others are nostalgic in format – lines and lines of pictures and short text, prescribed …

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