A garden party and tablescape using my first range of tablemats featuring my rose and bougainvillea blocks with a pretty scalloped edge.
How It Started
Back in 2018, entering my thirties, I realised that my social life wasn't as dynamic as 5 years before. My husband and I made a New Year's Resolution to host a dinner party every month to introduce new friends. Fast forward a year and the menu was often forgotten in favour of the flowers! Back then, the term 'tablescape' didn't exist. But my ethos began: a tablescape creates a scene that brings joy and delight to guests.
These designs are the result of passion, perfectionism and a hobby that has become much more than I ever expected!
How It Developed
Since 2020, much of my work has been devoted to this passion whether through workshops, masterclasses or brand partnerships with the likes of Belgravia, TikTok and Salvatore Ferragamo.
"It is never too late to be what you might have been."
It was only when living in India that I had the creative space and indeed - confidence - to consider designing. I first visited Jaipur on honeymoon five years ago, and it hit me straightaway. 'Hit' feels the only word appropriate: from its heady scents to its dawn-to-dusk harmonies of trains, tuk tuks and peacock calls, this is a city that rushes at you, in the most energising, stimulating way. I was addicted from that first moment, and Jaipur remains the most inspiring, exciting city I know. So much so that we moved to the city for nearly 6 months - a serendipitous happenstance of job moves and a house renovation - ready to embrace the city in all its colorful, noisy glory.
Jaipur is a city rich in artisanal heritage and renowned for its block printing - a craft that is handed down from generation to generation. My paintings were traced then cut by hand into wooden blocks for printing. Working with these skilled craftsmen was the greatest privilege of my time in the city. Their dexterity, eye for detail and patience is second to none.
Alongside the background hum of block printing, the city is abuzz with an entrepreneurial spirit of the new generation which enthused me to get started and pursue this creative project.
Why These Designs?
I've long advocated alternatives to buying new. So what makes this different? One of my greatest learnings of monthly dinner parties is that with classic pieces in your arsenal - white plates, silver cutlery - you only need a little colour for the final flourish. That's why my first design is the Jaipur Bloom napkins. Placed next to plain white plate, they elevate the everyday. Likewise the tablecloth is classic and simple enough that it can be brought out on countless occasions... But there's a petal party on the skirt should you wish to join in!
From the first stroke of a pencil on paper to the making of this website, this whole exercise has been a passion project for me. The results will forever remind me of our remarkable stay in Jaipur. Thank you to my friends from the city who encouraged me to pursue this creative idea; to the block printers for teaching me about their craft and having patience with my over-enthusiastic gesticulations to denote scattered flowers. Thank you to George, not only for your photography skills but for your encouragement since that first toast of a G&T at Diwali. And finally thank you to India, aged 3, for letting me join you at your painting desk in the sun room. I promise to use more blue next time.
The recipes, flowers, tips and ideas I return to every summer for dinners in alfresco in the garden at home or on holiday.
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