Update: Come and Dine (flower arranging)
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One of the final finishing touches that can be made for your dinner party is an arrangement of flowers to decorate the table. Although Highclere Castle has such a wonderful of team of gardeners working throughout the year, ensuring the grounds look inviting while encouraging biodiversity, during the winter months it can still be a challenge to find the perfect combination of flowers to arrange. Throughout summer however, this is a complete joy as the gardens are alive with colour and humming with bees!
With some help from the local supermarket (providing a few out of season flowers) a beautiful display can be made for the table. Please enjoy this short video of Lady Carnarvon preparing the flowers, in the castle cellars, for an upcoming dinner party:
Dear Lady Carnarvon
Thank you so much for taking the time to record this video. I feel that since finding my way to your blog via the Mary Berry television programme it has been such a pleasure to read and appreciate day to day life and events at Highclere. Coupled with reading both your books on the 5th and 6th Countesses of Carnarvon, I am greatly looking forward to visiting Highclere in the summer. Thank you again.
What a beautiful arrangement you have created, Lady Carnarvon, with winter floral for the dinner table! ‘Beginning to plan the dinner here in Greece, too, and there are cyclamen (kyklamina) “in season” at the farmers’ market, so I might consider a “potted” plant in a ceramic bowl…still dreamin’. I have seen the beautiful grounds of Highclere Castle, and the garden with the sundial, when I visited in April, 2015, ah, the daffodils were in bloom then! Lovely!
I have some large pots of cyclamen on tables – a mass of colour!
Dear Lady Carnarvon,
Thank you for this interesting video. I, too, use faded but still lovely hydrangea blossoms, mine in blue. I note that you purchase alstroemerias from the market. I think that these are a wonderful addition to almost any arrangement. They are incredibly long lasting, available in a wide array of colors and cost very little at least in New England!
Your blogs are a joy each week! Many thanks.
You are quite right alstroemerias are really useful.
Dear Lady Carnarvon
It is so interesting to watch each of your video.And for me as the non English speaking person it is a great pleasure to listen to your original English speech.
You have made very elegant decoration of garden’s flowers but without of help of professional designers.
Do you like the idea to decorate the table for the party to combine some fruit and flowers or a small branches
of flowering plants?
I wish well being.
I do like to incorporate herbs or fruits but this time of year is the hardest!
Good morning Lady Carnarvon,
I really enjoyed your video this morning because I have NEVER thought about putting wire in the flower bowl. What an easy and practical way to do arrangements!!
I’ve always used tape but it was so difficult to hide even with the flowers and then when I removed the tape it was so sticky on the edges of the glass. It drove me crazy every time I cleaned the vase. I am definitely going to do this from now on and I promise to give you and your mother the credit LOL.
I’m looking so forward to my dinner party and I am trying to incorporate some of your suggestions along with my personal traditions and style.
I know you are encouraging us to be creative so at the end of the day I guess as long as my guests have a good time and “hopefully” enjoy my cooking, then I will say the gathering is a success. Here’s to hoping! ☺️
As always I hope you’re having a wonderful day and thank you for just being so gracious and encouraging to your Highclere fans
I just think dinner parties are about friendship and laughter – your guests will be invited!
Lovely! Thank you for posting.
We are all loving you! Thanks so much for the video and sharing your voice as well as your expression and little stories about family! Thank you for sharing about the flowers being from both yours and your husband’s gardens!!!!You have become a special friend.
Thank-you for this lovely video of your arrangements. A joy to watch.
Another really interesting blog & video. It’s so good to have your interesting weekly posts to look forward to each week.
We frequently use the heads of white & blue agapanthus (aka African Lilly) for table arrangements as you can cut them short or long & the blooms last for a couple of weeks. You can let them go to seed in the garden & pick them like that. We’ve spray painted seed heads silver, gold & bright colours. An easy to grow versatile plant that flowers from mid-summer to Autumn in the UK.
Dear Lady Carnarvon,
Thank you very much for sharing this video. What type of wiring did you use for this arrangement? I have just begun reading your blog and I feel so at home. I am always excited to receive an update with a new post! It is my hope that one day I will be able to see Highclere and witness the beauty and history for myself.
Thank you for letting us glimpse part of your world!
Having just read this installment of “Come and Dine” and also having watched the video, I think you mentioned a flower frog, which took me wait back to my childhood. We had lovely gardens and, even as a little girl I do remember enjoying picking flowers and making my own floral arrangements with the help of a flower frog! I have never seen, read about or held one since and I am sure it is still there in our family home. Of course , they are not to be had unless sold on vintage sites, or Ebay which I am seriously thinking of purchasing one or two.
I also watched some of your “Cooking with Lady Carvarvon” videos which I did not know existed. Such easy to prepare dishes and they looked delicious– the roasted fig salad, yummy!!
Perhaps one of these years, you could do another event where the public have a chance to work with you–a cooking event!! That I am sure would go down very well.
Best wishes from sunny California!