The votes have been cast, but who are the floral kings and queens of the Cadogan Estate’s 2017 Chelsea in Bloom competition?
Have you made it down to see the magnificent floral displays in Chelsea yet? If you didn’t manage to secure a ticket for the famous RHS Flower Show, you still have time to enjoy a free, spectacular flower show in the royal borough. An impressive 51 boutiques, hotels, restaurants and local businesses have taken part in this year’s Chelsea in Bloom, each creating unique window and store-front displays to be a part of an ever-popular community event, and in an attempt to pick up a coveted award.
While the awards have now been announced – details below – you still have two more days to enjoy the safari-themed displays. Find out more about the show and the judges here.
Without further ado, here’s who took the crowns of Chelsea in Bloom 2017:
Innovation Award: Tom Davies
Designed by Hayford & Rhodes, the luxury eyewear boutique presents a resplendent savanah sunset, in a warm palette of orange, red and yellow. Vibrant optical frames in matching shades are nestled in the inventive floral display, both inside and outside the store. Capturing the colours of a sunset is no easy task, but the abundance of the variety of flowers and sunglasses used for this innovative masterpiece shows the dedication to Chelsea in Bloom’s Floral Safari theme. And could there be a more appropriate display, given the weather we've had this week? Case closed. Congratulations, Tom Davies!
On winning the Innovation award, Tom Davies says: "I'm extremely happy to have been a part of this spectacular event again this year, and to have won the innovation award. I have to give a big thanks to the Hayford & Rhodes team, as they did a fantastic job interpreting my vision, and making it come to life. To be honest, it's even better than what I had envisioned. The infusion of flowers and blending of colours are a true representation of a safari sunset. Of course, I couldn't have gone without adding around 150 of my cotton acetate frames embedded in the installation. It all came together perfectly in the end and I'm well happy."
Emma Forsey (Brand Manager), Hayford & Rhodes, adds: "Our Chelsea In Bloom design took months in planning, with a collaboration from the Tom Davies and Hayford & Rhodes Creative Directors, the design grew and adaptations were made in every step of the planning process until we were happy with the concept and creative direction of the final design. 3000 individual flowers were shipped directly from our growers in Holland two days before the installation day, with a total of 24 hours preparation time and a team of 7 florists working 8 hours into the night to install on site.
On maintaing the impressive display, Forsey reveals "The Chelsea In Bloom week had to be the hottest week we’ve had yet! Pre-empting the heat we were clever in selecting flower varieties that not only worked aesthetically but are also known for their longevity with orchids taking centre stage. Belt and braces we also took the time to place each one of the 3000 flowers into individual water tubes which eased the maintenance of our floral sunset. We also took the time to be onsite at the Tom Davies store throughout the week to ensure the blooms always looked their best."
Best Floral Display: Hackett
Wildabout Flowers teamed up with Harlequin Design to design the winner of the Best Floral Display accolade. An assortment of tropical planting and bright blooms spill onto the street in this eye-catching wild and multi-faceted façade that wowed the judges. Look closely and you’ll spot 3-D leopards and monkeys made from hundreds of flowers emerging from the urban jungle.
Highly Commended: Kiki McDonough
Styled by Maggie Coker and Phillip Corps, this eye-catching display pops out against the classic white store front of the Symons Street jewellers. Starring an elegant, floral giraffe, the colourful yet contrasting blend of pink and orange flowers offers texture as well as depth to highlight the ‘Gemstone Safari’.
Highly Commended: Rag & Bone
Harper and Tom’s collaboration with Rag & Bone emphasises the architectural beauty in Chelsea by producing a dramatic arch with an abundance of African wildflowers for the entrance. Two now Instagram-famous giraffes frame the entrance to the store on the corner of Sloane Square.
Highly Commended: Smythson
After delving into Smythson’s rich archive, the British luxury leather goods brand commissioned London-based florist Amanda Willgrave to help create a window display that tells an enchanting story inspired by the golden age of travel. Taking inspiration from Giraffe Manor in Kenya, the entrance to the Sloane Street boutique is flanked by two life-sized topiary framed giraffes complete with moss-covered frame and an array of foliage and plants that bring the animals to life. Look out for the charming poem written across the windows.
People's Champion: Club Monaco
Last, but not least, the People’s Champion award - as voted for by the public - was today awarded to Club Monaco for its ‘Borneo Jungle’. The window facing out onto Sloane Square is full of monkeys, reptiles and birds seen through a deep lush tropical landscape of palms, overgrown moss and ivy – you may need binoculars to spot the abundance of creatures’ in this year’s winning display, designed by leading floral stylist Bloom & Wild.
Special Mention: Red Valentino
Red Valentino’s storefront has been transformed into a sophisticated jungle for Chelsea in Bloom, featuring a wild vine and grass tiger. The floral kingdom unfolds throughout the store, with a base of wild grass and moss. Tangled vines crown the boutique’s signature plush pink furnishings, alongside Monstera, Livistonia and Banana plants. REDValentino have also created a special, limited-edition T-shirt for Chelsea in Bloom in collaboration with street artist Matteo Giuntini. Only 85 T-shirts have been produced and are available to buy now, priced at £115.
Chelsea is also home to a number of life size floral animals throughout the week, in support of The Elephant Family, an organisation dedicated to protecting the Asian elephant from extinction. Visitors can depart on their very own safari tour to see the following animals, created by florists ‘All For Love London’ at the following areas:
· Sloane Square: Life size Asian elephant, crocodile and hippo
· Duke of York Square: Pair of majestic lions
· Sloane Street: Two elegant zebra
· Pavilion Road: A rhino and crocodile
Join the conversation on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram using #ChelseainBloom