Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Osterley Park

Since moving to London last November we've still barely explored our area, but with the beautiful spring weather we've been having lately it seemed high time we got out there a bit more. Our local National Trust property Osterley Park is just about a ten minute drive away, so we paid it a visit for the first time.

We had a quick tour of the house first, then stopped at the stable block cafe (the old stalls are still intact!) for a traditional cream tea in the tea garden, before continuing to explore the landscape gardens.

The Tudor walled garden. Presumably as a result of reading (and re-reading) The Secret Garden as a child, walled gardens always have a slightly magical feel to me. Glancing over the map of the gardens of stately homes such as this will often elicit a little gasp, "a walled garden - let's go there first!" Even though they often (as in this case) turn out to be a standard, working vegetable patch, the wall gives them an air of mystery and romanticism. I know I'm not the only one!

Shall we also take a quick moment to reflect on the dress? Check out that print! Novelty and atomic, and the colours are fabulous. I love all my dresses, but this in particular is one of my absolute favourites and I wear it a lot through the warmer months, though you don't often see it here on the blog (mostly because there's a limited number of ways to wear such a statement print and there seems little point in posting photoset after photoset of me in the same look). It was also quite a bargain as I recall, from US ebay.

1950s dress, ebay; 1950s feather hat, can't remember (ebay?); Crochet gloves, can't remember (ebay? charity shop? car boot?); Sandals, purchased in Thailand; Handbag, etsy; Belt, charity shop; Clip-on earrings, car boot sale. Oh, and yes, I did manage to recreate the back-roll hair do!


  1. You are the cutest and I love that dress! Also, that magnolia is lovely. I love this time of year so much, all the flowers and trees in bloom :D

  2. What a simply beautiful place! England in the sunshine is breath taking!

  3. The print on that dress is lovely. The colors are so sweet and springy!

  4. I love Osterley- another good one locally (though you have to pay I think) in Syon Park ... oh and even good old Gunnersbury Park & Walpole Parks have historical houses and walled gardens... hahaha I should do a blog post on this!

    I love that dress. I recently got a yellow, peach and white 50s American dress and I love the idea of accessorising with tan shoes/hat! :)

  5. Indeed you are not alone LOL
    I love walled gardens (I actually love vegetable gardens too ;)) and now, since I introduced them to the Secret Garden, my kids love them too :)

  6. Gorgeous handbag, shoes and outfit! Love it, and it emphazises this lovely weather going on only more!


  7. I love wandering round National Trust houses in gorgeous weather. Having picnics in the grounds is fun too.
    Your dress is wonderful, I can see why it's a favourite :)
    R xx

  8. I have a NT membership so need to visit Osterley again, it's extremely decadent on the inside. Lovely outfits there, more glam than one on my latest post - also about a NT house

  9. Ooh, it's lovely, I must visit!!!!!! What a beautiful dress!!!! I've missed your posts Charlotte!

  10. Lovely dress and beautiful pictures, isn't the UK stunning when the sun shines?!

  11. Love that dress!

    If you like walled gardens and are ever in Cornwall, the Lost Gardens of Heligan has a most amazing one where they even grow pineapples!

    1. "Lost Gardens of Heligan" sounds perfect, very much like something from a book! And pineapples! How crazy and fabulous. I'm definitely putting it on my list of must-visit places. Thanks for the tip.

  12. I'm with you on the walled gardens, I have such a thing about them. It's a wonderful looking place.

  13. I am really loving this look. The colours of the dress are amazing and suit you very well.

  14. You are definitely not alone with the walled gardens! I was absolutely enchanted by the Secret Garden as a child... and seem to remember making an astonishingly fabulous and intricate diorama of the garden at school. I wish I could see it again now...

    I also love all the Adam drawings on display at Osterley - I love the technique he used of kind of "folding out" the rooms to show the decorative scheme of the walls. I think there's a correct term for the type of drawing but memory fails me!


I'd love to hear your thoughts!


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