I am sitting writing this on a truly misty November Monday morning; the kind where it hangs still and heavy in the air and it takes a large pot of tea to get yourself going. We are teetering on the edge of autumn before the fiery warmth of November gives way to the icy chill of winter. Soon we will be waking to twinkling frosts and fingers crossed, those perfectly clear and crisp winter mornings where everything seems to sparkle in the early morning light.
It has been an unusually warm autumn, a real gift when much of your working life is spent outdoors, and a real godsend as I embarked on an incredibly busy few weeks working on beautiful October/November weddings across Shropshire, Cheshire and Liverpool. Before the floral chaos began, I nipped over to Carol's garden to pick buckets of seasonal bounty and filled the van with antique silver and gold vessels for a brief weekend trip to Buckinghamshire.
Not one to naturally beeline for the moody crimson reds and inky aubergine purples, I can't help but feel they very much have their place this time of year. As I wove my way through Carol's garden I purposely ignored my usual pale favourites and filled buckets with mauve speckled vines, moody plum scabious and bold as brass blood red dahlias. I also gathered an abundance of jewel-like fruits including quince on the branch gifted generously by Carol - a real seasonal treat that I gifted to my mum after the shoot to make her famous quince jelly. Once flowers and fruit were safely stored back in Buckinghamshire, I headed to the kitchen to make a sticky chocolate plum cake that Waitrose have been tempting me with for weeks.
I woke to a warm and still autumn morning where a favourite old comfy jumper sufficed in keeping the chill at bay. Flowers were arranged, the cake placed on an antique silver cake stand and fruits placed atop the coal bunker; an amassing of some of my favourite things. Pheasants called across the fields in the distance and I could hear the kettle being filled and mugs set out for tea in the kitchen adjacent to where I was working in anticipation for elevenses. As soon as the roll of film had ended, that cake was whisked away to be eaten by the fire whilst the logs crackled and the wind picked up outside.
There is something inherently warming about using these deeper hues this time of year and I wanted to capture the beauty of this rather forgotten month before the festivities are well underway for Christmas. I returned to pick up the vases from the shoot a few days later (left to grace the dining room as a thank you) and was greeted with a bubbling plum and blackberry crumble with lashings of custard using the leftover fruits from the shoot pictured above... a happy sight indeed.