Celebrating history & heritage as RHS Chelsea makes its grand return

As RHS Chelsea Flower Show makes a welcome return this week, judges have awarded a 5* accolade to the picture perfect Alitex Greenhouse, styled by Selina Lake. 

Taking place for the first time in September, the Instagrammable display is set to inspire visitors, capturing the magic of the season’s changing.  

As autumn officially begins 22nd September, the space is themed around the transition from summer to autumn, whilst celebrating the history and heritage of flower shows with a modern spin. After a year hiatus due to the pandemic, this year’s RHS Chelsea Flower Show is even more special, providing a space to reconnect, explore and be inspired.  

Stylist Selina Lake who is the brains behind the 5* display, said – “It’s been such a privilege to work on this project, creating something so beautiful and blooming after the blur of the year we’ve all had. Autumn is such a rich and colourful season in the garden, and I’m delighted we’ve been able to bring to life a celebration of everything that makes it so special. I hope the space provides plenty of inspiration to reclaim your outdoor space, long after the summer comes to an end.” 

Selina’s top styling tips for late summer into autumn gardens… 

  1. Create a cosy corner – Your garden doesn’t need to be out of bounds just because the weather begins to chill. As temperatures drop, the addition of a chimenea, firepit, or installation of a wood burning stove, will add some gorgeous warmth to a seasonal outdoor space. A garden room with mains power can benefit from an electric stove, I’ve used the Sunningdale stove by Dimplex for this project. The perfect spot to gather round with friends or loved ones.
  2. Be inspired by nature – From burnt oranges, terracotta’s, peachy pinks, deep browns and evergreen shades, the rich palette of the season will leave you spoilt for choice. I use Autumn anemone, heather and dahlia plants in pots to soften and bring colour to outside seating and dining areas. Small trees such as crab apples work well to add height and interest. Cushions and throws in similar complimentary shades tie the overall outdoor living look together and will make garden furniture comfier so you can linger longer in your own patch of nature. All my plants for this project were sourced via Dobbies Garden Centres.
  3. Floral displays – Make the most of the late summer blooms, by creating floral displays and arrangements, just as you would inside your home. Fill green metal buckets and vases with an eclectic mix, with pops of pink, perfect peaches and marigold yellows. British Dahlias, Echinacea, Zinnias, Rosehips and pink and rust tone Sunflowers are all available from florists now if you don’t grow your own to pick. Arrange your collection of vases of blooms in a group in the centre of a round or oval table or along the middle of a rectangle shape table. As its harvest season I like to use baskets and bowls filled with apples and small pumpkins and squashes to dot in between my floral arrangements. 
  4. Work with what you have – Garden benches can be used to make inviting daybeds with a clever use of seat mattress cushions and scatter cushions. Simply layer roll out seat mattresses and arrange a selection of cushions. Utilise old ceramic and stoneware jugs to display seasonal flowers. If you fancy a new accessory for the autumn choose something that works with the on trend cottagecore style, such a cushion with a ruffle frill edge or a linen gingham tablecloth. Another big trend for the season is wide stripes, which can be achieved with textiles. My go to companies for cushions and tablecloths are Projektityyny and Studio Blackwell.
  5. Lights on – Outdoor lighting is a quick and easy addition to cosy up your space. Festoon lights will add a lovely illuminating twinkle, I always use sets from Lights 4Fun. Tea lights and candles scattered on outdoor dining tables add a romantic feel for early evening outdoor dining. Light up garden buildings with pendant lights, I love sourcing vintage glass shades from Lamb and Newt with filament bulbs or classic Anglepoise lamps for an evening glow.

Photography credit: Styling by Selina Lake, photography Julia Currie 


Selina Lake is a successful stylist, author and columnist. She has a monthly column in Modern Gardens magazine and her styling work can be seen in publications including Country Living, Homes & Antiques, The English Garden and Country Homes & Interiors. Selina has produced ten best-selling books for Ryland Peters & Small, her latest book Shed Style was launched in 2020. Selina’s passion for the horticultural world is certainly demonstrated in her love of all things botanical and her careful curation of colours and floral displays has led her to regularly style for multiple lifestyle magazines, host talks and styling demonstrations at The RHS Shows and style show gardens at RHS Hampton. For further information, please visit, www.selinalake.co.uk

All Social Media Channels @selinalake 

We will be happy to hear your thoughts

Leave a Reply

Local Gardener NEWSPAPER
Register New Account
Reset Password
Compare items
  • pedestrian rotary mowers wheeled (0)
  • Vacuums and blowers (0)
  • ride on lawn tractors (0)
Shopping cart