Today’s the day the teddy bears have their picnic.
On a rare sunny day not too long ago, I took to the park with a few pals, a bottle of vino, a couple of plastic tumblers and a picnic fit for a princess. Needless to say, it wasn’t long before I found myself thinking – ‘this is the life’. And it really really is. When the sun is shining, you’ve nowhere to be and the park is calling, it’s hard to imagine life any sweeter.
Since this escapade, I’ve decided that owning a genuine picnic hamper is one of the few bare essentials necessary for a happy equilibrium in life. A proper one. A wicker one with a handle and pretty plates and cups and real napkins. You know the one. Do they still sell such a thing, I hear you cry? And where might I find such a wonder? Well hold onto your seats folks, I’ve had my shopping goggles on and hunted out some absolute gems.
I have to say though, if you’ve got the energy and shizam, there’s nothing better than concocting your own vintagey picnic loveliness in all its finery. If you’re based in Glasgow then head down to the antique heaven that is Ruthven Mews, tucked behind Byres Road in the west end – click HERE for more details. If you pop into the first shop on the left as you enter the arcade, you might just find pretty much everything you’ll need. They usually have a good selection of wicker hampers, vintage crockery, cutlery and you might even find some vintage napkins if you dig deep enough. Better still, why not find yourself some pretty vintage fabric and make your own pretty napkins? Easy peasy lemon squeezy.
If all that sounds a little bit too much like hard work – shame on you. Just kidding. Here are a few high-street and internet savvy suggestions that the postman can drop straight on your doorstep:
This very pretty set is in a lovely basket, making a change from the usual suitcase shape. It contains enough gear for you and three others, including wine glasses and napkins. La de da. Grey Willow Picnic Hamper, £75, John Lewis.
Of course Fortnum and Mason stock a Rolls Royce selection of picnic hampers. Of course they do. And if you’re feeling like making a serious investment in your picnicking, you could literally spend hundreds upon hundreds of pounds on a glorious hamper in there. This is among their most modest offerings and is apparently designed with wine lovers in mind as it contains two wine glasses, a corkscrew and a bottle cooler as well as all the essential picnic kit, not forgetting the tablecloth, napkins and a salt and pepper. Very posh. Natural Picnic Basket, £120, Fortnum and Mason
Little brand ‘Life’s a Picnic’ lovingly create the most beautiful willow picnic hampers to an impeccable standard and with much character, each one being totally unique and furnished with an irresistible mix of vintage tableware and linens. Mabel LOVES. Now, if only I had a couple of hundred spare smackers to throw at my new-found passion for picnicking. Vintage Picnic Hamper – ‘Riverside Shapes’, £235, by Life’s a Picnic (available at tworedtrees.co.uk)
Now all we need is a sunny day, a few hours out of work and some food to scoff too! Watch the kitchen with a beady eye for help in that department…