Style Advice


Get green, get floral and dress right

17 May

The Chelsea Flower Show is a great British institution. It began over a century ago in 1913 on the present site of the Royal Chelsea hospital and was an immediate success. It offers the opportunity to stroll through the beautiful gardens spawned from the most intriguing horticultural minds and all the while enjoying a few fruity drinks or cups of tea; it is deeply English.

The show celebrates great design, an appreciation of the natural world and sublime artistry. Moreover its unique blend of tradition (bowler-hatted nurserymen) and modernity (revered furniture designer Tom Dixon is showing with an underground vertical farm) makes it an event that aligns with Chester Barrie’s principles. Our carefully chosen materials [link travel suit article], our focus on a natural fit [made-to-measure piece] and an aesthetic steeped in British tradition [Gold Label article] all resonate very strongly.

As with attending any quintessentially British event, the dress code is paramount. We are here to help guide you through any potential confusion.

Dress Tips:

You can’t go wrong with a jacket and a tie.

Take a lightweight coat; this is England after all.

A pocket square is a welcome embellishment.

Floral print; get into the spirit.

With this in mind, we have put together one smart and one casual outfit for your choosing.


The bold check Berkeley suit in 100% navy wool from Italy has a dark hue, notched lapels and a tailored shape that makes it an unfaltering outfit choice. The suit goes impeccably with smart black shoes.

On the Chelsea Flower Show’s website, the only official clothing guideline (we all know about the perils of unofficial etiquette) are as such: “consider the nature of the event and the effects of any inclement weather on surface conditions, and wear suitable clothing and footwear”. That’s why the bonded Prince of Wales check coat in grey is an ace choice, especially if some rogue dark clouds decide they might want to water the gardens.

Finally, the floral printed tie in this outfit will nod to the ethos of the event just as pointedly as it does subtly to the navy blue of the outfit.


The beige chinos are a great choice for a garden stroll and a glass of champagne. We’ve added a rich green knitted tie, to reference the colour of natural growth and paired it with a Jaspe Prince of Wales check jacket, in which the buttons are consistent with the chinos. To round this garden-meandering outfit off is a soft blue pique shirt; easy on the eye and even easier on the skin.

Speculative Theory: In 2013 the ban on gnomes was lifted from The Chelsea Flower Show. The following year, in 2014 10,000 portions of fish and chips were eaten throughout the show. Coincidence? We think not.  

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