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Kally Ellis Founder of McQueens – and the things that make her Swoon
Kally Ellis is the founder of McQueens, a premier London based florists, that is so much more than a florists. In 1991, from a small florist in Shoreditch, Kally had a clear aim in mind: “I wanted to sell simple, stylish flowers, beautifully presented, to the London market. And I knew people would love it.” Since then Kally used her marketing expertise, strong sense of colour and design, and genuine passion for flowers, to establish McQueens as a premier name in both the UK and international flower market. You can find McQueens flowers at the most fantastic events and spaces around the globe: From the A-list Vanity Fair post-Oscar party in Los Angeles, to fashion shows in London. From the Tribeca film festival in New York to the capital’s most talked about five-star hotels. From weddings and restaurants to television and film, McQueens has redefined the way we think about flowers, forever.
We spoke to Kally to ask her about the things that make her Swoon…
Without doubt, these are my personal highlight of the winter season. Banish any thoughts of those gaudy poinsettias with their crepe petals. These delicate, bashful Christmas roses in pure white make my heart skip a beat every time. I have them in my garden too and they look every bit as perfect as they do in a vase, believe me.
Cire Trudon – Ernesto
I do adore scented candles and I must say I usually have one of my own McQueens scented candles on the go at home (peony or gardenia). But this particular candle is my all-time favourite from the world’s oldest candle making company. There’s a hint of musk and incense about it which is so heady that it is practically spiritual.
I do spend a lot of my time at Claridge’s – as well as being responsible for all the flowers there, we also have a wonderful little McQueens boutique in the hotel – but at the end of the day, this is the perfect place to unwind and enjoy a little glass of fizz. It’s tiny and tucked away, which makes it slightly naughty and terribly romantic, all at the same time.
The Corner Room – The Town Hall Hotel
We recently outgrew our space on Old Street so we’ve just moved to a large, newly-refurbished warehouse in Bethnal Green. This wonderful little dining room is one of my great new discoveries – the food is fresh and innovative, it has a wonderfully serene atmosphere and the service is impeccable. It’s definitely one of Bethnal Green’s best kept secrets.
Susy Harper, Upper Street, Islington
I first discovered Michelle and her amazing little boutique about a decade ago when she was based in Cross Street and I just adore the cut of her clothes. Every season I will buy one or two pieces and I know that each time I wear them they will give me untold pleasure. My husband has a conspiracy theory because each time he pops in – be it Christmas or my birthday – Michelle instinctively knows exactly what I want.