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An ongoing series of informative useful tips, ideas, recipes and inspiration

Our Latest Blog Entry

15 June 2021

Charity Table Arrangement Workshop

Only one space available on 22 June 2021 

All profits from workshops will be donated to Cancer research

Now taking bookings for sourdough bread making, hand tied bouquets and tote bag workshops.

New courses will be available in the Autumn, they will include Wreath making, Christmas Garlands, Table arrangements and Hallway/ Entrance show stoppers.

click here to see up and coming workshops

27 April 2021

Workshops available to book now  for May 2021.

Make this useful and on trend bag ideal for shopping or taking to the beach. Price includes all materials including leather handles and refreshments.

Also taking bookings for sourdough bread making, hand tied bouquets and table arrangement workshops.

Click here to see up and coming workshops

21 March 2021

looking for a unique gift? 

Gloria Floribunda can create bespoke fabric that can be made into a cushion, bag, quilt, curtains and clothes. the list is endless.

The design can be printed on a variety of fabrics including organic cotton, recycled canvas, organza, velvet and even sports lycra. 

Fabric from £19/metre plus design service starting from £25 per design.

For further inspiration for unique gifts click here or contact us using the contact form.


21 March 2021

Available now to Book Standard Bell tents or Emperor bell tents for sleep over parties.

click here for inspiration for Children's Parties. Gloria Floribunda can help organise the perfect party.

20 March 2021

Workshops now available to book

Now taking bookings for sourdough bread making, hand tied bouquets and table arrangement workshops.

click here to see up and coming workshops

9 February 2021

Coming soon for Spring 2021

Available to hire furnished or unfurnished, the perfect venue for a dinner party, family gathering, wedding, party or celebration.

Book now via the  contact form or for more information, click here

25 January 2021

This week's special from The Refectory

Homemade Battenberg Cake

Making the sponge is easy, putting together can be slightly tricky but with patience you should end up with two cakes that taste better than the shop bought version and bigger too!! 

Top Tip: Store in an airtight container for a day after baking and the sponge becomes beautifully moist and the almond flavours increase with intensity. the jam is just a glue so keep it thin you don't want to overpower the delicate almond taste with raspberry jam.

Here is the recipe.


For the almond sponge

3 large organic eggs

175g unsalted softened butter or margarine

175g caster sugar

140g self-raising flour

50g ground almonds

½ tsp baking powder

½ tsp vanilla extract

½ tsp almond extract

For the pink sponge

1 x ingredients for almond sponge

natural pink food colouring,

To assemble

1 tbsp warm seedless raspberry jam

2 x blocks golden marzipan

lcing sugar, for dusting and rolling out


20cm x 20cm cake tins

Baking parchment


Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4 and line the base with baking parchment.

To make the almond sponge, place all the  ingredients in a bowl and mix with an  electric hand mixer or food mixer for at least 2 mins on full speed, wait until the ingredients have roughly mixed together before turning onto full speed.

Spoon into the prepared tin.

If you have two matching tins,  mix up the pink sponge ingredients with the addition of  the  pink food colouring and spoon into the prepared second tin. 

Otherwise bake the almond sponge first and then repeat for the pink sponge.

Bake both for 30 mins on the middle shelf of the oven,

When cooked remove from the oven and leave in tin too completely cool.

When both sponges are completely cool, remove baking parchment and cut both sponges into half down the middle and then each half  again down the middle so that you have four long strips of sponge.

Trim each strip so that you have eight evenly sized square ended strips of sponge.

Then "glue" a pink and an almond strip together with the jam, repeat 3 more times and then place one of the double strips on top of another having spread some more jam on the top surface but rotating 180 degrees so you create the classic Battenberg design. 

Repeat with the other double strips and you should have two cakes.

Thinly cover all four sides with jam on each cake.

Roll out a block of marzipan to roughly the size of the surface of one of the cakes and then carefully wrap around the sponge.

Trim the edges and place in an air tight container.

Repeat for second cake and enjoy next day when the sponge will have become moist from the almonds and the flavours have intensified.

Tuna Chilli Sourdough Toastie

19 January 2021

Tuna Chilli Toastie

A delicious Tuna Chilli Melt made with Sourdough Bread just hits the spot! When your sourdough bread is a couple of days old, it is easier to slice thinly to make these delicious toasties. 

Great for using up the last few slices before making a fresh batch.

This has become a lockdown special in our house!!


1 x tin of tuna, drained

1 tbsp mayonnaise

1 tbsp chilli dipping sauce

2 tbsp grated cheddar cheese

1 tbsp roughly chopped fresh coriander

Chilli flakes optional

1 spring onion, finely chopped

Softened unsalted butter or spreadable butter

Slices of sourdough bread


Butter two slices of bread

Mix the rest of the ingredients in a bowl, you can add chilli flakes for an extra kick

Heat up a small non stick frying pan on the hob, when hot place one of the slices of toast in the pan butter side down.

Add a large spoonful of the tuna mixture and place the second piece of bread with butter side up on top.

Cook for about 2 mins until golden brown and then carefully turn over.

When golden and crispy on both sides, remove from pan and enjoy!!

The mixture should make approx. four toasties, depending on the size of bread used. 

Eco Wrapping Cloths

13 January 2021

Furoshiki Eco Wrapping Cloths

Furoshiki is a traditional Japanese cloth. These versatile squares of fabric are a great alternative to paper gift-wrapping as they continue to be useful after the gift has been unwrapped.

Please check out The Store for a selection of 100% cotton wrapping cloths.

Bordallo Pinherio Pottery

10 January 2021

Bordallo Pinheiro Pottery

Who was Raphael Bordallo Pinheiro(1846/1905)?

Raphael Bordallo Pinheiro is one of the most influential people of nineteenth century Portuguese culture, with a remarkable production particularly regarding the areas of humoristic drawing, caricature and ceramic creation. His work represents an unsettling, ever timely reality and a fundamental document for political, social, cultural and ideological study of a time period.

Raphael Bordallo Pinheiro will forever be intimately associated with caricature and artistic ceramics, showing quality and important pieces never seen before, and which, in the opinion of renowned modern artists, are the work of a genius.

Since an early age he was interested in art, and he even attended the Belas Artes school. As he was a keen theatre goer, this was how he started publishing his humorous newspapers, achieving great success with some of them. The newspapers become precious documents for their artistic quality as well as their interpretation of the political and social events of the time, newspapers "Antonio Maria", " Pontos nos ii " and " A Paródia " being some of the examples.

In 1884 Bordallo began his ceramics production at the Fábrica de Faianças in Caldas, revealing pieces of great technical, artistic and creative quality, developing azulejos (blue tiles), panels, pots, table centerpieces, vase busts, fountain basins, pitchers, plates, perfume bottles, vases and gigantic animals, etc.

He became famous as well for his popular images, such as Zé Povinho (an image representing poor and oppressed people represented in various ways), Maria da Paciência (Patient Mary), Ama das Caldas (Nanny from Caldas), the policeman, the priest taking snuff, the sacristan with the censer in hand, and many others. Bordallo Pinheiro held exhibitions in Brazil, in Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo, where he presented the majestic Jarra Beethoven (Beethoven jar). His remarkable work with ceramics was awarded with the gold medal in international exhibitions (Madrid, Antwerp, Paris and in St. Louis, United States).

Adopting a modern and entrepreneurial approach, Bordallo Pinheiro plays an essential role in the revitalization of Portuguese ceramics and of the artistic heritage of its factory, Fábrica de Faianças Artísticas, Raphael Bordallo Pinheiro, in the national as well as the international scene.

Bordallo Pinheiro remains faithful to tradition using ancestral manufacture techniques and the naturalistic motifs at the root of the brand’s great project. At the same time, it gives its lines a contemporaneous dimension, thanks to the excellence of its production and its continuous reinvention, both at the aesthetic and technical level.

The brand’s utilitarian and decorative pieces continue to feed our collective imagination and to take the prestige of Portuguese culture and industry one step further.

The distinctive logo that can be found on pieces of Bordallo Pottery.

Please check out ​The S​tore, for a gorgeous set of vintage avocado dishes.

Sourdough bread

Happy New Year

6 January 2021

Sourdough Bread

Start off the new year with learning how to make Sourdough bread. It is very easy to make and doesn't  have yeast or sugar in the recipe.

I will be presenting a online demonstration on how to "turn" your dough, please check sch​edule here.

Please email me for an invitation.

Tips on where to find equipment and how to make or buy the starter at end of this post.

TOP TIP: Read all the Instructions first before starting, they may be long but each step is very easy!!

Sourdough Bread


18og Sourdough starter at room temperature

550mls Luke warm water

875g Organic White Bread Flour - Shipton Mill Organic #4 

20g Fine table salt


Large mixing bowl

Large serving spoon

Cling film and 2 x large elastic bands or 2 x disposable shower caps

2 x proving baskets

Large cast iron casserole pot with lid

Very sharp knife or blade


1. Place all the ingredients in the mixing bowl

2. Stir well with a spoon to roughly mix together and as it starts to come together bind together with hands until you have a rough dry ball of dough.

3. Cover with shower cap or clingfilm and leave for 30 mins. This counts as turn 1, you need to do 5 more "turns".

4. After 30 mins. remove clingfilm but set it aside as it will be needed later. You now need to "turn" the dough.  You do this by imagining the dough is a four pronged star and you pull in turn each spike of the star into the middle of the dough. Starting at "12 o'clock" pull the dough into the middle and then turn the bowl 90 degrees in a clockwise direction.  Repeat 12 times. The dough will start to become smooth, when finished turn the dough over so smooth side is on top,  then recover with the clingfilm and leave for 30 mins. (turn 2)

5. After 3o mins repeat stage 4. (turn 3)

6. After 30 mins repeat stage 4. (turn 4)

7.After 30 mins repeat stage 4. (turn 5)

8. After 30 mins repeat stage 4. (turn 6)

9. After 30 mins, turn out the dough onto a floured surface and divide the dough into two halves.

10. Taking each half in turn, First make into a loose ball and then a tight ball. Continue making a tight ball until the bottom of the ball has sealed, place upside down in a floured proving basket.

11.Repeat with the second half of dough.

12. Cover both baskets with the clingfilm or shower caps and place in the fridge for at least 8 hours to rest.

13. When rested, remove from fridge. heat oven to 240 degrees (FAN) and place the casserole pot with lid in the oven to heat up. Let the pot heat up for at least 15 mins at 240 degrees.

14. When the pot is hot, remove from oven, remove lid and lightly dust the hot pot with flour.

15. Remove clingfilm from proving basket.

16. Turn the dough of ball onto your lightly floured hand  and then drop the dough ball into the pot. The ball will now be the right side up.

17. Score  a deep cross across the top with a very sharp blade.

18. Replace the lid on to pot and cook in the oven for 30 mins.

19. After 30 mins, remove the lid and cook for a further 10 mins or until golden brown on 220 degrees.

20. When cooked place on a cooling rack and it will be ready to enjoy in about 1 hour.

21. Repeat for second ball of dough remembering to turn the  oven back up to 240 degrees and heating pot for at least 15 mins before baking.

You can make your own sourdough starter but you may also purchase some from The Store if you are able to collect from the Godalming area.

Proving Baskets and equipment easily found at amazon.com