Saturday, 21 July 2012

Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

With the fantastic festival that is Secret Garden Party at its bloom this very weekend, we thought that perhaps Ma Bicyclette should share with you our very own experience of what is quite clearly one of the best festivals in England!

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

We went a year ago, far before Ma Bicyclette had even been a wandering thought in Nicola Semple's head. But even though we had not joined together as a blog group yet, we had already done some groovy things as friends, Secret Garden Party being a big one! 

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Rachel and I had already been once a few years back and we decided that it should be shared with more of the group. So with that in mind myself, Rachel, Steph H, Nicola and Cristina (plus a few more non-Ma Bicyclettians) got in our cars and drove the 3 hour journey down to Huntington. 

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

The festival itself is set in a huge field with lakes and rivers seperating different parts and this is what makes it so much more magical then any other festival any of us have been to. There are tree houses, woodland forests and dragonfly rave boats in the middle of the lake that can only be reached by boat, and that is just the start! Every inch of the place has had so much care and attention put into it that you feel like you are setting foot into a dreamy theatrical set, with the main characters being your favourite bands!

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of DreamsMa Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

The bands too are always fantastic and well chosen to fit the style of the festival! When Rachel and I first went we got to witness Noah and the Whale when their song '5 years time' came out, and every single time we heard it afterwards we were just transported back to that magical tree house with fairy lights and dancing galore. 

This time, however, one of the main headliners was Blondie and the surrounding area around the main stage was just completely packed out with lobsters and pirates dancing and singing, high on life (and other things!)  

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

We also got to witness Martha Reeves and the Vandellas on the last night, and the whole atmosphere was so surreal with us standing on the hill looking out amongst the people who were just so happy to be there! That is the thing about Secret Garden Party, the people there are like no one else. Everyone is so happy to be alive that there is no bad will, no judgement, no fights - just people so full of joy that the whole place has a big dome of warmth around it, and once you are in you are transformed into the happiest version of yourself you could ever be!

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

The food is also out of this world! Being a vegetarian, it was right up my street! But my fellow friends who enjoy a good bit of meat were also super impressed by the choice available! From super 'hangover blits' smoothies to organic fry-ups, luscious barbecues to super seafood Paella, we were getting out of our sleeping bags purely to see what foods were available! 

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

The prices aren't overly extortionate either, like many festivals can be. The feeling that you get is that people are happy that you want to eat their food and in turn you ARE happy when you eat their food!

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

As you may well know many of us Ma Bicyclette girls are pretty arty farty, and this place is a huge inspiration for us all in that sense! Each year they have different themes on, with the people and areas dressed to meet them! So you will find mad sand sculptures, dancing fairies and workshops that teach you everything from yoga to my favourite, 'How to be happy!' You can also take part if you actually are an artist by having a stall or being part of a magical display, in which case you can get a discount on your tickets, if not get them completely free! 
There are also loads of talented therapists around who can give you a good massage or chakra balancing to help you get your groove back for the raving in the evening (which trust us, you will need!) And if you believe in palm readings or such like there's that too!

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Many of us girls wanted to get a constant reminder of this fantastic festival, by getting a tattoo. I have to say I am a wuss and didn't join in, which I totally regret, but those who did got a lovely dreamcatcher on their wrist from this brilliant little place that was just completely rammed all weekend with people wanting new tattoos (probably the alcohol!) 

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

The tattoo artist must have had 2 hours sleep but was just dolling them out like nobody's business! But that is exactly what the festival does to you - you become almost superhuman (well at least you think you do!)

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

The shops are like no other too! Many of the people who were selling their wares there, I am now following on facebook or blogger - because they were so cool! The jewellery was especially fabulous. I bought a silver amber ring (great for detoxing - quite fitting for the time) which I now NEVER take off. And many of the girls came back with really special presents for themselves and family that are a living memory of the fantastic time we had!

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

I have to admit the whole thing was a blur, but a bloody good one! I like to think that it is from this festival where the true 'Ma Bicyclette' strength came out and we all really joined together as a group! (Well to be honest if you did what we did, you couldn't NOT be friends afterwards!)

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Anyway if you ever get chance to go I would advise it very strongly! I am not sure if we would all go again or whether there are new, undiscovered festivals out there waiting for us to experience - either way only time will tell! But for now, we have some super memories!

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Ma Bicyclette: Secret Garden Party | The Festival of Dreams

Lots of love and magic
Steph B 
x

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