From front room festivals to cottagecore: 10 lockdown trends to embrace this summer | The sublime time – aperitivo hour


Celebrating aperitivo hour
Gin has taken its place as one of the most popular drinks during lockdown. In the early days it formed the basis of many a #quarantini – made from whatever we might have left in the cupboard. Since then, the hashtag has clocked up more than 87,000 posts and the term has passed into the popular lexicon. Now, take it a notch higher for the ultimate cocktail moment. With Malfy Gin, you can create the most authentic Italian style aperitivo hour.

Try a Malfy Gin Rosa G&T by mixing a measure of Malfy Gin Rosa with Mediterranean tonic in a copa glass over ice and garnishing with a pink grapefruit wheel. Or, for an added touch of sophistication, mix a measure of Malfy Gin Rosa with 50ml prosecco and 50ml San Pellegrino Arraciata Rossa over ice in a wine glass, and garnish with an orange wheel, strawberry slice and sprig of thyme to create a Amalfi Sunset Spritz.

Front-room festivals
If you missed glamping it up at Glasto or living it up at Latitude this summer, there’s nothing to stop you recreating that festival feeling right in your front room. This year, with staycations booming, boutique bell tents are all the rage, and whether you’re a Hyde Park regular, or head to the Isle of Wight every summer, you don’t have to miss out. Pitch your tent in the garden – or indoors if it’s raining – swing open the patio doors, pour yourself a Malfy Gin and tonic, and cue up your festival playlist. Designer wellies optional.

Upcycling
Nesting has taken on new meaning as we’re spending more time than ever at home, meaning that we are looking to make our personal spaces as cosy and reassuring as possible. With major home improvement projects put on hold, we’re looking at subtler ways to spruce up our living spaces, often going hand-in-hand with the crafts we’ve taken up to help while away our extended free time. Repurposing old units and reupholstering much-loved chairs are at the top of many DIY lists – and when it comes to themes and patterns, rainbows and bright, uplifting shades are the order of the day.

Micro garden parties
With our close friends and family having been out of bounds for so long, we’re getting to know the neighbours. WhatsApp groups for individual streets and blocks of flats are springing up across the country as we look closer to home for friendship, support and entertainment.





Scaled-down garden parties comprising small groups of neighbours dressing up and bringing over their own food and drinks – nibbled and sipped at a respectful distance – make for eclectic gatherings and unexpected new friendships being forged.

Staying ‘in-in’
Now we can no longer go “out-out” – and with loungewear fatigue firmly setting in – summer is about dressing up for virtual socialising. Many of us are seeing more of our friends than ever as we plan regular catch-ups via online video calling, from family quizzes to propping up a virtual bar with friends, while Royal Ascot 2020 saw thousands of us donning fascinators in front of the TV in aid of frontline charities. So as the weather warms up, it’s time to cast off your lockdown look and raise a glass of Malfy Gin in style.

Locally sourced picnics
With public transport still only used for essential travel and some of our favourite parks and gardens closed, we’re exploring the green spaces closer to home for a suitable patch of grass on which to spread our blankets.

The best-dressed picnic baskets are filled with treats that support local producers, from honey collected by local beekeepers and veg from the farmer’s market, to unique small-batch cheeses and British charcuterie sliced on to artisanal sourdough. Explore your local high street to see what gems you can unearth.

Home cooking with a little help
Once we realised how much mess keeping a sourdough starter alive entails, the appeal of devoting ourselves to becoming expert home chefs faded fairly fast. With more food businesses pivoting to offer meal kits designed to be finished off at home for that personal touch, there’s no better time to start enjoying gourmet food delivered to your door (without worrying about it getting cold). For a taste of Italy, Pasta Evangelists offer artisan pasta and sauces via next-day delivery across the UK, which can be whipped up at home in minutes. With dishes inspired by culinary traditions found across Italy, from Venice to Sicily, you can be taken on a foodie journey with all the taste and minimum effort.

Growing lupins
Since lockdown began, gardening has shot up in popularity, with garden centres opening some time before other non-essential businesses. From window sills to flower beds, this summer is about attempting to turn green spaces into a riot of colour to rival the rainbows pinned in people’s windows, and the West Country Lupin has been particularly popular. Packed with uplifting colour, lupins are easy to grow and soothing to look at, making them the ideal flower to plant this summer.

Virtual destination tours
Grounded globetrotters are fulfilling their wanderlust by taking virtual tours of some of the world’s most stunning spots. Choose from tours offering 360-degree views of popular destinations such as Tokyo or Machu Picchu, or watch a live stream from San Diego Zoo or California’s Monterey Bay Aquarium.

You can even take a treadmill walk through the Colosseum – made even more authentic by concocting a refreshing gin spritz with Malfy Gin Rosa to take with you on your virtual tour.

Cottagecore
Anyone not ensconced in a countryside pad with an acre or two of garden attached is currently looking enviously towards the idyllic-looking lockdowns of those who are. As even the most ardent city-dweller wrests with sourdough starters and homemade crumpets, we’re being calmed by a trend that has been dubbed “cottagecore” – an aesthetic oozing with images of perfect-looking pies, vases filled with wildflowers and verdant countryside. Get the look by adding some floral frocks or shirts to your wardrobe.

Malfy Gin is available to purchase in selected Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Morrisons, Asda, M&S, Waitrose and Co-op stores, as well as Ocado and the Malfy Gin Amazon brand store

Please drink Malfy Gin responsibly. For the facts, visit drinkaware.co.uk

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