For better or for worse, as Strategist editors and writers, we cannot turn off our shopping brains. With “Saw Something, Said Something”, we’ll be writing about the tiniest of details that have caught our eye — status toothpaste in the background of Lizzo’s TikTok, a plant so rare it’s called a Birkin, or a specific face cream in a Roy sibling’s medicine cabinet.
Since 2019, I have been thoroughly charmed by Florence Pugh’s “Cooking With Flo” videos on Instagram. As she sipped wine and merrily told us how to best utilise bruised tomatoes (don’t dare chuck them; throw them into a nice ratatouille instead), she injected some much needed joy into my miserable pandemic days. During her latest episode in January (“Courgetti Time”), I was struck with two things: (1) It’s finally time to buy a spiralizer and (2) how adorable her little apron was.
It wasn’t the first lovely apron I’d spotted on Pugh (more on that later), but the pinny’s yellow frills looked plucked straight from The Donna Reed Show, and I knew I had to have one of my own. After some fruitless Pinterest and Google searches, I decided to comb through some detailed outfit breakdowns on a Pugh fan page. When I finally spotted the apron, I was crestfallen to discover it was actually a gift from Don’t Worry Darling costume designer Arianne Phillips; she’d even embroidered it with Pugh’s name. As I am not (yet) an A-list actress on a first-name basis with Phillips, I gave up on trying to track down an exact copy and instead sleuthed for some dupes. On Etsy, I was delighted to find a nearly identical one to Pugh’s complete with a sunshiny hue and ’50s-housewife ruffles. I also found a similar apron in a full-body style (for those who want to protect their top half from getting splattered).
At this point, my Pugh-themed sleuthing on Pinterest meant older “Cooking With Flo” episodes popped up on my home page, and I remembered some of her other lovely aprons. I couldn’t stop thinking about the apron from her September 2020 “Sunday Roast” instalment. It had a jolly bumblebee print and vibrant yellow straps. I was enchanted. My hunt began with a reverse image search on Google, and I began to scroll, looking for specifics: printed hand-drawn-looking bees tilted at random angles, a stripy yellow-and-white front pocket, and straps in the same warm yellow hue. Poking through the look-alikes on Amazon and Etsy was fruitless, but then some pages deep in Google, I spotted a site selling the exact apron under a giveaway name: the Florence Pugh Apron. I thought my search was done until I discovered that the Beehive, an American site, didn’t ship internationally. But I now knew the name of the supplier: Boston International. It’s a women-owned design and giftware manufacturer (and it actually has a whole Save the Bees range). As a wholesaler, Boston International’s catalogue is only available to members (was Flo a member, I wondered?). However, it also sold goods through a retail brand called Celebrate the Home, which stocked the apron. Alas, neither site shipped to the UK. I’d hit another dead end.
I was so close now I could almost taste the honey, so I set out to find a UK-based stockist or at least a stockist that would ship to the UK. Armed with the apron’s brand name, I turned back to Amazon and began to sift. Finally, I found a listing under “Boston International”. But I’d been burned before and needed to thoroughly investigate. It had the correct yellow striped pocket, those brilliantly vibrant straps, and the busy-bee print, but to be sure, I painstakingly examined the angle at which every little bumblebee on the apron was tilted to see if they matched up to Florence’s. I was in luck. Finally, after a quest through a spine-chilling number of open tabs, I knew I had found my prize.
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