Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Bring the Garden Inside

HAPPY SUMMER!

It's hot, hot, hot in DC, and I'm staying in, in, in. Now is the time to enjoy the gardens from inside. And, now is the time to catch up on my myrtle topiary plants: trimming, repotting, and fertilizing.

There's a reason why I am so devoted to the topes. Actually, there are many but, for this post, I'll narrow it down to just this one: they are mini evergreen gardens for inside the home. This is especially welcomed when it is too hot or cold to work outside. With careful shaping and nurturing, topiaries become more than houseplants, they are elevated to civilized yet humble living sculptures.

Along with myrtles, I try to infuse our home with pots, statues and other ornaments that have gathered a layer of moss and lichen from sitting outdoors. Introducing this earthy patina into our Swedish palette adds organic charm and warmth to the cool tones. It also creates harmonious flow between house and garden.

Let's dig around the shop for a bit of garden inspiration!
ABOVE: Cute meets industrial in this potting shed-inspired vignette. A grouping of 19th-century botanicals hangs over a tablescape of myrtle topiary, vintage concrete squirrel and child's watering can on an 18th-century Swedish Gustavian table. The sweetness is tempered by the galvanized stool and basket along with the utilitarian tools made for the English lady gardener. While I wouldn't have the vintage tools lining the walls of a drawing room, they would surely add charm to a mudroom or back hall - so handy, too, on the way out for a little gardening.

BELOW: What better way to bring in the garden than botanicals with pretty blooms the entire year! The frames on these classic English prints have a gray finish highlighted with a tinge of silver for an updated look that's fresh. And this early painted duck, in an animated grazing position, adds whimsy to the perennial border or inside on a table, chest, bookshelf, etc.
Speaking of whimsy, this pair of painted concrete faux-bois planters would make any room feel less formal. They would be fun with vibrant blooms or more naturalistic with verdant ferns. The pots sit on a Belgian console table with a stone-like painted top and sculptural lyre ends.
More myrtle topes, more faux bois! While most faux-bois (false wood) pieces were made in France during the early 1900s, this charming birdbath is from England. It pays tribute to poet Dorothy Frances Gurney (1858 -1932) with this verse from her poem God's Garden:

The kiss of the sun for pardon,
The song of the birds for mirth,
One is nearer to God's heart in the garden
Than anywhere else on earth.
I know, I know - my topiary addiction is out of control!! 

Moving on....let's check out this Ca. 1920s cast composition statue of Venus at the bath. Venus is in terrific condition with an authentic patina. Do you have a corner in your home for her?
More ducks :) Here is an embracing pair sure to make you smile.
What's the easiest way to bring the garden in? Freshly picked flowers, especially this time of year, are a must! I adore the fluffy white blooms on these Annabelle Hydrangeas from our garden.
I've cut generous bunches of Annabelles for our shop, as well. Here is an arrangement on a pale-blue Swedish chest. The antique egg prints are English, and so is the marble urn that I converted into a lamp.
Notice the acanthus carving on the marble urn.
BELOW: A cast composition footed pinecone finial ready to add a bit of patina to your vignette - use it where visual weight is needed or where a masculine accent is desired.
Those of you following along on Instagram will recognize this arrangement of Halcyon Hostas and Minnie Pearl Phlox in a Chinese blue-and-white pot - I shared it in early June. BTW, the arrangement lasted almost a week.

The Midcentury Modern pedestal table has a glass top over a lucite base. It looks especially chic juxtaposed next to an English Chinoiserie armchair with ornate fretwork backrest. The armchair is part of a dining set of eight. 
For more inspiration, please come visit the shop!
Cheers,
Loi

45 comments:

  1. I'm the first one? I don't ever seem to get your posts but something told me to look! Just gorgeous as always Loi! Happy Summer! xoxo

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  2. I so look forward to visiting your shop one day! I think I need to try my hand with a myrtle!!

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  3. Your hydrangeas are gorgeous! Love the photo of your beautiful kitchen with your sink full of hydrangeas. Pinning
    Sally

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  4. your blog posts are always such eye candy.

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  5. I love your topiaries! I wish I had the green thumb and patience for my own they are just so pretty.

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  6. Oh Loi, you and I both are having a love fest with the Anna Belle hydrangeas!!!!!!! I took out my basket and shears yesterday donning a silly garden hat (gotta protect this skin!) and clipped away. I love these fluffy blooms, and you have the perfect kitchen sink to display them.

    We are staying cooler than average AGAIN this summer, but it's lovely. I think it's a great idea you stay IN IN IN! Be well, have fun, laugh, giggle and play. Much love to you! Anita

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  7. My myrtle is hanging in there...so happy....when you have a good thing going, you just can't have enough of them I say!....I am crushing over each and every garden statue...love that amazing birdbath and swooning, swooning over the acanthus marble urn lamp!!! Stay cool Loi...or should I say cooler than you are!!! :)

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  8. Everything is SO beautiful!! I just read to "dip the hydrangeas in "alum" and very warm water to make them last..... franki

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  9. Everything is so beautiful and elegant! Your hydrangeas are divine, Enjoy the sunshine!

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  10. love the poem by Dorothy Frances Gurney + great pictures. xxpeggybraswelldesign.com

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  11. Hi Loi, Stay cool, cool, cool-------everything looks gorgeous. xoxoxox Mary

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  12. Loi, everything, everything in this post is more than beautiful! I love your topiaries and I agree they are inside evergreens. I had a pair of myrtle topiaries a while back. They didn't survive the transfer indoors when Fall arrived. You've inspired me to try again! Love those chairs and the poem.

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  13. I love the mornings when I get my email that you have a new post! I got up rather late this morning, but have enjoyed reading and seeing the post while I had my coffee. Your topiaries are magnificent! You could never have too many!
    Venus is gorgeous! One day I hope to visit your shop. It's on my Bucket List.
    Stay cool...it's too early to be this hot!!
    xo
    Patty

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  14. Loi,
    You brought the garden indoors beautifully. I love the squirrel and other concrete items you've shared. Venus is wonderful, I love that she's worn in spots. What do you fertilize your topiary with? I've recently received a couple of ivy topiary that I want to keep indoors year round. I generally put them in a protected atrium where they can recover if they begin to look sad.
    Beautiful vignettes, as always.
    xo,
    Karen

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  15. Loi,
    A delightful post and I never grow tired of your gorgeous topiaries. We too in Philadelphia are experiencing the 3 H's, hot, humid and Hazy. Lingering inside in the central air is where I like to be. Your garden statuary is impressive as is your pretty Annabelles.
    xo,
    Vera

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  16. Loi, I am literally grinning, YOUR home and shop always bring a gentle grin to my face. Gentle because of the calm pleasure it always brings me, thank you for being YOU and for sharing your beauty and talents with us here in blogland. Happy Week to you and Tom,
    Kathysue

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  17. Loi, I echo what Kathysue said above. Your shop and home are beautiful beyond words. The serene feeling of each of these vignettes is the perfect way to spend a little time, coffee in hand, relaxing on my own sunporch. I'm in awe of your myrtle topiary plants. I need to find some of these! Do they need bright light? The garden vignette is my favorite. Crushing on that concrete squirrel and child's watering can, not to mention the beauty of the hydrangeas. Thanks for sharing all this beauty!

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  18. Loi, I am obsessed with this whole post. Your staging and photography skills are out of this world. I am so in love with that Venus statue. When I started gardening two years ago, I went through every single one of your gardening posts. I learned so much from you and now I am like a little old gardening lady with my straw hat digging holes every day in my backyard.

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  19. Loi you are such a temptress! If only I could come visit! Love all of the faux bois, and of course your amazing topiaries. So many tempting vignettes...anyone living within two hundred miles of D.C must be tempted to hop in the car!!

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  20. I literally cannot express how much I love EACH AND EVERY photo!! You are an artist with so many skills!! Such a star! xoxo, K

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  21. Loi, I adore your trimmed topiaries. They are so well done! Did you bring them on from little plants? It takes a long time to get them looking like yours! I am all for bringing the garden inside. I am continually potting up gorgeous plants - even annuals and bringing them inside for a while. I also love bringing bulbs inside. I would so love to visit your beautiful shop one day! Didn't know it gets so hot in DC. xoxo

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  22. Loi, you must have the patience of a saint to be able to nurture and care for your topiaries so well. We kill everything we buy so we're in awe of people like you. Those Annabelle hydrangeas are beyond and paired with pale blue... lovely! Stay cool and enjoy your time indoors.
    xxoo
    C + C

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  23. The Faux Bois is fabulous !! Love all your vignettes!xo K

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  24. Where do I even start with what I love in this post? The topes, yes; the faux bois, yes...and the hydrangeas piled up in the sink -- Love! Beautiful, Loi!

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  25. Hi Loi,

    You have a way with topiary, for sure! Everything is beautiful. I keep going back to look at the photos--instant relaxation for me. Happy summer!

    xo,
    Deborah

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  26. You need to have a television show, Loi! You are just that talented!
    Love all flowers, in any form, and you have chosen some beauties here.
    Teresa
    xoxo

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  27. Hi Loi, I love the cement pieces, the ducks, the pots, the finial pinrcone/artichoke , and I agree with you on a piece that is needed for a weight line to that piece of display... I picked up a couple of cannon ball finials that top of a cement colum I love them just palced about my home.
    Adding that perfect weight line and great conversation.

    Love your shop, and all the uniqueness you share, your kitchen and the white hydrangeas looks amazing in you're country farmhouse sink, it's all speaks to me in a romantic quiet whisper of beauty.

    See you soon and all you inspire.

    Xx
    Dore

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  28. Well, if only I could visit your shop! I just love all the faux bois pieces, and the myrtle topiaries set off your statuary so well. Charming vignettes you've created Loi, with the perfect mix of textures - completely picture perfect! x

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  29. Hi, Loi - That's a brilliant job you did, making the urn into a lamp. I like the added top, the patina and the final shape. Nice job!

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  30. Hello Loi, The way you bring in the outdoors with plants and gardening implements and artifacts is great--it takes your already bright and airy look and opens it up even more. A great patina develops on those pieces left to age outdoors.
    --Jim

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  31. Loi, you created the most beautiful ways to bring garden antiques inside. Beautiful, serene, the perfect mix of texture and color. Thank you for sharing your antique pieces and talent with all of us. Happy Summer!

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  32. What a beautiful post, Loi! And the shop is full of treasures as usual. (Sigh.) Hope you and Tom have a wonderful summer! xo

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  33. topiaries love you! what a gift you possess, and how gratifying to share it with the world. the pale blue chest is exquisite, loi. if money was no object, i would have a maker replicate two of them for our new master bath since i would love to look at them everyday. i will trade you weather-wise. dude, i'm tropical, and it feels like autumn up in here! keep nurturing those magical myrtles that bring heaven closer.

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  34. Hi Loi, your store displays look beautiful..I love your topiaries! I wish I had a green thumb..they would be all over my house. Do you have any secrets on how to care for them?

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  35. I've always loved your topiary collection Loi! Loooove how you pair/style your shop items! xx

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  36. This post made me feel cooler than I have felt in days! All the soft color in this heat was a reprieve. I always love your post Loi! Hope you are enjoying summer! ox

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  37. Love all of your garden items, Loi, especially the galvanized stool! Happy 4th to you and Tom!

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  38. I adore your topes Loi! Beautiful photos as usual. Happy 4th And stay cool- all this rain has kept our mowing constant and the weeds in the paddock are as tall as Thomas! Take care - miss you! Xo Nancy

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  39. Loi, happy summer! I hope that you are enjoying a fabulous summer so far. Do you have big plans for the 4th?

    I love this post! Beautiful finds for the garden and home.

    Have a great day and a safe holiday.

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  40. Loi, I love all your posts! I feel like I'm getting a wonderful tour by you. Also, what is your secret in regards to care of your myrtle topiaries? Are they proned to spider mites? I would love to know you green thumb insights. :)

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  41. Hi Loi,
    Happy Summer!!! It's sweltering up her in NY today, too! Summmah time! Loving everything here. Never too many topiaries!!! Your myrtles are just perfect. I have purply blue hydrangeas coming up everywhere in my garden. It's still a work in process, as some things didn't like the amount of water I have, but fun to see it evolve. Just spent the weekend with a dear friend who lives in D.C….and need her to come see/meet you!!!

    Cheers, as always!
    xoxo Elizabeth

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  42. As always, so much exquisite beauty here, dear Loi! We are sweltering too, but this these vignettes are refreshing and inspirational...
    I love all of the greens, flowers, and of course, whymsy...
    Stay nice and cool...I will now catch up with the posts I've missed... )
    xoxo
    - Irina

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  43. Charming, charming, charming! Love that galvanized stool, all the faux bois , lucite pedestal table and of course, your gorgeous topes and hydrangeas!

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  44. This is the precise weblog for anybody who needs to seek out out about this topic. You notice so much its almost arduous to argue with you. You positively put a brand new spin on a subject that's been written about for years. Nice stuff, simply nice!

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Many thanks for your visit! If you have a question, please leave a comment and I will do my best to answer. Loi