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Landscape Design

Friday, April 18th, 2014

Road Trip: Greenville, South Carolina

Becky

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You know how sometimes you’re headed to some town you’ve only seen from an interstate highway (near the Peachoid) for a wedding and your expectations are low? This weekend I traveled to Greenville, South Carolina for a wedding and I could not get over how charming and beautiful that town was. I even ran into John Legend twice – go figure!

Once a thriving textile town, Greenville went through a rough patch, but now the downtown area, the west end and the newly developed Swamp Rabbit Trail along the Reedy river are very impressive. Refurbished mills and new construction include design studios, boutiques, restaurants, hotels and art galleries.

At one end of the trail was this cheerful rainbow garden.

Heading downstream (Greenville is along the fall line, so the river is full of falls and gorgeous rocks), I came across this amazing view of tree roots in section.

The Liberty Bridge is a pedestrian bridge that spans the falls and lands you at the West End of town, which is the cool design-centric area. The bridge is supported by two 90-foot masts that hold the one suspension cable. Quite impressive and a beautiful feat of engineering, the bridge was designed by architect Miquel Rosales.

At the West End side of the bridge sits the charming Passerelle Bistro, where patrons can enjoy the view of the falls from the stone patio. There are also nice clean public restrooms around the corner — always a plus on these adventures.

The West End is full of design businesses like Postcard from Paris. Is this a great ghost sign or what? This is a view from the Swamp Rabbit Trail below.

Circling the West End before heading back to the hotel, we came across an old-school Army-Navy store. Then we ran into Legend and his cutie dog Pippa in NoMa Square, which was icing on the cake. Greenville South Carolina is a charming livable city at the foot of the Blue Ridge Mountains that I’m still dreaming about almost a week later. I highly suggest a weekend trip, especially during spring or fall.

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Thursday, March 27th, 2014

Bringing Modern Style To Your Outdoor Space

Becky

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I know some of you poor readers were recently blanketed with even more snow, but it is time to start planning for spring and summer and perking up your outdoor spaces. Since so many of you prefer modern and contemporary styles, here are some easy ways to bring a more modern aesthetic to your outdoor rooms.

Box it in. Square and rectangular planters and benches area an easy way to add clean lines to your patio or porch. Mixing in plants clipped plants with those in their natural forms helps emphasize them as well.

Shop modern outdoor accessories

Add bright bold modern furniture. You can mix more contemporary pieces with traditional outdoor spaces, like farmhouses or log cabin porches. These rockers are a modern take on the traditional Adirondack chair.

Go vertical. Is space tight? Look into planting a vertical garden. While this one is a beautiful professional job that looks like art, it’s easy to add hanging containers like the ones from Wallter. You can even plant edibles in hanging containers.

Light things up with a jolt of neon. Think about what will make your outdoor space an inviting space at night.

via tablet

Give the birds a mod little house.

Add squares. Simple pavers are an inexpensive and easy way to add a modern touch to a path, and help organize the space.

via Clark and Zook Architects, Atlanta

Add a groovy retro fireplace. What I love about Modfire is that it’s portable and much less expensive than hiring a mason. It adds a bold pop of color and will keep you toasty when you want to hang outside on cool nights.

Do you have any plans to modern up your outdoor rooms this spring? Please share them with us in the Comments section. We’d love to see pictures too! We’ll also be adding some of our favorites via Instagram as we come across them on spring house and garden tours.

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Tuesday, July 2nd, 2013

Shop Outdoor!

DesignPublic.com

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Wallter Wall Planter

You may have looked for it before and not quite found it, but now we have our Modern Outdoor section spiffed up and ready for you to browse. Simply look under “Shop By Room” and hit “Outdoor.” Or just click on this image:

We’ve got modern fire. We’ve got modern ways to display plants. We’ve got pots and chairs that light up. There are pieces by iconic designers like Richard Schultz and Ralph Rapson.

Knoll Richard Schultz 1966 Adjustable Chaise Lounge

It’s not all contemporary and modern; we’ve also got beautifully designed furniture for you more traditional types as well, like wood benches from Oxford Gardens.

Oxford Garden Classic Bench 4 Foot

Even if you’re all set on your outdoor furniture, you may want to switch up the look of your deck, patio or porch with something as simple as a colorful new tray or hurricanes.

notNeutral Melamine Tray

So, please, come on over and say hello to our new and improved Outdoor section

Verpan Chairs and Illumesa Table

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Friday, June 21st, 2013

Weekend Project: Prepping the Patio For Summer Fun

Becky

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Wallter Post Planters

DP Peeps, it’s the longest day of the year. Do you know the state your patio (or deck, or balcony) is in? Are the kids still making up school days from all that snow this winter and you just haven’t gotten into the summer groove yet? Well, I’m here to tell you, it’s time to get on on it.

1. How dirty is it? Hose that sucker down, sweep it, leaf-blow if you must. Start with a clean base. Get your mulch and gravel spread out and looking good.

Oxford Gardens Chadwick 5 Foot Swing

2. Where are you going to sit/lounge/chow down? Moving on, what is the state of your outdoor furniture? Will someone need a tetanus shot before they risk it? If so, attack it with the wire brush, steel wool and rustoleum. Wash your outdoor slipcovers and pillows. If it’s too far gone, kick it to the curb and shop. Thanks to all of our great vendors we have a wide selection of outdoor furniture styles from traditional to contemporary.

OFFI Hugo Pots

3. Is there life out there? Did frozen water crack your favorite terracotta pots? Are they full of last year’s dead plants? Order up some cool planters to accessorize the area. Today’s pots light upcan be stuck in the ground,hang from the fences … there are so many cool options.

Oxford Garden Market Umbrella

4. Wanna throw some shade? How’s that umbrella doing? Is it moldy, faded, leaning oddly or unstable? Perk that baby up and clean it, or get a new one.

Modfire Urbanfire + Modpad

5. Ready for those cold and dark nights? Build a fire pit or buy one. It’s amazing how small and portable you can go with fire these days – it’s much easier than it was at camp. Also, be sure to light up your porch. Hurricanes are a great way to light things up with style, inexpensive cafe lights strung overhead make things starry (just make sure they are rated for outdoor use).

Cheers! You’re ready to mix up the white sangria and throw some veggie burgers on the grill (oh yes, almost forgot, make sure your stocked with charcoal or propane)!

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Tuesday, June 4th, 2013

5 Ideas To Perk Up Your Outdoor Space

Becky

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It’s the perfect time of year to perk up your patio, deck, balcony or other outdoor space. Whether it needs a good sweep from all that pollen, you’re sprucing up your furniture with a new coat of paint or hitting the nursery for some new plants, here are a few photos to inspire you with your patio plans. Also, we’d LOVE to see your patio; please shoot us a link to a picture of it in the Comments section if you would like to share off your hard patio work!

By Clark and Zook Architects in Atlanta

Create a not so hard hardscape: It’s amazing what a few well-placed stepping stones and gravel can do. I just love this simple patio from Clark and Zook Architects. Border plantings are enhanced by potted plants. This is a great strategy when you want a little rosemary, mint or basil near the kitchen so you can run out and pick it while you’re cooking especially if you don’t have the space or time for a full kitchen garden.

via flickr member Karol Franks, by designer Corianne Bright

Reuse something unconventional: Usually when we think of plumbing fixtures out in the yard, we think cars up on blocks and old refrigerators can’t be far away, but that is simply not the case with this cast iron claw foot tub full of beautiful plants. I especially love the way they cascade over the sides.  Another favorite planter choice of mine is a big galvanized paint bucket or trough you can pick up for a song at home improvement stores.

via skona hem

Repetition and simplicity makes it modern: If you are starting with a blank slate on your deck or patio, think about doing something very simple. Evenly spaced planters with the same simple shrub or small tree will lend your outdoor space a modern look.

by Vuong Interior Design

Treat your outdoor space like a living room: With the availability of outdoor fabrics and rugs (I have one made from recycled plastic straws myself), there’s no excuse not to get super-comfy in your outdoor space. This Barcelona roofdeck is more inviting than most living rooms thanks to soft fabrics and well-placed accessories.

by Supon Phornirunlit

Light up your outdoor space for nighttime use: My pal Supon Phornirunlit (the brains behind Naked Decor) came up with this gorgeous reflecting pool for his D.C. deck after seeing one like it in a hotel lobby in Thailand.  He added inexpensive chairs, candles set right in the water, elephants with parasols and globe lights to turn up the drama at night. Whether you place hurricanes, floating candles or simple holiday lights around, getting the mood right with your lighting will make your outdoor space inviting for evening gatherings and getting your Zen on.

If you’re ready to do some shopping, check out all the great outdoor products our curators have selected.

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