Posts Tagged 'outdoor'

Weber Ain’t Got Nothin’ On This.

Move over Weber. At least for Christmas. Eva Solo’s Glove BBQ Grill is one sexy beast and sure to dress up any porch, patio or perch for fashionable grilling. The integrated stainless-steel lid on this handsome, globe-shaped kettle grill can slide open and closed to protect grilling grub from the elements. The black bottom half is made of aluminum. At $595, it may be a bit more then you would like to spend on a steak searing machine… but some of you gift givers might like it hot.


globe_grill_1 globe_grill_cover globe_grill_open

Bringing out the Animal in Your Garden.

I am a lifetime lover of the leopard. Seriously. Lifetime. Zebra patterns interest me, but I go gagaaga for those spots. And if I had a yard (like the one I used to have and really cared for. I mean really cared for. The grass loved me.}, I would certainly be stylish on the outside as much as I am indoors with this leopard print covered garden hose. This printed slipcover slides over any 25′ or 50′ garden hose and makes it a delight to water those seedings. Or hose down the dirty dog. The neighbors WILL get jealous. You animal you.

hose clothes garden leopard couture


DIY Outdoor Game of Chess.

It’s outdoor time and half of you are potting new lavender petunias (fav color) or laying herringbone brick paths (fav pattern). My urban patio is perfectly primed for warm weather chhiilliin’ but if I actually had a lawn to mow, I’d be spending next weekend preparing my garden game of chess. Got a lawn and no plans? Go here, here, and here to have classy game K+night outdoors fit for a queen and kind.

outdoor garden game of chess

Learn how to set up the perfect chess board layout considering the lightness of the design, view from the side, seating, and storage for the pieces at A simple layout diagram is shown below.

outdoor chess set diagram

And don’t forget the playing pieces and benches. I love the beautiful upscale teak forms add natural vibes to a check board pattern.

teak chess pieces

Not into the game but looking for an artistic touch? Check out Grandin’ Roads Chess Yard Art for their Stonecast beauties.

stone cast chess pieces art

Check mate.

It’s National Poison Prevention Week!

As pet parents honor this week by assessing animal toxins in their homes, the ASPCA wants to remind us to take care when planning (or planting) their springtime gardens, too. Our furry friends can come in to alot of danger when accidentally ingesting or coming into contact with garden-related products, insecticides, weed killers and pet-toxic plants.So, let’s save our furry family members with some helpful and healthy tips from the ASPCA.

  • When designing and planting your green space, keep in mind that many popular outdoor plants—including sago palm, rhododendron and azalea—are toxic to cats and dogs, and may cause liver failure or heart problems. These are blooming now so keep puppies and elderly pups at bay.
  • When walking your dog, take care to keep Fido off the grass and away from toxic lawn and garden products. Cocoa mulch—a byproduct of chocolate—is especially problematic because it attracts dogs with its sweet smell and can cause them gastrointestinal distress or more serious neurological problems if consumed in large quantities.

Continue reading ‘It’s National Poison Prevention Week!’

Outdoor Design Tips from the WDC Experts.

It’s Outdoor Week at the Washington Design Center! On Tuesday, a very creative panel of experts talked about  how homeowners can create outdoor spaces that complement the overall architecture of their homes. The panel included Anthony Cusat of McHale Landscape Design, Elizabeth Norman of Elizabeth Norman Landscaping, Jay Graham of Graham Landscape Architecture, and interior designers Barbara Hawthorn and Dana Tydings. Here is what progressed from this insightful event. (transcribed from the Home & Design website post):

Q: What is the best way to formulate a plan for furnishing my outdoor spaces?

A: Elizabeth Norman. The first thing to do is to determine how you live in and use the space. On a recent job, my client was trying to do everything—read, relax, play and entertain—in a small space. We took all the furniture out and didn’t put it back unless it solved a problem.

Q: What are some of the challenges homeowners face when embarking on an outdoor project?

A: Barbara Hawthorn I ask clients, “How do you envision using this space? How many months will you really use it?” One of the challenges is making a space attractive during its fallow time, designing for all seasons. I tell clients to have the philosophy that “it is going to grow with me.” The fact that it is going to take time [for a landscape to mature] is one of the hardest things to convey.

Barbara Hawthorn created a sultry evening setting complete with a fire element offering warmth and light.

Barbara Hawthorn a beautiful evening setting complete with a fire element for warmth and light.

Q: How can I be sure that my interior style will marry with my outdoor furnishings plan?

A: Dana Tydings. In a perfect world, you would meet with your landscape designer and your interior designer at the same time. People don’t realize that if they are working together, they can save you time and money.

Q: What is the difference between a garden and a landscape?

A: Jay Graham. A garden is very dynamic. It changes constantly and you engage with it. A landscape is an established setting for your house.

A: Elizabeth Norman. A landscape flows into a bigger vernacular, into the surrounding geography. A garden sits within the landscape. It quakes and moves all the time. It changes color daily in small ways and in big ways four times a year.

Q: What should I look for in an outdoor fabric?

A: Barbara Hawthorn. There are so many new fabrics now. They are incredibly easy to clean and don’t limit your versatility. The new solution-dyed acrylics are resistant to sunlight, rain, and discoloration from falling leaves.

Q: How can I stick to a budget and use the latest designer fabrics?

A. Dana Tydings. The newest outdoor fabrics are not inexpensive. At $60 to $80 a yard, you should order them sparingly. Do it in stages and do it right.

A: Barbara Hawthorn. Be sure to include welting in the seams to be sure cushions are durable.

A: Elizabeth Norman. You can jazz up affordable fabrics in solids and stripes with pillows in more expensive patterns. I like to change pillows seasonally.

Q: What types of elements should an effective landscape include?

A: Jay Graham. Thinking about how the landscape itself is “furnished” is important. I like to design low walls in a landscape that can be used used for sitting, dining and putting drinks on even when the furniture is put away.

Q: How can lighting enhance my landscape design?

A: Anthony Cusat. Low-voltage lights create a nice, warm glow. The new LED lights have warmer tones now. It’s very beautiful to up-light trees, such as crape myrtles, from below. Or you can add moonlighting by installing LED lights in the trees, shining down.

Q: What are some trends in outdoor living spaces?

A: Anthony Cusat. We build a lot of outdoor kitchens with grills, sinks, refrigerators and beverage centers as well as wine-tasting gardens that connect to a pool house.

Q: How can I create an eco-friendly garden?

A: Elizabeth Norman. It used to be really hard to have an organic garden. Now, Lowe’s organic department is as big as its conventional one. Ask professionals for plants that don’t need poisons to look good. And remember that some organic products are just as poisonous as their conventional counterparts.

My Old Crew at the Capitol Home & Garden Show.

I used to manage marketing initiatives for well-known landscape design firm, Wheat’s Landscape,  based out of Vienna,Virginia. I’ll be visiting my old friends on Friday to get a glimpse of the hard work their design crew today completed for this weekends Capitol Home & Garden Show. From this sneak peek of the Wheat’s Landscape’s display as seen in the below images, it looks like it’s going to be a great success!

Wheat's Landscape booth at the Capitol Home & Garden Show

Mark Finlayson is the designer behind this massive temporary outdoor oasis. He  recently received recognition in Home & Design Magazine’s top 100 designers. Way to go Mark! Way to go team! Rock on with your rad selves!

Wheat's Landscape fountain at the Capitol Home & Garden Show

And for all of you looking for Springtime inspiration this weekend, head out to the Dulles Expo Center in Chantilly for a Wheat’s treat. And get your Springtime feeling started.

Wheat's landscape rock wall and trellis at the Capitol Home & Garden show

The Hunt Goes Outdoors with Holly.

I’m really like Holly Hunt’s outdoor furniture collections. My vendor list for outdoor accessories and furnishings seems to grow and grow each season with the addition of new and high quality outdoor and casual indoor furniture lines. Holly Hunt’s teak and powder-coated metal pieces have a tailored and fresh contemporary palette and are hand-crafted to last a lifetime. Open the windows and doors wide and see for yourself… for years to come.

Banyan Sofa

Banyan Sofa

Boardwalk Stone Side Table

Boardwalk Stone Side Table

St. Croix Chaise

St. Croix Chaise

Andros Barstool

Andros Barstool

St. Barts Alta Dining Table

St. Barts Alta Dining Table

St Croix Armless Lounge Chair

St Croix Armless Lounge Chair

St. Croix Round Dining Table

St. Croix Round Dining Table

St. Croix Dining Arm Chair

St. Croix Dining Arm Chair

Grand Finale Sale at Grandinroad!

Wire confections for outdoor furnishings have always been on my Top Ten list. I think it’s the nostalgic material, sculptural beauty and colorful powder-coated finish that makes them most attractive. The Cecelia Collection, a contemporary nod to the 1950’s style wire furniture, is on sale at GrandinRoad and would be oh-so-cute on an urban balcony or nestled among planted palm near the pool (think Miami beach here girls and guys). There are three colors to choose from! The $199 table includes the sculpted base and tempered glass top. And for only $119, you’ve got yourself a seat to sit in (add the outdoor seat cushions for just $19 more).

Cecelia Chair, $119 plus $19 for cushion |

Outdoor Cecelia Chair, $119 plus $19 for cushion |

Outdoor Cecelia Table, $199 |

Outdoor Cecelia Table, $199 |

People, you know this deal is not going to last. I know the stock sure won’t. Get on the wire. Fast!

Weatherproof Rooms.

To have a porch is divine. It’s surely good for the soul. Some homeowners take their porches for granted and use it as storage or a place to stash thrash. Not me. I would love love love to create an outdoor space at my home that can be used year-round.

These large opening panel doors are divine!

These large opening panel doors are divine!

The pinks and greens are upbeat and the furnishings add decorative details to a partially open outdoor space.

The pinks and greens are upbeat and the furnishings add decorative details to a partially open outdoor space.

In our mid-Atlantic East Coast climate, my ideal outdoor room would include a large fireplace, unique outdoor rugs, accent pillows, durable and comfy upholstered lounge chairs and sofas, recessed lights, lamps, candles, wireless speakers, mirrors, potted plants, and all the friends you can muster over.

My idea of simplicity. Very cool outdoor fireplace!

My idea of simplicity. Very cool outdoor fireplace!

It's black. It's white. And it's delightful. To die for views!

It's black. It's white. And it's delightful. To die for views!

SO updated. So fresh. So clean. Sign me up.

SO updated. So fresh. So clean. Sign me up.

A clean space that truly is both indoors and out.

A clean and pretty space that truly is both indoors and out.

This sloped ceiling sends natural light to the center of the room.

Love the brightness. This sloped ceiling sends natural light to the center of the room.

When the winds pick up late in the fall, just shut outdoor blinds, pull drapery closed, or roll-down clear panels to help keep the warm air in and cool drafts out.

Love the streamlines iron rod furnishings and cream paint colors.

Love the streamlines iron rod furnishings and cream paint colors.

I can see this simple and sweet porch on one of the cute Arlington Cape Cods or Bungalows.

I can see this simple and sweet porch on one of the cute Arlington Cape Cods or Bungalows.

It’s quite a luxury to be able to have a space like this but I am a diehard for blending indoors and out, so a retreat that mixes the best of both worlds sings my praises… t0 Mother Nature.

Take me to the mountain tops! What a treat this would be!

Take me to the hilly deserts! What a treat this would be!

A little bit of eastern asian influence and I'm OMing it all day and night.

A little bit of eastern asian influence and I'm OMing it all day and night.

This is an ideal design. I'll take the dogs too please.

This is an ideal design. I'll take the dogs too please.

Images used are from various magazines and online sources.

Trina Turk & Caicos Style.

It’s fast approaching late July and although trends and fashions for fall are creeping into to our consumer channels, I’m happily still immersed in the sunny days of summer. One of my projects has included looking for outdoor fabrics for a close client of mine. When I again stumbled upon Trina Turk’s line of exotic and juicy outdoor fabrics for a collaboration with Schumacher & Co., I was reminded of the good ol’ days of Popsicle’s, pale blue bicycles, lazing in the grass and building sand castles on the beach. Or a vacation in Turks & Caicos. =0) What kind of memories do these beautiful patterns and colors bring you?

Just a Thought.

"A person should design the way he makes a living, around how he wishes to make a life" — Charlie Byrd

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