Browsing Tag

curb appeal


Fall Container Gardens that Would be Perfect for Halloween

fall Halloween planters for your front door

fall Halloween planters for your front door

I was looking for fall planter ideas when I came across two fall arrangements that you can put on your porch during the Halloween season. They do not scream Halloween. Instead, they incorporate colors and elements that we associate with one of the most popular celebrations of the year.

If I have one suggestion, I would gather more gourds around the planter for a more festive effect.

+ Touch of Bronze Рphoto by Thomas J. Story, Julie Chai for Sunset magazine
+ Halloween in a pot – photo by Norm Plate for Sunset magazine


Simplest Magnolia and Boxwood Wreaths

magnolia and fresh boxwood wreaths

A simple square wreath is ideal for a modern home. Depending of your preference, Gardens propose three holiday greenery options. First, the classic Magnolia Grandiflora with its dark green leaves on the front side contrasted with a rich velvet copper back side. You can also get and all green magnolia or a fresh boxwood.

The square wreath are available in 16 inch and 24 inch. If you need a bigger wreath, the round wreaths are available in 30, 36 and 48 inches. Gardens has a store in Austin and a store in Dallas. You can order online. Their prices included shipping within the Continental United States.

+ Square wreaths 16-inch $70, 24-inch $106 USD at Gardens
+ Round wreaths $146 – $316 USD
+ via {frolic!}


The Art of One-Pot Gardening Taught by Sunset Magazine

stunning garden pots by sunset magazine

Sunset magazine is a West Coast lifestyle magazine that I enjoyed reading every time I went to California. I love it so much that I became a subscriber a few months ago. The Sunset gardens are open to the public. The gardens are located at their headquarters in Northern California. I marked it down for my next trip to San Francisco since they are less than 1 hour from there. In fact, I like to go to their Celebration Weekend next year.

If you are lucky to live in a warmer climate, it is not too late to get inspired by these grouping of pots. They would make a statement on your front door. Every time you do a grouping, you must repeat elements. You can vary the heights and shape of the pots but it is usually best to keep your containers all in the same color, same finish.

If you wish to learn the art of pot planting, read:

+ Learn how create a wow factor with a triple decker composition.
+ An easy lesson on selecting pots and flowers that harmonize with the rest of your garden
+ Benefits from experience. Sunset tells you which are the 12 dwarf lavenders that they prefer from all the ones they test in their own garden.
+ Explore fall favorite hues. I love these aqua glass containers.

Putting plants in containers can allow you to rotate the plants that you put inside to create seasonal arrangements. If you are new to gardening, watch this 1-minute video that show you how to plant a container.

+ By Thomas J. Story for Sunset magazine


Lesson in Styling your Front Door from Beacon Hill

styling a front door

This afternoon I visited Beacon Hill, an old British style, upscale neighborhood in Boston. This is one of the are where the houses are the most expensive in Boston. One think I noticed as we walked around is how, even though the houses have no landing, many front doors felt inviting and elegant.

styling a front door :: house in Beacon Hill, Boston

I paid attention to find their secret. It is simple. They all display flower pots, have a stunning door knocker, hardware and street numbers. They are illuminated by a beautiful light. And more importantly, the homeowners have painted the door a contrasting color. Looking at the lack of space of these houses, it is clear that having little space is no excuse to make a statement.


My Interview with Elaine Griffin about Curb Appeal

elaine griffin

elaine griffin

I interviewed Elaine last Wednesday. I received the video today. This is a new kind of public relations / marketing campaign orchestrated by Lowe’s Home Improvement. I was curious to know how it works.

What they did was asking a selected group of bloggers if they wish to interview a personality, in this case New York interior designer Elaine Griffin about a specific topic. Only the topic is fixed, we can ask the questions we like. They scheduled with us a 5 to 10-minute interview at a set time. The interview is recorded live. Two or three days later, they send us a copy of the video for our own use. They also published the video on their site which means that you do not have to host the video on your server (you save on bandwidths).

It feels different taking the role of the live interviewer. I usually run my interviews by email, face to face or on the phone. If you participate in a similar interview, do not forget, as I did, to open the live feed before they phone you. With the live feed on, I could have seen Elaine. I saw that being the interviewer has its own set of challenges.

Tips about Curb Appeal

I tried to ask questions that would be useful to you. Curb appeal is important as this is the first thing your guests see when they visit you. We talked about ideas that you can do on a budget, without major renovations. Click to start the video.

I hope you liked it. Doing it over again, I may shorten the number of questions so everything fits inside 5 minutes.

+ Elaine Griffin