A favorite past time here in the Hudson Valley is antique shopping. There are endless shops and flea markets to satisfy the collector and crafter alike. As a gardener, I love when I can incorporate pieces into the landscape.
This old wood burning stove wasn’t purchased at an antique shop, but was a piece we actually used in our home when we first got married. It didn’t work efficiently, so we removed it years ago. We didn’t have the heart to toss it because it held some sentimental value for us as it was given to us from a family member, so a few years ago, my husband placed it in my garden. Last year, I found this neat copper kettle to place on top and the opening at the top of the stove was perfect for planting a sprawling plant like this Portulaca.
Some people are intimidated by incorporating these things into the garden or landscape, but it can add an eclectic feel with just a little planning. Think window displays. By creating a “scene” with several antiques gathered together, you can transform an empty corner of the yard into a unique focal point, or try using natural elements (such as bricks or stone) to create a path leading up to a stand alone piece. Stand alone antiques can also be transformed into new creations. Here’s an example of things I’d gathered over the years. With a little elbow grease and a can of spray paint, these pieces were turned into a little seating area near the vegetable garden.
When designing indoors, using multiple pieces, you generally unify a look by using paint and fabric but when outdoors, you can create the same unity with outdoor elements and pants – pine needles, bark, stone, plants, and flowers. This is where your color and texture will come in.