Welcome to my Garden!!!
When I bought my Watertown cottage, the backyard was just pretty much a blank slate of really nice grass.
There was a beautiful perennial flower bed along the back of the yard that I proceeded to destroy within the first two years that I lived in the house.
The house behind me was completely visible and open to my yard, only separated by a low picket fence. (no privacy at all)
It looked like this!!!!!!!!!!!
And like this!!!!!
How nice is that wagon wheel set on an axle for a rotating table!!!!!!
I better not find any of you guys doing that. IT IS NOT A GOOD LOOK!!!!!
Nice placement in front of the back stoop.
O.K., I admit it, I used the @#$& thing before I had it taken out.
(It was sorta cool)
The design in the back went through a couple of stages before I landed on the one that I fell in love with.
Remember, I bought this house in my 20's, so I went through some growing pains.
I don't have any other pictures of this, so here's one with my dog, the love of my life.
Poor thing, I made her pose to mimic the iron dog on the deck.
What a good sport.
'Course, I had control over her food.
So once I got my head screwed on straight, I realized the way to go was a brick terrace. (Of course, this was after the deck started to rot.)
Somewhere between the wood and the brick, I had the whole back yard filled with plant material, and completely reinvented the space. I like to landscape the same way I do interiors. I think of outside spaces the same way I think of rooms, just a leetle larger. It's nice to have covered shady areas as well as sunny spaces.
Being in magazines isn't all champagne and caviar. Country Home (I think that was the name of the magazine, it was a sister publication to Traditional Home) called me and asked if they could shoot my back yard. I said "SURE!" being so wonderfully agreeable, and in no way a publicity whore. So they had me style and produce the shoot. Then they decided that it didn't look casual, country enough for their magazine. So that was a wasted effort. (At least I don't pay for the photography)
Sooooooo.....They sent the shots over to Trad Ho, who decided THEY liked it, and would pick up the story. BUT, of course, they wanted to redo the shoot, to make it more for THEM!!!!!
I told them that we needed to shoot it before August, 'cuz that's when EVERYTHING starts to look old and sad. (Boy, I know that feeling)
Yes, you're right, this is taking place over a couple of years. Things move at a glacial place in publishing, and then EVERYTHING is a big rush to make deadline.
So they schedule the shoot the last week in July.
On a really hot dry summer.
So everything was brown.
So we had to fake LOTS of stuff.
So, it was NO FUN AT ALL.
AND THEY STILL DIDN'T USE THE @#% photos.
They're kickin' around somewhere in the Traditional Home archives.
If anyone from Traditional Home Magazine is reading this, I HOPE YOU FEEL SORRY FOR ME!!!!!!!
Luckily, House Beautiful did some shots when they covered my cottage, so all was not lost. BUT YOU HAVE NO IDEA WHAT KIND OF PREPARATION GOES INTO A PHOTO SHOOT.
Oy, now I'm yelling.
I mean the fighting over what to put in the @#% window box. OY!
O.K. now I feel better.....
On with the story.
This next picture was done by Eric Roth for the House Beautiful shoot
I think this was shot before the other one. I can't remember which shoot came first.
No, that's right, this one was first, then I recovered the cushions in the red and green stripe.
Here's the Pergola for House Beautiful......
and here it is for Traditional Home (that was never published)
The running around for props.....
I bought that cart just for the shoot!!
Luckily, one of my clients loved it and bought it from me. Then she went and ruined it by painting it a nice clean white. Pristine, unchipped, made it look like NEW.
I mean....I had to go buy cute food......
I mean.....I was forced to go grocery shopping!!!!
I don't own those plates. THOSE ARE NOT MY PLATES!!!
I had to borrow those plates, and silverware, and glasses, and napkins. You think the stuff you see in magazines is real???
(A lot is. Really. Boy, now you guys are going to get me into trouble with all the magazines)
This next shot is of the little shade nook I carved out under the massive maple tree in yard.
O.K. what can I tell you about this?
It's two chaises and a watering can.
photo by Eric Roth for House Beautiful
Here's a shot of the front of my cottage. I added the brick stoop and the little covered porch. There was a house one block over that had a porch similar to this. I loved that porch. So my neighbors let me take pictures and measurements, so that I could draw it up and copy it. I tweaked it a little to make it work for my cottage.
This picture shows me holding McDuff. I took care of him sometimes for my clients and friends, the Hamiltons. This is a rock star dog, as his dad is the base guitar player for Aerosmith.
You wouldn't believe some of the amazing people I've worked for.
Here's my last shot!!!!
photo by Eric Roth for House Beautiful