15 Fall Decorating Ideas From Great Country Homes

You do not need to get a property in the country to steal a few style tips from these casually elegant homes. Full of heritage and brimming with fine good looks, country house design is more about mood, colours and textures compared to the flash of a fancy house. Below you will find 15 decorating suggestions to channel country house style no matter where you live.

Anthony Baratta LLC

1. Equestrian artwork. Prizewinning racehorses and show horses have had their portraits painted since time immemorial — riffle through flea market stalls and stalls at antiques fairs to locate your own slice of equestrian background in the form of a classic horse painting. Or, to get a budget-friendly option, track an oversize equestrian art book and slice out a few pages to frame.

2. Potted topiary. Grace that your entryway with a cluster of neatly trimmed topiary in urns. If you can set the strands beneath a round or hexagonal table in the center of a foyer, better.

Kass & Associates

3. Rich red doors. More sophisticated compared to the red of barns and deeper than the vivid, clear red of church doors, this red is much more akin to a fine wine. Look for a red paint with a touch of purple, like the rich burgundy displayed here.

Deep reddish paint picks for doors

BHSDesign

4. Plaid upholstery. Re-cover an old armchair, an ottoman or a love seat in classic wool plaid for a cozy look that begs one to sink in and sit awhile. Not interested in reupholstering? Fold and drape a plaid throw on the trunk and back of your seat instead.

Toronto Interior Design Group | Yanic Simard

5. Suitcases as a nightstand. Stack up hard-sided vintage suitcases to get a unique bedside dining alternative with personality to spare.

6. Menswear eyeglasses and prints. Handsome houndstooth, wool tweed and shirting fabrics are made for country living. Dress your bed in layers of these delicious cloths to get a textural treat.

Crisp Architects

7. Copper pots on screen. Nothing appears so tempting in the kitchen for a row of gleaming copper pots hung over the cooker. Even though, to keep them shiny, you might want to hang yours within the kitchen island rather.

8. Pitchers filled with flowers. Enamelware and creamy ironstone pitchers of all sorts, new and classic, create excellent and easy flower holders. Plunk in a huge armful of blooms or a bundle of autumn branches, and you are done.

Crisp Architects

9. A bowlful of apples. It is so straightforward, we must all do that one! Rather than maintaining bowls of fruit relegated to the kitchen, pile fresh, crisp apples in a nice wooden bowl and set it on the coffee table.

Crisp Architects

10. Gray-green walls. Rich, historic and more complicated than green or grey independently, gray-green changes beautifully with the light. Use this hue in a dining area, kitchen or small sitting area, with off-white trim. The paint color used here’s French Gray 18 from Farrow & Ball.

Smith & Vansant Architects PC

11. Monograms. Towels that are monogrammed say country home … same with silver or pillowcases or whatever else you can place your initials on. For couples who share a last name, try out a monogram using your last initial as the center letter, together with your first initials on each side.

Huestis Tucker Architects

12. Luxurious laundry area details. Gleaming bin brings, light blue-gray paint and chic accessories (like a glass jar for laundry soap and a wire basket for towels) add up to a winning look in the laundry area. To create a larger investment in the look, swap out a typical sink to get a porcelain bib-front version and pay for the walls in beadboard or paneling.

Higgins Architects

13. A chipped-paint cupboard. Add classic patina to your dining area with a chipped-paint cabinet to hold your dishes. Whether the era is real or faked, a piece like this instantly makes everything else in the area feel homier.

14. A wicker trunk. More casual compared to steamer trunks, wicker trunks were often utilized to take picnics out into the countryside in olden days. Use yours to keep exactly the holiday table linens you can’t find room for in your cabinets.

Siemasko + Verbridge

15. A porch. Plump cushions, fluffy throws and baskets of stunning autumn flowering flowers come together to create a porch you can happily spend some time long into the autumn. Take a spoonful of hot apple cider out, place your feet up and relax.

How to cozy up outside this autumn

Tell us Would you try one of these ideas?

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10 Things Artists Want You to Know

Ever wonder how performers decide on a price for their imaginative work? Why it usually costs more to buy in the art gallery than in the artist’s studio? Just curious about daily, what professional musicians do? Here are 10 insights from five artists working in a variety of mediums; included are painters, photographers and a ceramicist.

D. S. Brennan Photography

1. Inspiration comes from observing the world around us. “My work is heavily influenced by my background in environmental science,” says Rhode Island fine art photographer Diana Brennan. “My education and experience interpreting the natural world has informed the way I see natural subjects throughout the camera lens. I would like to share this outlook with my viewers and help them to see the natural world in a new manner, to notice details they’d previously overlooked, and to be reminded that nature is both strong and delicate.”

Brattleboro, Vermont, ceramic artist Natalie Blake says, “Inspiration from the outside comes from nature, history, sciencefiction … in general, I’d call it the hum of life”

Cynthia White Anderson, a fine art pet portrait painter in California, adds, “I find inspiration through daily observation of nature, playing with my two dogs and through my pupils. I’m both a studio artist in addition to an art teacher to a wonderful elementary-school-aged artists. My students challenge me so I’m constantly experimenting. One of my newest inspirations is how sunlight filters through an animal’s ears and fur — that I just love trying to capture the ideal color of warmth in almost any color fur.”

Natalie Blake

2. Inspiration also comes from celebrating fantasies, the self and the world. “I get my inspiration for my own art from fantasy imagery and intuitive inspiration that comes through me onto the sketch clay or paper canvas,” Blake says. “I’m searching the inner spiral of what we call intestine — intuition, faith, patience and hope in the creative procedure.”

Brennan adds, “It’s true that it’s yourself you put into artwork. I’m a quiet, joyful introvert, along with also my work will be composed and introspective. My still-life subjects are generally isolated on a simple backdrop, with emphasis on the details and textures. My landscapes and seascapes have a tendency to be uninhabited, almost verging on desolate, and contain soothing natural greens, blues and neutrals. Generally speaking my style will be both quiet and strong, mirroring the highly effective fragility of nature.”

CAROLE MEYER

3. Inspiration, in fact, can come from anywhere. Nice art writer Carole Meyer, who divides her time between Portland, Oregon, and San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, says, “Inspiration comes from everywhere and anywhere. I find I’m quite inspired by my own home. I really like interior decor, and my art is an extension of the art form.”

And from Blake: “My inspiration to run a small company comes from working together with my friends and coworkers to place beautiful things out in the world which people can touch and live with for centuries, ideally. I love cocreating with a gifted team so as to support each other and the neighborhood”

kittypuppytown.com

4. Communication is key — notably at commissioned work. “Matching a customer’s vision to my capability sometimes proves challenging,” Anderson says. “I have discovered that taking time through the first stages of planning the portrait makes a massive difference. It’s important for the customer to understand that first communication is key to make sure that the last painting matches their desires with as few revisions during the painting stage as possible. I like updating the customer along the way through the full process. I will never get enough of the enthusiasm from a customer when they discuss with me that the painting is beyond their expectations”

Juniper Wind Designs

5. Artists are entrepreneurs, too. Philadelphia fine art photographer Nancy “Weezy” Forman shares, “Being an artist, designer and business specialist, my day is made up of wearing many hats. Putting myself out there on social media, , Facebook and Pinterest takes time, in addition to advertising my artwork to magazines and neighborhood meet-the-artist events in galleries and restaurants where I show my work”

Blake adds, “My favourite part of conducting the company is the juggling act I have to do. I feel like I am juggling eight balls in the air so as to maintain the ball of true creativity one out of eight times. Until the day when my company creates its own momentum, then I might need to keep my hands and eyes many facets of the company, shifting from task to task, decision to conclusion, as needed. This merely frees me from the concentrated time for enjoying and dabbling needed to discover that inner voice”

kittypuppytown.com

6. Art is purposeful into the artist and patron. “One of my absolute preferred things about my work is painting a portrait of a beloved pet that has passed,” Anderson says. “I’d like to feel that through communicating with the customer, I can capture the heart and soul of the animal that they loved a lot”

D. S. Brennan Photography

Specimen 652 – $35

There are two best things about having an art photographer, Brennan says. “The first is watching an image on the computer monitor for the first time and recognizing it came out just as I needed it to. There is something so fascinating about that second of creative satisfaction,” she clarifies. “The moment is the pure pleasure I believe when I see that my work resonates with someone. That connection is what it’s all about.”

D. S. Brennan Photography

7. Artwork prices incorporate many things. “prices is based on a combination of time spent, materials and other costs, and the markup/percentage that a gallery or shop will require,” Brennan says. “I generally spend two hours processing images for every one hour spent shooting. I must also cover time for bookkeeping, advertising, sales, order fulfillment etc.”

Even with no gallery markup and promotion, artwork can cost more to create than you might think. “Material costs include the actual prints, framing or mounting, and any packaging required for display or shipping,” Brennan says. “Other costs include matters like the fee to take behind the scenes at a natural history museum. Overhead expenses have to be covered as well, whether or not a one-time equipment update, the recurring cost of printer the booth charge for an art festival”

Natalie Blake

“I consider what others are selling their work for, imagine a price which feels right and go with it,” Blake says. “I then fix pricing for the logical arrangement of dimensions, labour and creative time. My materials are relatively cheap. It’s the labour, including preparation of materials — clay processing and readying, glaze mixing and testing, fixing equipment, ordering supplies etc. — advertising and marketing, application and proposal preparation, client relations, travel expenditures, studio equipment, equipment purchase and upkeep, that costs the studio so much”

CAROLE MEYER

8. Galleries are an entirely different ballgame from retail stores. “prices is tough,” says Meyer. “If you’re represented by a gallery, as I’m — Gallery 903 at Portland, Oregon — your gallery will allow you to set a price. If you’re selling from your own studio, which I also do, then you have to keep your pricing at precisely the same range because it is in the gallery”

Brennan weighs in: “The last piece of the equation is pricing to market through galleries or brick and mortar stores. Galleries typically take a 40 to 50 percent cut of their sales price to pay their own expenses. Retail stores, having to turn a profit, expect to buy work at 50 percent less than retail cost. Pricing is always a tough balance between covering costs and being competitive on the market.”

CAROLE MEYER

9. Making art is enjoyable. “For me one of the most fascinating areas of making art is experimenting with different techniques and new materials,” Meyer says. “I have no training as an artist, though I had been a professional photographer for 35 years; I simply love to try new things. I’m very cluttered whilst functioning — quite cluttered. A typical day painting for me is to get up, brush teeth, don’t bathe, don’t fix hair, put on very messy paint clothing, don’t do dishes, go to cluttered garage and have a blast all day.”

Juniper Wind Designs

Forman loves photographing old, rusted-out trucks which were abandoned on dirt roads and in areas. “The fun part is traveling along with having the ideal gear and looking for old pickup trucks to photograph,” she says. “We create a lot of U-turns and sometimes need to wait some time for the ideal light. I do other images as well, so along the way I may stumble on something which must be photographed. I also have pleasure giving the images titles, which add to their own character — there’s nothing I dislike about what I do.”

CAROLE MEYER

10. It’s purposeful work but it’s still function. “Creating art is tough work,” Meyer says. “At least for me personally, the toughest part is to receive a painting to the point that I really like it. And if I don’t love it, how can I expect anyone else to appreciate it? I’m never done using a painting before I love it. Regardless of what hard work it is, I want to take action and love to do it. Like ski or mountain climbing or running a marathon, it is all hard work, and if we were not forced or if we didn’t like to do it , it would just be work”

Tell us : What do you want to understand about what artists do?

More: 10 Design Strategies for Art Lovers

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Double-Duty Savvy: 10 Supersmart Laundry Room Combos

In case you’ve got a normal company job these days, chances are that you’re doing the work three folks used to do, which means multitasking is the most important skill. Company owners and full-time parents: You use five different hats in any given moment. Make your home work in the smart ways you can. It will cut back on the size of home you need, your energy consumption, your invoices and your carbon footprint, leaving additional time on the clock and moola in the budget to the fun stuff.

In this series we will look at how to make all of the rooms in the house hum along at 100 percent, starting with all the laundry room. Here are 10 ways to rationalize incorporating a few more square feet into this secret oasis and make it a location where you wish to spend some time.

Crisp Architects

1. Laundry room plus potting shed and flower arranging room. A utility sink in the laundry room means you can wash off helpless hands and even sneakers before they enter the rest of the house. A counter means you’ve got room to clip, pot, transplant, arrange as well as overwinter in here. It is a potting shed–matches –shopper store. It is every cut-flower gardener’s and supper party host’s dream. Also, note all the area for storing gardening materials, vases, Crocs and more.

Normandy Remodeling

This is a contemporary version of the potting shed laundry room.

Dream House Studios

2. Laundry room and craft room and studio. I admit, this laundry room is bigger than a lot of kitchens. But it’s so fabulous, and it has many purposes, so it’s allowed. The room has natural lighting, overhead lights, pendant lights and that huge surface for folding, ironing, crafting or running a company. Why don’t you get your laundry done as you’re working on patterns, collaging, making jewellery, writing a site, working on the kids’ summer program or obtaining Etsy orders ready to send? Multitasking in your multitasking room may make you unstoppable.

Geoff Chick & Associates

3. Laundry room and pantry. Combining a cabinet with the laundry room means you are going to have one walk in space rather than 2 routine closet-size spaces. You will want the space to be near the kitchen, so in case your bedrooms are on a different ground, research installing a chute. Keep cleaning supplies close to the machine and do not mix items like food and bleach at the same cabinets.

Wendy O’Brien Interior Planning & Design

This’50s ranch pantry was a really sad sight. Now it’s a cheerful, stylish and functional place for stashing supermarket and doing laundry.

Corynne Pless

4. Laundry room plus extra-refrigerator room. You may be all set using the pantry but need that extra refrigerator for weekend drinks and all that beef you’ve bought in bulk at Costco. A laundry room with only a few additional square feet can manage it.

See the rest of the eclectic Nashville bungalow

Dwellings

5. Laundry room plus coat-warming closet (and more). This very well-thought-out laundry room has an excess refrigerator and freezer, a craft space, additional pantry cabinets, a coat heating closet (that is in cold Michigan, after all) and a sink.

See more of the laundry room and the rest of the Michigan lake house

Fantastic Kitchens & Baths

6. Laundry room plus back entrance . That is such a great solution for all those with children. They can come in, kick off their muddy shoes, wash their hands, hang up their coats, toss their backpacks in their lockers and toss their muddy soccer uniforms into the washing machine. The dirt stops here.

How to educate kids to load up and flip on this washing machine themselves

Smith & Vansant Architects PC

7. Laundry room also dog-washing channel. The same rules can apply to puppies. The architects created a much-needed dog-washing spot adjacent to the laundry machines in this beautiful home. They even integrated the client’s hand-painted tiles to the doggie tub surround.

See the rest of this antique Cape

Dara Barber

Your utility sink can double as a pet bathtub, depending on how large your dog is.

Side note: Raise your hand if you believe that this dog has been primped for some type of pageant which will air on reality TV. This is only one of the photos on which make me smile the broadest.

Old World Kitchens & Custom Cabinets

8. Laundry room plus gift wrap section. Wrapping paper stored up high with counter area below means you can wrap a gift and get right out the door to that baby shower, kids’ birthday party or holiday gathering within moments. No searching around for paper, tape, ribbon, cards, gift tags or a place to place it all together. The counters do double duty for folding clothes.

Bruen Design Build Inc..

Even if your laundry room is tiny, you can still accomplish the gift wrap channel. All you will need is front loaders, which means you are able to use the space beneath the machines as counter area. A wall-mounted cabinet keeps wrapping paper and ribbons so that you can

The Design Den Homes Inc..

9. Laundry room plus sewing room. You do not need to wait until your kid goes to college to flip his or her room to the location where you’re sew and hang stuff on the otherwise fresh Bowflex. Give yourself a small workspace and a place to plug in (if needed ). Fantastic lighting is crucial; cabinets or drawers for fabrics and other materials are a benefit.

Brickmoon Design

10. Laundry room plus command central. The programs, the wrapping paper, the documents, the household binders, the desk where you look up photographs of Javier Bardem online and Photoshop your own face over Penelope Cruz’s and yes, the place for folding too. It is all here. The best part is that a parent can lock the door and sneak in a private conversation with a friend that doesn’t involve sippy cups or Dora the Explorer every now and then.

Bruning Homes, Inc..

ers, what additional functions are you added to your laundry room? Please share in the Comments section.

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Patio of the Week: A Cozy Backyard Escape Warms Seattle Gardeners

This Seattle couple has more passion for gardening than they do for sports, and so that they substituted a complete tennis court on their property with a vegetable garden, greenhouse and tool shed with a living roof. Located close to Discovery Park in Seattle, the backyard’s greenhouse provides a respite from cold and rain in winter. Gold, orange, yellow, purple and red blossoms, leaves and furnishings offer a riot of bright color that enlivens the whole lawn, even under Seattle’s frequently gray heavens, although raised vegetable beds offer plenty of fresh produce for your table.

Berger Partnership

“It’s a great space to pot up plants in winter once you really wish to work in the garden, but do not wish to have completely drenched,” says landscape architect Jason Henry of Berger Partnership.

The greenhouse, full with citrus and other tender plants that emerge from the flagstone paving, has a big counter and sink. It backs up to a new shed, which has a green roof planted with sedums and a water harvesting system for your greenhouse. “The shed was a big part of the program for the design; there was a strong desire to arrange and visually comprise all of the stuff such as pots, tools and toys for the grandkids,” Henry says.

Berger Partnership

Continuous bluestone flagstone paving and gorgeous custom glass doors make a smooth connection between the greenhouse and the remainder of the garden.

“There has been a lot of cut bluestone used for the paving around the home, so we needed to tie into that, but did not want replicate it,” Henry explains. “Together with the bluestone as flagstone allowed us to be softer on the edges and weave the plantings and paving together.”

Pavilion doors: Architectural Glass/Greg Carman

Berger Partnership

Raised beds arranged in meticulous lines give the garden a pleasing and coordinated modern arrangement. The beds are irrigated by drip tubing.

While the beds are aesthetically pleasing, work has been the best priority. “Raised vegetable beds were the principal focus, and we all spent a lot of time contemplating the advantages and disadvantages of the prospective substances in the early stages of the job,” Henry says. “We settled on concrete because of its durability over hardwood and its ability to serve as a heat sink” In addition, he added chairs to the two long sides to make it even more comfortable to work at the beds.

The fiery orange blossoms on the left are dahlias, developed for cut flowers.

Berger Partnership

An orange trellis covers the main crushed basalt path; the other end (supporting us) provides a view out to Puget Sound. “The trellis is exactly the identical color as the Pyracantha that are espaliered on the primary house,” Henry says. “There are several vines clambering over the trellis, but my favorite is a dark foliaged grape.”

Berger Partnership

This quote from Mary Oliver’s poem The Leaf and the Cloud retains a particular spot in the homeowners’ hubs: “Eternity isn’t afterwards, or at any unfindable place. Roses, roses, roses, roses”

Berger Partnership

Golden Adirondack chairs perform the backyard’s color palette. They also supply a comfortable place to gather after a long day of gardening, enjoying the warmth from the fire pit and also seeing the grandkids play bocce.

Pictures: Read thousands of beautiful patio designs

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Show Us Your Man Cave

Men have been kicked out, stuffed into corners, pushed into spare rooms, crammed into garages and restricted to wooden sheds. But do we care? Heck, no! We would not have our guy caves any way.

Many of you uploaded your own man spaces (or your husband’s or boyfriend’s) to the Opinions section within our latest ideabook, however we just can’t get enough. We’d love to find out more.

Please post your guy cave photograph in the Remarks section below. We are going to feature some of the best in an upcoming story. (And yes, we’ll be doing exactly the same thing for women’s private getaway spaces, also. Stay tuned.)

I adore this rich wood guy cave in Charlotte, North Carolina, built by Walker Woodworking. There are a lot of books and leather chairs and a fully stocked bar.

This is my type of guy space. The noise you can create.

Craig Helmreich posted this picture of his household cave, where”we could combine together in the things I love… (and yes, the drum set is kid sized),” he writes.

Masterpiece Design Group turned this garage apartment into a guy cave in the design of an Irish pub. The space has really become”a very family-friendly hangout,” the firm says.

Many men love sports. Some men actually adore sports. That is why many man caves are likely to feature sports memorabilia.

user campbellbraves’s husband is”over the top with baseball collecting,” she says. “I’ve spent many years taking deep breaths as I see him add to it. I went right downstairs and took a couple of pictures to share. I look forward to incorporating a few of the ideas within our retirement home when we have to attempt to move all this. Yes, there’s a TV and a complete bathroom.”

You can tell that things become manufactured in gavinleigh’s garage.

Your turn: Show us your private man cave in the Remarks below! Please inform us how you use the space and what amenities you added to customize it.

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Roots of Style: Where Does Your House Get Its Appearance?

One of the most common questions people have about their own home is, What style is it? This isn’t always an easy question to answer. “Style” is an elusive term, since it can be applied to many distinct things, and fashion is often an amalgamation of unique capabilities. But most houses have a link to an established fashion of architecture, characterized by the total form of the structure and/or its own details. Also, it ought to be taken into account that lots of structures are made purely out of necessity with little regard to design aesthetic, and are deemed to have a folk or vernacular style.

It may be stated that a fashion is a definition after the fact rather than during or before. To tag a unique construction as it is being designed makes little sense. Time will tell if it holds up to replication and garners a subsequent, thereby establishing a fad. However, by far most houses have a suspended identity which has evolved to adapt to present living standards.

Isler Homes

Designs and styles of home layout once were regional and changed gradually over time. Construction techniques were ordered by the ability of local tradesmen, and materials came from local sources or were given far beforehand and anticipated. Beginning with the construction boom after World War II, modern construction practices fully changed how and what we built.

The Disneyland effect took hold. Layout was motivated by faraway places, and materials could be sent by truck or truck and even flown to virtually any location in the developed world. From the luxury of choice developed a few persistent fashions, which can be pressing in the most recent century with fantastic affection. Here you can view five home styles which have roots in the past yet are ardently 21st-century dwellings having a strong sense of place and character.

1. French diverse. Considered to be suspended in Renaissance classical design rather than ancient classical design, French eclectic style can be symmetrical, as with the home shown here, or asymmetrical. This particular house also has the impression of a chateau with its usage of stone, as well as Beaux-Arts architecture with the thorough articulation of the facade. There is even a hint of Greek revival with its centered, gabled pediment. Though classical design is practically absent in contemporary business construction, it shows no signs of giving up in the national arena.

Sicora Design/Build

2. Shingle. With some reference to classical detailing, the shingle style started to look under the Victorian tradition of design in the late 19th century. It ironically stems from medieval structure — which is, the span of construction between the end of ancient classical and the beginning of Renaissance classical. First shingle was a style before its time; shingle designs emphasized a more open floor plan, a characteristic so common today. With this home there are also components of pole style (notice the gable over the entrance porch) and Tudor (notice the steep roof formations and varying window shapes). Shingle style is now very common in the southeastern United States but may also be found in all areas of the nation.

Studio 1 Architects

3. Prairie. Though accurate examples of the style are rare outside the Midwest, and though it had been only temporarily popular (1900 to 1920), it had a profound effect on vernacular suburban structure for the rest of the 20th century. The long, low, horizontal lines and heavy eaves together with hipped roofs can be found all over the United States in the more comfortable ranch style. It’s also uniquely an American creation and is considered a part of contemporary design and, more especially, stems in the Arts and Crafts movement. As may be seen in this example, the detailing can be quite complicated and complex.

Rockefeller Partners Architects

4. California modern. This coastal California design alludes to midcentury style together with vernacular modernism, hence its designation as modern; it also exhibits now popular materials and construction techniques. A powerful affection for midcentury modern structure, especially nationally, resurfaced in the turn of the 21st century.

Initial examples date back to the 1930s, but the Case Study program in Southern California and developer Joseph Eichler in Northern California place the country on a path of exactly what most labeled, in the time, modern. Many houses were constructed with this sway until a change of taste in the 1980s led fashion back to historic revivals as well as postmodernism, although the latter was uncommon in residential architecture. A strong connection between indoor and outdoor spaces is evident in this example, together with walls of glass and the use of hot materials.

AR Design Studio Ltd

5. International. This fashion is somewhat rare in the United States but may also be found in many places around the planet, like this example in the United Kingdom. Produced in the work of architects like Mies van der Rohe and Le Corbusier before World War II, this style fell out of favor after the war in Europe but concurrently closely influenced the aforementioned midcentury modernism in the United States.

Structural transparency is located in the heart of the style, which may readily be identified by horizontal roofs, walls of glass and long airplanes of strong walls punctuated with openings. Together with the home displayed, the landscape is characterized by the expansion of primary wall components, while the upper level seems to float above the setting. Minimalism marks its identity, but closer inspection of those masterpieces often reveals complicated, thoughtful and careful detailing.

Next: Meet Your Conventional House’s Classical Ancestors

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Travel Guide: Vancouver for Design Lovers

This scenic coastal Town, one of the Very densely populated in North America, is nestled between the North Shore Mountains and the Pacific Ocean in British Columbia, Canada. At its heart Vancouver is home to around 600,000 people — two million if you include the surrounding areas.

Consistently voted one of the most livable cities in the world, Vancouver is a melting pot of cultures and thoughts. It exudes diversity, has a strong creative community and is punctuated by new and old layout, such as historical heritage houses, illustrations of West Coast modernism and buildings which show a movement toward a more sustainable urban environment.

Vancouver’s nickname, the “City of Glass,” is taken from the title of Douglas Coupland’s travel publication; it cites the steel and glass structure which dominates the skyline.

“Vancouverism,” a term originally credited to famous local architect Arthur Erickson, captures a metropolitan architectural movement rooted in a profound respect for nature that has been embraced throughout town planning process. The glassy low-rise buildings are meant to encourage thoughtful development.

GSky Plant Systems

If you’re traveling by airplane, you are going to have the pleasure of touring the Vancouver International Airport (YVR), Canada’s first airport to install a green living wall. This striking display is 18 meters high and 12 meters wide (59 by 39 feet); it was designed by Sharp Diamond Landscape Architecture and homes 28,249 human plants. The airport also shows a spectacular collection of Pacific Northwest native art and totems.

Must-Sees

Vancouver Convention Centre
Price: Free to tour indoors; occasion entrance varies
Location: 1055 Canada Pl.
Noteworthy: Accredited LEED Platinum, thisbuilding boastsCanada’s largest living roof: 6 acres, such as 400,000 indigenous plants along with four colonies of bees.

Have a waterfront stroll round the building and take from the oceanfront views of Stanley Park and the North Shore. In the convention centre, a world that’s 18 feet in diameter is suspended from a background of wood-paneled walls made from 6,000 planks of neighborhood British Columbia sustainable hemlock.

The Interior Design Show, aka IDSWest, calls the centre home; at 2013 the series is September 19 to 22. The venue has also been chosen as the host for its 30th anniversary of this TED2014 conference.

More info: Vancouver Convention Centre, IDSWest, TED2014

Megan Buchanan

Vancouver Art Gallery
Price: About $17 for adults; entrance by donation on Tuesdays after 5 p.m.
Location: 750 Hornby St.
Noteworthy: The front steps are a popular public gathering place. They spill onto Robson Street, a busy shopping area.

This building was originally constructed as the main courthouse for Vancouver. It was declared a heritage site and retains the original walls and judges’ benches. The gallery is home to a group by Canadian painter Emily Carr, famous for her depiction of British Columbia’s forests and totems.

The present exhibition, Grand Hotel: Redesigning Modern Life, charts the evolution of hotels architecturally, geographically and socially. It runs until September 15, 2013.

More info: Vancouver Art Gallery

Megan Buchanan

Vancouver Public Library
Location: 350 W. Georgia St. (Library Square)
Noteworthy: Walk through the steel and glass atrium to get a Feeling of the construction’s centrifugal design.

A layout contest decided the last appearance of this building. The people voted for architect Moshe Safdie’s design, which surprised officials, because the surrounding buildings are more traditional.

More info: Vancouver Public Library

Must-Dos

Stanley Park and the seawall
Location: The south end of Lions Gate Bridge and downtown
Noteworthy: Stop at the English Bay, Second Beach or Third Beach or check out the gigantic Stanley Park hollow tree, a western red cedar that’s 700 to 800 years old.

Stanley Park is Vancouver’s largest urban park in 400 hectares (988 acres), and it is home to many historic landmarks as well as the Vancouver aquarium. The paved seawall surrounding the park is 22 km (13.6 miles) and is popular for walking, jogging or riding a bike.

More info: Stanley Park, seawall

Historic Gastown
Location: 43 Powell St.
Noteworthy: Check out Vancouver’s legendary flatiron-style building: the Hotel Europe, built in 1909.

Gastown is the town’s oldest neighborhood and a national historical site. It was recently voted the fourth-most-stylish neighborhood by Complex magazine and is home to many style and interior furnishings boutiques as well as bars and restaurants.

Having a statue of heritage father and saloon owner Gassy Jack (1860s) in its epicenter, Gastown is a special pocket at town where you can shop, eat, drink and stroll along cobblestone streets. There are many furniture showrooms, such as InForm Interiors and Montauk Sofa. Additional must-stops such as home furnishings include Parliament, Old Faithful and Orling & Wu.

If you’re seeking a coffee or a cocktail, then try Nelson that the Seagull or The Diamond overlooking Maple Tree Square, respectively.

More info: Gastown, Inform Interiors, Montauk Sofa, Parliament, Old Faithful, Orling & Wu, Nelson the Seagull, The Diamond

Megan Buchanan

Museum of Anthropology
Price: Around $16 for adults
Location: 6393 Marine Dr.
Noteworthy: The Great Hall (shown) features 15-meter (49-foot) walls of glass.

Beloved Canadian architect Arthur Erickson designed the museum; he’s said to have been inspired by the post and beam structure of Northwest Coast First Nations people. Like the majority of his work, it’s made primarily of concrete.

More info: Museum of Anthropology

Museum of West Vancouver Modern Home Tour
When: Saturday, July 13, 2013
Price: $100; registration required
Location: Check in at the museum: 680 17th St., West Vancouver

Select for a self-guided tour or join the bus tour to visit some classic cases of West Coast modernism. Shown here is a home featured on the 2012 tour. If you are unable to make it to the tour this summer, take a look at photographer Selwyn Pullan’s publication Photographing Mid-Century West Coast Modernism or take a look at the movie Coast Modern.

More info: Museum of West Vancouver, West Coast Modern Home Tour

Tacofino Commissary

Must-Eats

Tacofino Commissary
Price: Appetizers about $4 to 12; tacos from $5
Location: 2327 E. Hastings St. (Hastings-Sunrise)
Noteworthy: The light installation is made from copper cable and blown glass.

Grown from humble food truck starts, Tacofino currently has a restaurant place with an interior layout by Omer Arbel, a Vancouver designer and creative director at light company Bocci. The restaurant also features potted cacti and succulents created by Olla Urban Flower Project.

More info: Tacofino Commissary

Salt Tasting Room

Salt Tasting Room
Price: Around $16 for tasting plates
Location: 45 Blood Alley (Gastown)
Noteworthy: Create a tasting plate from daily chalkboard menus and pair it with wine, beer or sherry.

Salt is located behind Gaoler’s Mews, Vancouver’s first jail, on Blood Alley, which gained its name from becoming a home mostly to butcher’s shops in the past. Gaoler’s Mews along with the neighboring buildings are believed to include one of the most haunted areas of the city. The restaurant charms with exposed brick walls and polished concrete floors.

More info: Salt Tasting Room

Janis Nicolay

Heirloom
Price: Entrees about $15 to $17
Location: 1509 W. 12th Ave. (South Granville)
Noteworthy: Glue the “heirloom” popcorn or an aloe cocktail while perusing the menu and taking from the pleasure vintage produce advertisements adorning the walls.

Heirloom functions modern vegetarian cuisine in a space on an old apartment block. The eclectic, homey restaurant has been designed by Evoke International Design and features a mix of vintage bits, commissioned cabinetry and original artwork.

More info: Heirloom

Rodney’s Oyster House
Price: Seasonal pricing
Location: 1228 Hamilton St. (Yaletown)
Noteworthy: See during whenever the low-tide specials are available (Monday through Saturday, 3 to 6 pm) and ask your server for daily specials.

Being coastal, Vancouver offers many seafood options. If you’re an oyster aficionado, check out Rodney’s, located in a former industrial area with historical brick warehouses-turned-lofts. Yaletown is one of the most densely populated neighborhoods in town and is home to many nightlife and dining options.

More info: Rodney’s Oyster House

Megan Buchanan

The Keefer Bar
Price: Beverages about $10 to $14; food about $7 to $16
Location: 133 Keefer St. (Chinatown)

Housed on the narrow and long ground floor of a turn-of-the-century warehouse, the more Keefer takes a exceptional way of cocktails. Its apothecary-style “remedies” or “cures” are hand made from Asian-inspired ingredients.

Three stylish loft suites with a fourth-level penthouse are all over the bar, and they comprise a huge private patio complete with a glass-bottom pool visible from inside the suites. Sad to say, the Keefer building is currently privately owned and no more available for rentals.

More info: The Keefer Bar

Örling & Wu

Must-Visit Shops

Orling & Wu
Location: 28 Water St. (Gastown)

This boutique home furnishings retailer often features first-in-Canada products chosen by creators Fredrik Örling and Julie Wu. The shop is a mix of modern, vintage and traditional styles. The team also specializes in wallpaper and upholstery services.

More info: Orling & Wu

The Cross Decor & Design
Location: 98 Homer St. (Yaletown)
Noteworthy: The owners also offer interior design services.

Located in a 1914 tradition building, The Cross boasts 5,000 square feet of retail space supplying textiles, furnishings, candles, books, jewelry and much more. Owners Darci Ilich and Stephanie Vogler wanted to deliver a relaxed yet elegant European style to Vancouver.

More info: The Cross Decor & Design

ReFind
Location: 1849 Main St. (Mount Pleasant)
Noteworthy: If you’re feeling thrifty or looking for that one-of-a-kind piece, check out ReFind. The owners supply everywhere, bringing in preloved furniture, lighting and antiques. They are also up for hunting for that special something you have been on the lookout for.

Main Street is home to many antiques and vintage clothing shops. There are some great dining options and galleries. If you’re looking for a bit from the upcoming great Canadian artist, check out On Main Gallery, an artist-run space that shows work by both new and established Canadian artists.

More info: ReFind, On Main Gallery

Mint Interiors
Location: 1805 Fir St. (Armoury District)

Mint is at the Armoury District (recently named after the nearby Seaforth Armoury), that is now home to many of Vancouver’s architects, designers and suppliers. This home furnishings store carries global finds and also offers its private-label custom furniture.

More info: Mint Interiors

Rosewood Hotels

Must-Stays

Rosewood Hotel Georgia

Price: From about $217
Location: 801 W. Georgia St. (Downtown)
Noteworthy: The hotel has hosted famous guests, such as Elvis Presley, Nat King Cole, Katharine Hepburn and British royalty.

Once the hotel opened in 1927, it was called the town’s most elegant retreat. It relaunched in 2011 as Rosewood Hotel Georgia and is located right across from the Vancouver Art Gallery. Head up to the rooftop Reflections Lounge for a drink next to outdoor fire pits, cabanas along with a waterfall feature.

More info: Rosewood Hotel Georgia

The Burrard
Price: From about $98
Location: 1100 Burrard St. (Downtown)
Noteworthy: Free cruiser bike rentals to explore the city with

A decorative redo, the hotel once called Burrard Motor Inn originally opened in 1956; at 2011 the renovations paying homage to the past were completed. The courtyard is a superb oasis if you’re seeking comfort in the center of the city.

More info: The Burrard

The Fairmont

The Fairmont Pacific Rim
Price: From about $227
Location: 1038 Canada Pl. (Coal Harbour)
Noteworthy: The Lobby Lounge features live music seven days per week and can be a happening spot for happy hour.

Across from the new Convention Centre, the Fairmont boasts amazing views, particularly of the North Shore. It’s luxuriously appointed with natural stone and wood finishes.

More info: The Fairmont Pacific Rim

vancouver.opushotel.com

Opus Hotel
Location: 322 Davie St. (Yaletown)
Price: From about $153
Noteworthy: The rooms comprise iPads, Frette bathrobes and Herman Miller ergonomic chairs.

Opus is a stylish boutique hotel amid Yaletown’s historical warehouses. Its sleek and lively jewel-toned rooms were designed by Robert Bailey and feature local artists’ contemporary artwork. The hotel is within walking distance of all Yaletown’s restaurants and shops.

More info: Opus Hotel

Local Tips

Have a drive over Lions Gate Bridge. This suspension bridge spans Burrard Inlet and joins Vancouver in Stanley Park to North and West Vancouver (the North Shore). Named after “The Lions,” two notable side-by-side peaks of the North Shore Mountains which are visible once you’re crossing the bridge northbound, it was completed in 1938 and is a notable feature, particularly when lit up at night, of Vancouver’s skyline.

If you plan to devote a few days in town and wish to venture outside downtown, perhaps over to the North Shore or up to Whistler, a rental car might be your best bet. If you are staying near downtown and would like to abide by public transportation, you can easily get around through bus or skytrain. To get a cruise round Stanley Park try the many bike, inline skating or scooter rental stores in the foot of Denman Street (in Georgia Street).

Section of Vancouver’s transit system, TransLink, the SeaBus is an alternate way to cross between the city and the North Shore. Hop on from either side and take in the opinions.

More info: Translink

Grouse Mountain

If you’re into the outdoors, hike the “Grouse Grind” trail on Grouse Mountain, dubbed “The Peak of Vancouver” for bird’s-eye views of town, Burrard Inlet and the Georgia Strait out to Vancouver Island. You can also take the gondola.

For great north-facing city views, head up to Queen Elizabeth Park and the Bloedel Floral Conservatoryor the adjacent Quarry Gardens.

More info: Grouse Mountain,Queen Elizabeth Park; Bloedel Floral Conservatory

Tell us : Hey, Vancouverites, did we miss anything? Share your choices for design-minded items to do and see and places in which visitors might prefer to eat, drink and shop.

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Must-Know Modern Homes: Eames House

Charles and Ray Eames are just two of their most influential designers of the 20th century, having made a number of iconic pieces of furniture that many contemporary houses cannot function without. The husband and wife team did not limit themselves to furniture, though. They produced movies (the most famous is Powers of Ten), made toys and games (House of Cards), and even designed multimedia environments (IBM Pavilion at the 1964–’65 world’s fair). Of interest here is your house and studio that have been an extension and impetus for much of their successful output.

If very little is discussed about the structure of the Eameses aside from their very own home, it is because they made very little architecture besides their very own residence. Frustrated with the work of design and the cancellation of a couple projects, they abandoned structure in favor of furniture soon after their home was completed. Nevertheless their home and studio are as influential in architecture since their seats are in the world of furniture design. The structures simultaneously embody the universal and the personal, pointing the way to how the steel and glass of contemporary architecture could be vibrant, creative and, most important, dwelt in.

Eames House in a Glance
Year constructed: 1949
Architects:
Charles and Ray Eames
Location: Pacific Palisades neighborhood of Los Angeles
Seeing info: Reserved self-guided exterior tours only
Size: 1,500 square feet (home) and 1,000 square feet (studio)

More: 10 Must-Know Modern Homes

The complete title of the job is Eames House, Case Study House No. 8. Charles began designing the home in 1945 with Eero Saarinen, when they were commissioned by John Entenza, the editor of Arts & Architecture magazine. The Case Study House program conducted until 1966 and saw the realization of 23 modern houses that embraced industrialization.

Eames and Saarinen’s first design positioned the home and studio volumes in an L-shaped plan atop a mountain on a 3-acre site in Pacific Palisades, Los Angeles, overlooking the Pacific. The home was dramatically cantilevered from the mountain, away in the neighboring Case Study House No. 9 (planned in precisely the same period and made by Eames and Saarinen), but by 1947 the Eameses (no longer functioning together with Saarinen) simplified the plan and tucked the house to the hillside along a long retaining wall.

The home is hidden among the trees within this aerial. Many of them were implanted in a new mound constructed from the home’s excavation, helping to block the views between No. 8 and No. 9.

Basically what Charles and Ray did using the next plan was to simplify it while still using the same standard steel construction that was arranged prior to the redesign. This opinion of the west facade indicates the 12-inch-deep joists that support the roof and therefore are exposed inside. The home is organized around 71/2-foot-wide bays that are 17 feet high and 20 feet deep; one bay is out around the west, but the rest are enclosed.

Both house and studio are aligned along a retaining wall around the north (left in this photograph), together with the studio on the east, the home on the west and a courtyard in between. The far east and west ends characteristic double-height spaces. Here we’re looking into the living room’s two-story space on the west.

This view from atop the retaining wall looking west reveals the east side of the home facing the courtyard and studio. Notice how it is more powerful than the west facade. This is because the Eameses placed the service areas across the retaining wall around the north but also across the courtyard, in effect freeing up the ends for the double-height spaces. (A floor plan is seen at the conclusion of this ideabook.)

The courtyard divides the home and studio (the studio served as a home office until 1958, when the office was transferred to Venice, California), but in addition, it provides some relief to what would have been a bunch of service spaces if this were just one long building. The courtyard was designed to be covered but was built as an open space, enclosed on three sides.

Eames saw the home as a progressive means of extending wartime industrial production to the problem of the housing shortage. In this way the job was regarded as a prototype for future houses scattered throughout the country, but it’s clear upon coming to the home that it is highly idiosyncratic. Reyner Banham humorously described Charles as having a “hot-rodder mindset into the elements of building,” customizing standard components in unexpected manners.

First glances can result in comparisons with Piet Mondrian’s paintings, however James Steele, in a book-length analysis of the home, talks about your home as a personal expression of a specific style. In their short film on the home from 1955, the Eameses present the building via snapshots of flowers, toys, trees, architectural details — just about everything but the wide-angle views of architecture we’re used to today. The focus on details and moments in the movie finds a parallel in the moments of colour experienced about the facade and within the home.

This last opinion of the Eames House reveals how the duo actually dwelt in the home and used it as a casing that comprised and worked with their possessions and furniture. The home was not a container to be kept minimally furnished. It was a total environment, where the smallest artifact was as critical as the largest parts of architecture. It arouses the Eames style at all scales.

The exterior of the Eames House could be visited with reservations. Interior tours are available for members of the Eames Foundation.

References
Banham, Reyner. Age of the Masters: A Personal View of Modern Architecture. Harper & Row. Banham, Reyner. Los Angeles: The Architecture of Four Ecologies. The Penguin Press, 1971. The Eames FoundationFrampton, Kenneth and Larkin, David. American Masterworks: The Twentieth Century House. Rizzoli, 1995. House After Five Years of Living. A short film by Charles and Ray Eames, 1955.
Steele, James. Eames House: Charles and Ray Eames. Phaidon, 1994. More:
Eames on Film: The Architect and the Painter
10 Must-Know Modern Homes

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Brick Floors: Could This Durable Material Work for Your Residence?

There is something very cozy about brick floors — they imbue a home with a storied, old-world feel and emit a feeling of relaxation and nostalgia. Bricks unite the durability of tile or stone with the warm colors of wood, and they are able to work with almost any home design. Yet for all those positive features, they stay a relative desktop player on the grand stage of floor coverings.

If you’re thinking about brick floors for your home, keep these concerns in mind.

Barnes Vanze Architects, Inc

Experts of Brick Flooring

• Style flexibility. As with tile, brick’s modular character lends itself into an infinite number of patterns. Running bond (staggered), basket weave, herringbone and others are classics, but you can make a customized motif or a mosaic-style therapy. Brick also lends itself well to paint or epoxy, if you would prefer a radically different color than the typical earth tones.

• Sturdiness. Recall the Three Little Pigs? There are good reasons brick has been a building stalwart for centuries: It’s tough to ruin, it doesn’t rot. Also it will not require sanding or painting. Brick withstands extreme circumstances and weathers heavy foot traffic effortlessly, and it’s also heatproof. Individual bricks can crack or chip as time passes, but they are relatively easy to pry out and substitute.

Dennison and Dampier Interior Design

• Affordability. Since brick used for inside design is usually in paver or tile type, it’s thinner and less costly than exterior brick. On average you will pay less than $10 per square foot, uninstalled. Unless you’re a very skilled DIYer, you will want to factor in professional installation prices (typically around $500 to $700 to an average-size room), as brick can be difficult to put properly.

• Sustainability.
Clay brick is made chiefly of natural substances, such as shale, kaolin and minerals. Additionally, bricks from older or demolished structures could be salvaged for new programs — especially nice if you’re aiming for a vintage effect.

• Slip resistance. Left pristine, brick has a slightly rough, textured coating that offers traction underfoot. However, if you seal it with a slick or waxy coating, then you are going to have to take different measures to prevent falls.

• Cosmetic appeal.
One reason people love brick is its own inherent conventional warmth, which few different substances can replicate. It evokes a feeling of the past and feels like a powerful, reassuring holdover from bygone days. Natural variations in its own coloring provide it a beautifully nuanced palette.

Cons of Brick Flooring

• Hardness. Durability includes a cost: Brick is unyielding under the feet. If you’re using it in a kitchen or a different space where you spend long periods of time standing, then look at incorporating a cushioned mat or a thick rug to ease the strain on your thighs and back.

• Unevenness.
The best-laid brick floors are not 100 percent level, so you may want to compensate for slipping shims under pads or furniture under precarious breakables.

• Weight. As you would imagine, bricks are heavy, even in paver form. As a result, they are often impractical to get a home’s second or third story; it’s very hard to reinforce the floor enough to support all this weight.

Wright Design

• Moisture damage. While bricks onto a vertical surface resist water well, bricks onto a horizontal surface are another story. Moisture can accumulate and penetrate the mortar, and whether the bricks are porous, it can seep beneath their face too. You’ll want to apply a sealant occasionally to guard against mould, mold and cracking.

Tell us : Have you utilized brick floors in your property? What tips would you share?

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Great Lakes Gardener's February Checklist

Fantastic Lakes gardeners may be feeling like winter won’t ever end. What’s a gardener to do, other than head south? Fortunately, the days are becoming longer, winter is on the wane and there are a couple of flowers in the garden to cheer the spirit. February provides a last opportunity to get things done from the garden before the coming of spring, and an opportunity to get a jump on next season’s garden. It’s only 28 days; it’ll be over fast.

More regional garden guides

Barbara Pintozzi

Look for early-flowering bulbs. Flowers outdoors in the winter from the Great Lakes garden aren’t necessarily the product of a cabin-fevered mind. The oldest of the small bulbs, for example Winter aconites (Eranthis spp) and snow crocus (Crocus chrysanthus) sprout and blossom when not buried in snow.

Barbara Pintozzi

Snowdrops (here, Galanthus elwesii) peek their heads over the snow.

Planting these oldest of bulbs in a hot microclimate will ensure reliable February blossoms each year.

Barbara Pintozzi

A number of the witch hazels (here, Hamamelis x intermedia ‘Sunburst’) begin unfurling their own strap-like petals on warmer days in February. Some varieties are fragrant. Espaliered against a wall, witch hazel can blossom even sooner.

Barbara Pintozzi

Enjoy indoor blossoms. Even when the garden does not cooperate, there are indoor blossoms to dispel the February blahs. All those forced bulbs brightens up last fall ought to be in full bloom today, such as this blended pot of ‘Synaeda Amor’ tulips (Tulipa) and ‘Flower Record’ crocus (Crocus vernus).

Barbara Pintozzi

Plan for spring. You will find things gardeners can perform inside this month to plan ahead for the gardening season.

Purchase The Garden Conservancy’s Open Days Program directory to organize visits to outstanding local gardens. Park Place at Barrington Hills, Illinois, shown here, was open to the public for only one day each in 2011 and 2012, and it would have been a shame to miss it.

Purchase seeds today so they arrive in time to get them started six to eight weeks before the last frost date. Procure seed-starting gear as well so that will be ready in March.

Unusual, hard-to-find perennials may be arranged online today, with a requested ship date for April, to ensure your choices aren’t sold out.

Barbara Pintozzi

Prune woody plants. Gardeners itching to do something out from the garden can sharpen up the pruners. February is the perfect time to form up dormant woody plants.

Without foliage, the crossing branches of the crabapple tree (Malus x ‘Prairiefire’) are plainly visible, making pruning much easier.

Winter pruning is not advocate for trees which “bleed” from the winter, for example as maples (Acer spp) or to get plants that bloom on old wood, for example magnolia, forsythia and lilac (Syringa vulgaris).

Barbara Pintozzi

Shape clematis. Type III, late-flowering or Clematis viticella hybrids, such as this Clematis viticella ‘Betty Corning’, which bloom on new growth, may be cut back today. Cut the stems back to 1 foot from the ground. Instead, where the blossom is outgrowing its space, it may be cut all the way to the ground. It is prudent to wait to cut back dead foliage until fresh leaf buds look on Type II, ancient, large-flowering clematis (usually in March).

Barbara Pintozzi

Force flowering branches inside. While you’ve got the pruners in hand, snip several branches of forsythia or other early-spring-blooming shrubs, such as flowering quince (Chaenomeles sp) and pussy willow (Salix sp) to force into bloom indoors to get a spring trailer. Branches could be forced when the flower buds have begun to swell.

Put the freshly cut branches in warm water, then in room-temperature water the next day, and change the water daily.

Forsythia generally will blossom within two weeks of cutting, but as with almost any forced woody plant, the closer it is cut to blossom time, the earlier it will open.

Hang in there, spring is nearly here.

More regional garden guides

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