I love stonework and think it should be a part of any home design where gardening is concerned. There is a new home design welling up in my non stop creative mind. A Gardener’s Home where a 4 season screened porch opens to the spacious kitchen. The gardens are in the front of the house incorporating vegetables and flowers.
Paths of stone mingle in and out drawing the stresses right out of your day. There is a mud/work room with deep sink, open and closed storage, lots of windows, and of course a bench. Over 40 years of gardening will lovingly find it’s way in this project.
The screened porch opens to the kitchen and those passing can view through to see warmth and life inside. The colors are robin’s egg blue and paprika. It is an updated 50’s color with tones of aqua, terra cotta, whites, and pinks.
A home where the evening conversation takes place on the front side of the house and most likely in the fireplace coziness of the porch.
Walk right out to the gardens and cut a fresh bouquet or pick some tomatoes. Share with the neighbors who have come to visit as a garden draws attention, feelings of happiness, hope, America, and the spirit of family.
Share your ideas with me about a garden design element you could not live without.
Would it be a pebble path coming from the mud room? One to capture debris and potting soil from the bottom of your wellies? That was suggested by my friend Philip Bewley of Studioworkshops by Therien. He is working on a garden home too and has shared with me some marvelous ideas:
Philip says….My own idea is that there would be a pretty big room off the kitchen that would be a mud room with a bench to take off muddy garden stuff, with a planting bench, tools, also laundry with long counters and a deep sink. The bathroom would be large, and double as poolhouse, with an entrance to shower also from the outside. In the kitchen I have something now which is great, but I would make bigger: near the kitchen, but not in path of activity is a long counter for coffee and tea, so that is its own station, with herbs also stored there, and fruit, dessert on cake stands, and even big enough as a place to put the grocery bags, doubles as a buffet table for parties. I would like my office to not be completely enclosed, but half hidden as an alcove off the living area where I can have all the walls as bookshelves. What I am working on is trying to make the house not so big so people are not isolated (and less expensive and easy to maintain) but that traffic areas are wide so people can move about without bumping into each other.
One of the interesting things I was reading about in a great book, “Pattern Language”, was about windows. Rooms with a window on one side have glare. Rooms with windows on two sides have light bouncing off each other and glare is reduced. This can be adjusted in a room where there is only one outside wall by having multiple windows, or at least two side by side on that wall. Light bounces of the frames and reduces harsh glare in that arrangement.
My aunt had one ( mud room) where there was a hatrack for all her garden hats and this also had the leads for the dogs. She has a shelf for all her boots, some those tall wellies because of ticks in the tall grass. The deep sink she used constantly for watering houseplants and this was where the dogs got their bath after coming home muddy. I can’t say the dogs were completely enthused about it all, but they endured it.
My brother redesigned a house in CT and the kitchen had no overhead cabinets. Instead there was a pantry (which was truly a favorite room with the cry”this could go into the pantry” like if you said “The Giants are going to the World Series!) off the kitchen and dining area. This was perfect for storing plates, but also things you do not need all the time like the waffle iron, big roasting pan. The cupboards were painted a sage green so it looked very colonial, like what you have shown in Old Salem. A Dutch door led to the side yard, which had only French pea gravel and boxwood. This seemed very tidy and ship-shape and was a nice contrast to the other gardens around the house which were exuberant with lots of perennials and old fashioned plants.
I think Philip has some excellent ideas and I’d like to hear yours too. If you want to be a sponsor of my home, please use the contact button at the top of my blog.