Thinking Gardens…Inside and Out #15


Monk's house weekend, 1931- the Woolf's at home,
Vanessa Bell visiting
 illustrated by Amanda White
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Today was 'garden' day…in the midst a brilliant white landscape we had to put on our garden hats and think green…and retaining walls. 

We had a meeting of artistic minds, architecture, gardens and stone. The topic was retaining walls...the medium, size, location and the impact they would have in the 'big picture' of Tahilla Farm. 

From there we moved onto garden 'rooms' around the property...east, west, north and south. They were referenced as the 'New Hampshire' garden, 'Japanese Zen' garden, and 'Bloomsbury' garden. 

A delicate and simple balance from one to the other, each sitting into the landscape in a gentle manner. 

I had to laugh though…when our landscape designer, Gordon Hayward, turned to me and said "Jeanne, of all the clients I have had you are the one who provided me with the most direction". My first thought, was "oh no, I am one of 'those' clients"

He then added "and it all came from your blog". He proceeded to unroll his drawings and with each one was a photograph or two from posts I had written over the years about landscapes and gardening. They went as far back to our days living in England when the Chelsea Flower Show, Hampton Court Palace Flower Show and rambles around National Trust properties were a regular occurrence. There have been many times when I have been thankful for what this blog has brought into my life and this was one of them. 

Gordon noticed a theme, something I had forgotten, and it centered around the Bloomsbury group and their homes and gardens. He pulled out the book, Charleston, having marked the pages that inspired his drawings. In particular, it was the connection of the interior space to the garden, a continuous space to nurture and encourage the thoughts that stir within. 

It was an incredibly productive meeting…we all felt it. I can't wait for the next…when the snow is melted and spring is in the air.

On that note, I will leave you with a few paintings from my 'Bloomsbury' board on Pinterest. With special thoughts to those of you dreaming of spring in the midst of mountain high snow banks. 

Think of Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz..tap your winter boots and say…"There is no place like spring in the garden, there is no place like spring in the garden". It will come, promise! :)


'Window, South of France'
painted by Duncan Grant, 1928
at La Bergere, a farm cottage attached 
to chateau Fontcreuse, north of Cassis

'The Room with a View' 
by Duncan Grant 1919
Painting of Vanessa Bell 
at home in Charleston, Sussex
'View into a Garden', 1926
by Vanessa Bell
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''The Garden Room'
by Duncan Grant
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If you would like to read further, try….Vanessa Bell, 1879-1961, British painter and interior designer;  Duncan Grant, 1885-1978, British painter and designer; Virginia Woolf, 1882-1941, British writer; Bloomsbury Group ; Charleston HouseMonk's House and for the definitive word on the Bloomsbury Group visit Sunday Taylor's blog, Ciao Domenica, start with her post The Bloomsbury Girls.  She is a Bloomsbury girl at heart.



One last one….a room to love in Dorset, the studio workspace of Philip Jacobs, a design artist with Kaffee Fassets Studio. Thinking gardens, inside and out. 

Studio workspace: Philip Jacobs is a freelance artist 
of furnishing and wallpaper designs. 
His studio sits in an old converted stable 
at his home in Dorset.
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February 16, 2015
28 Day Writing Challenge, #15
From the hearth side
New England time


28 Day Writing Challenge
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