Thursday, June 30, 2011

A Garden Tour: Sycamore Hill Farm...Part II

This is Part II of my tour of Sycamore Gardens in Marcellus, NY. 
To see "Part I"click HERE.

I wish I knew the history behind this structure. I know they were disassembling it and using the stone in the gardens but I recently heard they were rebuilding it. It's a mystery to me! One of the things that I like about this tour is that we were free to roam around the garden by ourselves but I did notice a small tram driving patrons around and I heard the driver telling some of the history. I guess I should take the ride at least once.

The Dragon Pegoda Garden features a Japanese style pavilion. 

The pavilion is surrounded by traditional stones, carvings, and various ferns. 

Crossing the water by way of the stepping stones is always fun. 

Just one of the never ending surprises that you find around each corner.

Water lilies in the Koi Pond.

It was very relaxing to sit by the pond for a few moments, take in the landscape and watch the koi fish. No two were alike- each had its own unique markings in the most beautiful colors!

Another photo from the back of the Hanford's home.

...And another!

More Koi fish- the photos just don't do them justice though.

In the middle of the pond is a spire of water that shoots up ...oh, I would guess at least a hundred feet!
The spray hits you as you are crossing those stepping stones I showed you earlier.

One last little garden area that we explored was right in the very front of the house, near the road. It was a very shady area with a water garden in the center. There is a tall shrub border that shields the garden from passing cars.

...and of course a large statue in the middle of the water feature.

This garden was filled mostly with ferns and hostas.

This little garden really felt like an outdoor room- a little secret garden!

The entrance of the home. Everything is just decorated so tastefully.

Visit the Sycamore Hill website to find out about upcoming tours and events.
 I hope you have a chance to visit this truly exquisite garden!

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

A Garden Tour: Sycamore Hill Farm...Part I

I went on a garden tour over the weekend with my mom. I have taken this tour twice before but both times on Mother's Day. On Mother's Day, the gardens are filled with spring flowering trees, tulips and thousands of emerging perennials. It was absolutely spectacular to see the gardens in June!

Hundreds of Hostas were just bursting. Every kind of Hosta that you can imagine- amazing! The morning that we went, it was a bit drizzly, which made everything look so lush!

This is the stately home of the Hanford family. 
The Hanford's own Sycamore Hill Garden. It is nestled amidst the rolling hills of Marcellus, New York.


The gardens cover more than twenty five acres. We were there for three hours and did not make it to every border that we wanted to see. 

How did this get started?
The story that I heard is that on Mother's Day, (I don't know how many years ago) Mrs. Hanford's wish was that she could just spend the entire day in the garden planting and doing work. This became a tradition and every year the gardens grew in size and scope. Now, they generously open the garden for certain fund raising groups to do tours on Mother's Day. A few years back, they added a Father's Day tour (which is now called the Summer Solstice tour and is held a couple of weeks after Father's Day).

Starting this year they are offering a tour in the fall. That will be just as spectacular and I can't wait to go!

They have collected over eighty bronze statues from all over the world.

This "Iron Tree" was magnificent.

Every where you went, there was a place to sit and take in the view. They encourage you to bring a picnic.

I took almost two hundred photos! It's a photographers dream.

Even an amateur like me did okay with my camera phone!

I would love to show you every single statue- each one was so unique and every garden setting that they were placed in was just breathtaking

Marcellus is a small town of about 6000 people southwest of Syracuse, New York. It's very hilly which made for some gorgeous long range views.

The row of Arborvitae that you see in the distance is the perimeter of the Maze!

Here are some pictures from inside the maze. When we first came here years ago, the trees were only to our knees!

 Now they stand over ten feet high and you can actually get lost in the maze. We did (just a little)!

If you make it to the middle, this is what greets you! I can't even show you the Minotaur from the front- you would surely blush :)

This picture does not do this justice. These weeping trees practically bring tears to your eyes!

The way they are lined up makes such a statement- they truly looked mournful!

 Tomorrow I will show you some more of the pictures that I took or you can check out the album on my Ispirato Design Facebook Page. I've added many more there and will eventually put all of them in that album.
TTFN (TaTa For Now)
I hope you enjoyed the tour so far!

Monday, June 27, 2011

The Monday Mix: Fashion and Decor

Happy Monday everyone! I truly hope you had a wonderful weekend. 
Over the next couple of days I will be posting some pics from an incredible garden tour that I did on Saturday with my mom- I took almost two hundred pictures! I'll sort through them and show you the best of the best!

Make Under My Life

Today is Monday though and that means another Monday Mix! I'm excited that there was a little more participation last week. A few different readers sent me their mixes! Check them out at the end of the post.

Drum roll please....The new Monday Mix is 
Jewelry and Decor! 

I think this is an easy one- every tablescape, dresser or vanity looks pretty with a stylish piece of jewelry on display! Even walls can be jazzed up with a display of jewelry- check out some of the inspiration that I found:

Modern House Insight

Make Under My Life
Perfect examples of Jewelry and Decor as well as storage and display mixing effortlessly. 

Have you been inspired to share your version of today's 
Monday Mix: Jewelry and Decor?
Please send your pics to:
*I will post them next Monday. 
*If you have a blog I will link your pic back to your blog! 
*If you use your photo in one of your posts I would like to link directly to that post so please include the link. Also, please display my Monday Mix button somewhere on your post or sidebar.
(An "I've Been Featured" button is coming soon!)

Last week the Monday Mix was Tote Bags and Decor. Carrie from Hazardous Design sent me a picture from her new mudroom reveal. As an avid follower of Carrie's blog I was so excited to see it and she did not disappoint  Here is her Tote Bag and Decor photo but you really need to check out the entire make over that she and her husband, Chris, did. It's beautiful. Thanks for sharing Carrie!

Hazardous Design

Ricki Jill from Art @ Home sent me her Tote Bag and Decor mix- isn't it pretty? A beautiful assortment of florals, checks and needlepoint pillows! The tote bag looks right at home :)

Art @ Home
The week before last, the Monday Mix was Shoes and Decor. This is definitely a case of "better late than never"! This really is a beautiful composition- Thank you so much for also sharing this Ricki Jill! 

Art @ Home
I really appreciate these ladies taking the time to compose these photos and send them to me, if you have time, please check out their blogs!

Send your Jewelry and Decor pics to:

Friday, June 24, 2011

Fun Friday Find: One Headboard, Three Styles

I came across this article in an old Southern Accents magazine. Birmingham designer Liz Woods was asked to design a headboard that could anchor the look of three unique bedroom styles. She chose to use a simple rectangle shape, upholstered it and added nailhead trim which you know I love. (See why Here) This really would be a simple headboard to make! 
Have you or would you try this? 
Look at the different looks that Woods created:

White bedding with purple ikat pillow
"I designed this headboard with one goal in mind: to keep it classic and enduring," says designer Liz Woods. "I chose a simple rectangular shape that is versatile and easy to slipcover."

This first look is feminine and pretty. A tone on tone design with a contrasting Ikat pillow that completes the look!

Natural linen fabrics on bed

My personal favorite ,except I could never have a bare tile floor in the bedroom. I do love the more masculine, tailored look  of the bed. I've never cared for bedskirts- do you? ...Besides,  tucking in the bedding shows off more nailhead trim! 

White duvet with green leaf motif and orange accents

The natural rug and green patterned duvet give this bedroom a very organic feel. Notice the contrasts in texture- quilted skirt, fluffy duvet, velvet pillows and natural weave rug. Remarkably, it works!

This last photo is a different headboard altogether but with the same lines. Again, simple enough to make albeit a little more work with all of the tufting but WOW- I think it would be worth it. 
Now this is fun! 

Which of these looks is your favorite? 

BTW, There is still time to send me your pics for The Monday Mix- Totebags and Decor
Send photos to before Sunday evening.

Have a great weekend!