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Archive for January, 2015

skyview landscapes. bunny mellon photo

Garden designer, stylesetter, and philanthropist Rachel “Bunny” Mellon She designed and planted a number of significant gardens, including the White House Rose Garden, and assembled one of the largest collections of rare horticultural books.

In Winter when all the flowering plants have collapsed, I feel this is the time to go outside and look at the structure of your garden. I love walking through the garden on these frigid days. It helps me anticipate the return of spring and what it will bring. I believe that weather is one of the most critical design issues for a garden. I think good design features the many faces of the weather. I feel that you have to establish some structure- some good bones.  Good bones can be built upon, or stand on their own.  Structure in the landscape in our zone has to take the winter season into account.

skyview landscapes Boxwoods

In Vanity Fair some years ago this, below, stopped me.  A kindred spirit.  Who exactly is Bunny Mellon?  In the fullness of time, may she keep returning to your radar, as she does mine.

skyview landscapes. bunny melonMellon was born into a pharmaceutical fortune in 1910 (her grandfather Jordan W. Lambert manufactured Listerine) and married into a banking one in 1948, when she wed Paul Mellon, her second husband. Mellon’s greatest acclaim came not from her masterpiece acquisitions, however, but from her self-taught skill at sculpting the natural world.

skyview landscapes architectrual digest

Garden designer Lanning Roper, called her “the leading landscape genius in America.” Far less known are the remarkable interiors  she created in the dozen-plus residences that Mellon and her family occupied in the U.S., France, and the Caribbean.

skyview Bunny Mellon design

Relatively small, intimate houses were Mellon’s preference, livably elegant and skirting clear of pretension. “Make it look like we just brought it down from the attic,” Mellon told Bruce Budd, one of the decorators she worked with (the roster also included English master John Fowler and American tastemaker Billy Baldwin).

skyview Bunny Mellon design Oyster Harbor yard

In every room in every house, Mellon placed what she called “standing herb trees,” which she developed in 1952 while recovering from tuberculosis, having been inspired by topiaries seen in the medieval manuscripts and early garden manuals.

skyview Bunny Mellon standing herb trees

A bird painting by Balthus hangs in Bunny Mellon’s bedroom in her villa at Antigua’s Mill Reef Club, where decorative artist Paul Leonard created Swedish-style painted floors that mimic stone paving; as Mellon once said, “I liked the way marble floors reflect light, but these are warmer and quieter.”

skyview landscapes. bunny melon Antiqua Residence

November 24, 2014 I read an article that saddened me, it said:

Southerby’s Auction house says its multi-day sales of Racel Bunny Mellon’s  furnishings art, jewelry, and other objects totaled $218 Million.

Three works — two paintings by Mark Rothko and a fancy vivid blue diamond — fetched over $30 million.The 9.75-carat pear shaped gem set an auction record for any blue diamond.

The benefits went to The Gerard B. Lambert Foundation. It supports The Oak Spring Garden Library in Upperville, Virginia, which houses Mellon’s collection of works related to landscape design, horticulture and natural history.

Bunny pasted away at the age of 103, in March of 2014. This lost was felt through out the design world. Rachel Bunny Mellon had her first garden epiphany as a young girl she wrote “This towering forest of scent and white flowers was the beginning of ceaseless interest, passion and pleasure in gardens and books,” she wrote. “Like a magic carpet it has carried me through life’s experiences, discoveries, joys and sorrows. In sadness especially, it has been a hiding-place until my heart mended.”

Thanks for letting me share some of my favorite gardens with you! Stay tuned…

XOXO

M

 

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Times Union Home Expo Banner

 

Home Expo 2015

Building a new home? Remodeling a room in your home? Well this year we have so much in store for you. Meet Jason Cameron February 8th, from the DIY Network. Watch our website for additional information on shows and events. My name is Michele Conti I am a local Designer/Blogger in the Albany Area! I will be here for the next few weeks, sharing information about the home expo, giving you DIY ideas and little blurbs about some of the Vendors and shows that the exhibitors will schedule during the expo. Check out our link on Times Union Home Expo. Below is a quick and easy DIY project for you… With a little help from Behr Paints available at Lowes located in the Times Union Center booth 284-285 this crafty idea was a breeze!!

Couch Seating DIY

Check out the Times Union Home Expo 2015 Web site and read my blog everyday now thru February 6th for great info and DIY projects!!

Chat with you soon!!!! Stay Tuned for more project information!

 

M

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