One tool…

May 29, 2020

for many tasks. I’m wondering how I did without one of these until now. Or, maybe I’m just tired of McGuyvering my way through the garden and decided I needed something new. From cutting through roots, digging up weeds or dividing mature plants, there isn’t a task that this Landscapers Hori Hori won’t be able to simplify.  A cross between a knife, a trowel and a saw this indispensable tool is constructed of heat treated alloy steel for lightness, strength and durability… right here in the USA.  With the entire Summer ahead of us it might just be a good idea to embrace it fully equipped. 

 

 

photo: https://www.shopterrain.com/products/landscapers-hori-hori?via=Z2lkOi8vdXJibi9Xb3JrYXJlYTo6Q2F0YWxvZzo6Q2F0ZWdvcnkvNDkzQkQ1Mjg

 

Is it me or is everyone having a difficult time keeping track of what month it is…what day it is? It seems like during the entirety of this Corona lock down the weather has kept us thinking it’s more like Fall than Spring and the sun has taken a back seat to the gray and rainy skies. A little inspiration seems to be in order to get us through the next few weeks to be sure. While the upcoming holiday weekend and unofficial start of Summer will be different than we know it, a little inspiration may ease the discomfort of continued shelter in place and social distancing orders. The simplest of things can bring new joy and freshness to a stale situation or outlook so look around with new eyes and see what happens. I’ve selected a few items from the simplequietmodern archives that might help get you started.

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Top to bottom:

Sheltering in place might have you contemplating a second place to get away to once we’re able to move around freely. And, while working from home may become the new normal for some, a simplequietmodern cabin with WIFI may be a neccesity.  Photo: Leonardo Finotti via Remash Tumblr

 

A comfortable place to kick back, either tucked away in the yard or on the front porch for those all important breaks between Zoom meetings. This reissue of the originalWestport Adirondack Chair design comes to mind immediately. Photo:Loll Designs

 

A simple spring dinner of steamed artichokes takes advantage of the season and satisfies while keeping time in the kitchen to a minimum. Photo: gp

 

If you need something to keep your hands busy and out of that bag of chips, this Elementary Wrap by Purl Soho is it. A modern hand-knit using their Linen Quill yarn results in a lovely seasonal project that will take care of that spring chill or tick off a special gift completed for the upcoming holidays.  photo: gp  https://simplequietmodern.com/2018/05/02/elementary/

 

The garden centers are open again. A quick stroll through might just tempt you to make a modification to your present landscaping. This Sunjoy Gold Pillar Barberry will add a little brightness even on those days the sun stays hidden. photo: gp

 

Why wait for the September running of the Kentucky Derby? This perfectly modern julep works for me any day . http://gardenandgun.com/media/mint-julep photo: gp  

 

Cabin Fever? Get out of the house and take a look at your place from a new perspective. Take a few phone pics from different approaches and try to view things as your neighbors or passersby do. You might be surprised to find that things are looking pretty good.  photo: gp

 

Who doesn’t like ice cream? My recipe for Pistachio Semifreddo will have you amazed that yes, you made it yourself.  photo: gp https://simplequietmodern.com/2015/05/24/whip-it-fold-it-freeze-it/

 

River rocks…or landscapers egg rock… can add that little touch of zen when used used in the landscape. As long as you’re home you might as well start another project to keep you outside. photo: gp

 

Not all potato salads are created equal. While I can often get a craving for potato salad like Mom made, I most often opt for this salad from Martha Stewart’s Everyday Food…Potatoes Vinaigrette. Photo: gp   https://simplequietmodern.com/2014/05/04/a-simple-lighter-spin/

 

Memorial Day weekend is when those pots get planted. But, with what? I’m not into annuals…too bright. And last year’s planting of lily grass and Blonde Ambition Blue Grama grass while beautiful, did not winter over as I had expected. Now, I guess it’s back to my original choice…Blue Dune Grass. Fast grower, simple modern statement and, the deer won’t eat them. Check, check and check.  photo: gp

 

 

 

Staycation

April 26, 2020

While we are all itchin’ to get back to work and life as we knew it, that might still be a while off. As the country moves into a “soft” reopening of the economy there might be an even softer release on travel restrictions keeping us closer to home. Upgrading your outdoor spaces might ease things a bit, making your own backyard into a vacation destination you’ll actually enjoy. The Swell Group of classic modern outdoor seating, designed by Richard Schultz for Knoll, will have you feeling like you’ve just landed in Palm Springs or Miami Beach. Based on his original 1966 group, these new pieces are generously proportioned and still, like the originals, need no cushions to provide maximum comfort. The cost of plane tickets and hotel rooms translated into a modern outdoor living statement will easily keep you sitting pretty for years.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

photos: https://hivemodern.com/pages/product6407/knoll-richard-schultz-swell-single-seat-club-chair

 

If it’s March…

March 13, 2020

it’s time for Daffodils. The birth flower for March, nothing can make a simple, more cheerful, Spring-like statement like they can. And, while they’re still available, the Heath Ceramics bud vase is perfect for displaying these shots of vibrant color. I’m thinking multiple vases grouped for mass appeal or scattered about to spread the wealth with their electricity and gentle fragrance. Better act fast, this bud vase in Zinc, from the 2019 Heath Winter Seasonal Collection, is only available until the end of this month. Could a handful of Daffs help you or a friend deal with the new uncertainty of dealing with Covid-19? It couldn’t hurt.

 

 

 

 

 

Daffodil photos: gp

Heath bud vase photo: https://www.heathceramics.com/collections/winter-seasonal-2019

 

I can’t wait…

February 17, 2020

for Spring to arrive or the UPS driver to deliver a pair of these to my door. From Vivobarefoot, Gobi II, a leather zero drop desert boot that satisfies my minimalist style. While I’ve always had a pair of Chukkas at the ready, these in black will take me through all day every day, work and play in barefoot comfort. A perfect segue from ice and gray skies to blue skies and green grass.

 

photos:  https://www.vivobarefoot.com/us/mens/everyday/gobi-ii-mens?colour=BlacK

 

 

 

We’ll See

February 9, 2020

We go through this often…the prediction of an early Spring followed immediately by snow, cold and yes, more snow. It’s Winter. In reality, the official start of Spring is still weeks away…plenty of time to prepare for it’s arrival, get inspired or simply switch things up to ward off cabin fever.

 

top to bottom:

Last year’s garden addition under this years last “dusting”

Forcing an armful of flowering branches definitely speaks to the promise of Spring.

Get super proactive and start now to plan a trip to the New Mexican desert next Winter and paying a visit to the Georgia O’Keefe residence and museum in Abiquiu. photo: https://www.okeeffemuseum.org/

Get on it and shake things up with this Alexander McQueen inspired velvet from Knoll Textiles. If not a chair then perhaps just a pillow will do the trick. Photo: https://www.knoll.com/knolltextileproductdetail/Arezzo

You could always spend more quality time with your favorite sidekick. Yes, even knee deep snow can be fun with this guy.

Now is a great time to revisit, reconsider and actually finish a stalled project. While these balls of newsprint yarn were created during snow days of Winters past, they still sit waiting to be transformed. Now’s as good a time as any.

Pull out that Sharpie and a clean pad. Start sketching and editing and committing some new ideas for your Spring garden projects to paper for when the weather finally breaks.

A little sustenance. The simplest recipe ever…Labneh. This Mediterranean dip and spread is basically Greek yogurt with a good pinch of salt and squeeze of lemon stirred in, placed into a cheesecloth lined strainer and left to drain out the whey over 24 hours. Serve up with a drizzle of good olive oil and a healthy dusting of Za’atar to spread on a variety of breads and vegetables.

 

Photos except where noted: gp

 

 

Time Flies

January 12, 2020

Well, it just does. There is no other explanation for the fact that simplequietmodern has just celebrated it’s eighth anniversary. At this time each year I am always interested in what subjects, products or photos you’ve been drawn to most. Black fences seems to have shot to the top of the list again along with a few of my favorites from Heath Ceramics…their new Muir flatware, classic field tiles and the updated Coupe line of Edith Heath’s iconic dinnerware. The simplicity of Spring flowering bulbs rounds out the top 5. Nice. So, thank you for faithfully checking in and checking things out…for indulging me in inspiring you and for your continued support and friendship.

 

 

 

 

photos:

Black fence: https://www.gardenista.com/posts/trend-alert-black-fences/

Muir flatware, Coupe Line and Heath Field Tile: https://www.heathceramics.com/

Tulips: gp

 

Fall Back….Look Forward

November 7, 2019

Straight from the Netherlands, a surprising and welcome gift of flowering bulbs. Now, as the days are growing shorter, I can try to ward off any Seasonal Affective Disorder by planting the Giant Allium and Parrot Tulips, take a deep breath and anticipate the arrival of their dramatic blooms come Spring. It’s always great to have something to look forward to so, before the snow flies, you might want to to plant some yourself.

photos:gp

 

Indispensable

June 10, 2019

Make short work of your gardening projects with what will soon become your favorite tool. This expanding and telescoping garden rake will handle larger jobs like full clean- up to detailing your beds and borders. The expanding tines can be narrowed to accommodate tight spaces or used fully spread for gathering leaves and debris. And, the handle length adjustment? Your back will thank you.

Photos: https://www.shopterrain.com/products/expanding-telescopic-rake?via=Z2lkOi8vdXJibi9Xb3JrYXJlYTo6Q2F0YWxvZzo6Q2F0ZWdvcnkvRkI2OTYyQjI

In the beginning…

May 25, 2019

it started with a few random planks and a view. When he envisioned a piece of seating from which to enjoy a drink and take in the lake view at his cottage in Westport, New York, I’m not sure Thomas Lee knew what was about to happen. Over 100 years later his original Westport Adirondack Chair is still going strong. Countless variations over the decades have brought us back to Lee’s original design painstakingly recreated in recyced materials by Loll, making it even more modern. And, just in time for Summer it’s on sale and available in 9 colors…neutral, classic or bright. Who knew 328 recycled milk jugs could look so good?

 

Photos: https://lolldesigns.com