Glass in the Garden

Not all Blooms Have to be Real

Came Glass Ground Stake

My post today is a little about our Garden Walk this year. I have been a proponent for keeping the Garden Walk new and fresh for visitors. Since we are only one block long with about 50 homes participating (outstanding concentration of gardens), I believe we have to have new things for visitors to see that have not been shown previously. Pretty basic thinking.

So this winter, I decided well in advance to create ornaments for my garden that directly related to the garden itself. I wanted to produce some art outside my area of expertise and learn a new craft. I took up stained glass making. By the very generous nature of some very dear friends of mine, they gifted me much of the materials necessary to produce my glass works at home in my leisure. This couple is the talented duo that designed the Fiesta Garden. If you did not see this post, it was a fine example of ingenuity and craft.

Not all Birds Need to Fly

Came and Copper Foil Garden Ground Stake

Lucky for me, there was a very talented stained glass artist living in my area. I signed up for classes at Gleam & Glimmer Glass Studio in North Tonawanda, New York. Suzanne, the owner, was very experienced at her craft and a friendly woman eager to see her students succeed. And I was diligent. Many cut fingers later, I produced some pieces that I could use in the garden.

Came and Copper Foil Garden Ground Stake

As an artist/designer, I drew my own patterns. From this I learned from many mistakes. Sure, I could have made more refined stained glass using existing patterns, but I learned much more designing my own. I also made it a bit challenging for Suzanne in the process, but like I said, she is a very patient teacher. And she needed to be for my next project.

Not all Doors Need to be Ordinary

Copper Foil Door Panels

Door from Inside

It took me some time to complete the door panels, but I had a good reason in the Garden Walk for making them. Don’t hesitate to coordinate your landscape with your home, you might be surprised at the overall picture.

Lobelia, Allysum and Ageratum Ground Cover

There are so many ways to create a cohesive design, and color and repetition are but two elements of design.  Some methods are not as obvious as my projects. Since they were for Garden Walk 2010, I could go all out for this year. Next year I will have a different display unless work is so hectic that this can not be done. I do have years like that.

The paint color on the door is Sherwin Williams ‘Lobelia’. I know this is quite literal considering the lobelia is planted in the bed, but it makes a cohesive design on the small property. Colors in the glass translate to the flowers planted. I looked high and low for blue poppy this year, but no seed was to be had. I would have had another literal connection. And believe me people noticed even without the poppies.

I made a variety of projects this year, from sun catchers, to plaques, to plant parasols, to welcome signs. Here are some of my crafts. And by no means am I a craft’s woman. I like to build things and paint things, but general crafts, I am not the one to come to for advice or technique. I go with what I think, not necessarily what I know. Lots of trial and error.  I was just happy my crafts turned out as well as they did and am lucky to have a few real crafters who are always ready to answer questions.

Plant Parasol Shading a New Hydrangea

The plant parasol is one of four that shade my miniature roses in the 90 degree heat of summer. The idea to paint them came from the dollar store finds in blue. I just painted black and yellow. BTW. Not such a fun project. Painting them like poppies took much longer than anticipated.

Greet your guests with a hand painted, original sign. Keep the theme simplified and intact if you like. Here are two simple graphics that I created, one for the front and one for the rear property. Really, it was because I was not so fond of the sign with the hummingbird. I used the graphics from the windows and it did not translate as well as I thought. Take some inspiration, do your own thing, have fun, and make your Garden Walk something special. Garden Walkers will notice.

Not all Signs Need to Advertise

Welcome, Welcome Garden Walkers

If you are local to my area and want your garden ornament to be your own, check out Gleam & Glimmer Glass Studio. You will be glad that you did. Suzanne has a beautiful store where you can purchase pieces by the master, herself. Tell her Donna sent you.


About Garden Walk Garden Talk

I love to photograph, paint, draw, design, garden, travel the world, and pass on a few tips and ideas that I learned through experience as a Master Gardener and architect. I am highly trained in my field and enjoy my work each and every day. I garden in Niagara Falls, NY in zone 6-B. Find me at:
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7 Responses to Glass in the Garden

  1. I love all your beautiful stained glass. With birds and flowers as pretty as yours, they don’t have to be “real.” I love your blue door too. One of my favorite colors and a lot like the color I painted my garden chairs. Great job.

    • Thanks for the compliment. I saw your chairs and of course want some too. I have a bench that I was going to paint lobelia blue, but when it came to dismantling it, I changed my mind. Painting chairs is not a fun task. I got three in my basement, rescued from a curb trash heist, awaiting sanding then painting. They have been down there all summer. Procrastinating and procrastinating more.

  2. Donna, I looked for your blog on Blotanical, but I am not sure what it is listed under. I could not find it under Garden Walk, Garden Talk.

    • I can not figure out blotanical. I was on last night and there must be a waiting period or something. If you search, all you get is that I comment on other blogs. Then click and get my homepage, not my plot. ??????
      I spent loads of crazy time on botanical just trying to add to my favs. I have one and it won’t let me add others. I guess I will get it sometime. There have been views and I don’t know how they got there unless it was from the new blotanists’ page. That is the only place I am listed. Not even under 100 new blogs. Hear my frustration?

      • Blotanical can be a bit confusing at first. When I joined, I was in as a Blotanist right away, I could fave blogs, and pick posts. It took about a week for my blog to be approved and show up. It may be a bit longer now as Stuart is on a 6 month vacation. I don’t know how people have been viewing you, I checked under new blog posts, and under the G’s and could not find you. I am a bit surprised about the favs, that should be easy to add, and doesn’t matter if your blog is listed or not, you can pick favs as a Blotanist.
        Hopefully your blog will be listed on the next batch, no new blogs listed since July 25th, so a new list should be up soon. Leave me a message on my plot if you have any questions.

  3. Artie says:

    Thanks for stopping by the blog! 🙂 Great post.

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