Visiting Bunny Williams and John Rosselli’s Garden in Falls Village, Connecticut

The front facade of Bunny Williams and John Rosselli’s Falls Village, Connecticut retreat, which was the subject of Bunny’s iconic coffee table book “An AFFAIR with a HOUSE“, where she covers the decorating of the house and other buildings and the laying out of the gardens.

Bunny signing my copy of her book, “Bunny Williams’ Point of View, Three Decades of Decorating Elegant and Comfortable Houses”, that I had brought from home.

One of the high-points of the Garden Conservancy’s Open Days Program is a visit to Bunny Williams and her husband John Rosselli’s estate called “The Manor” in Falls Village, Connecticut. Bunny and John are both famous for being “Taste Makers”.  Bunny is a nationally known interior decorator whose work has been seen in every interior decorating magazine imaginable, an author of books about interior decorating and gardening,  and she also designs furniture and all kinds of decorative home accessories.  John is the owner of John Rosselli and Associates with showrooms in New York City, Washington, DC, Dania Beach, FL and Chicago, IL.  He specializes in fabric, wall covering, leather, furniture, lighting, antiques & accessories and rugs.

On a recent Saturday in July, the couple cordially invited garden lovers from far and wide to see what’s new and wonderful at their north-west Connecticut weekend retreat which has been featured, over the years, in many books about living with style.  So come along as I give you a little tour of their wonderful place. Continue reading

Posted in Garden Visits (Road Trips), The Summer Garden | 8 Comments

Visiting The Real Housewives of New York (RHONY) Dorinda Medley’s home, Blue Stone Manor, in Great Barrington, Massachusetts

Dorinda Medley and me in her Living Room at Blue Stone Manor, on the day of the Lenox Garden Club Tour.

Garden tour patrons approaching the front door of the mansion.

On July 15, 2017 The Lenox Garden Club held its biennial garden tour, and one of the show-stopping properties visited was Blue Stone Manor. Blue Stone Manor is the country home of Dorinda Medley who is a reality TV star on Bravo’s The Real Housewives of New York City. Dorinda and four other property owners were kind enough, to open their gorgeous homes and spectacular grounds, for the day, as a fundraiser for The Lenox Garden Club. People from far and wide traveled to Great Barrington, Massachusetts for the “sold out” tour. This blog post shows some of the well-appointed rooms and grounds at Blue Stone Manor, decorated by the super tasteful, effervescent and charming Dorinda Medley. Continue reading

Posted in Garden Visits (Road Trips), The Summer Garden | 9 Comments

Outlining (Edging) a Vegetable or Flower Garden with Brick

One of my many projects that I’ve so far tackled this Spring was the redesign and outlining of my vegetable garden in brick. For years, I just had the planting spaces surrounded by black plastic edging, but finally it had come a time for a visual upgrade and this post shows how I did it. Continue reading

Posted in Fred's Garden at Whimsey Hill House, Garden Design Principles, The Autumn(Fall) Garden, The Spring Garden, The Summer Garden | 17 Comments

A look at the 2018 end of June garden, here at Whimsey Hill House

Over the years I’ve given my readers a photographic tour of my garden, showing them what it looked like at its peak, which occurs somewhere in the middle-end of July when most of the Summer blooming perennials and annuals are at their best. For this post I’m showing you what it looks like right now, in June, after I’ve so far, by myself, hand dug into the dirt (I’m not calling it soil because it’s just too worn out) twenty four 3.8 cubic feet bales of sphagnum peat moss to amend it.

I did not amend every square inch of the garden, just the spaces where I plant annuals, because for the last two years things started to not grow that well.  It was time to do this labor intensive project, because while working the peat moss into the ground I rarely saw a worm and the sphagnum moss that I initially worked into the ground years ago had disappeared leaving just the gravely-sandy dirt that I started with.

Twenty four bales was just enough to do the front garden, my newly designed vegetable garden (which will be shown in the next post)  and a new space where I’ve decided to plant the dahlias that I keep from year to year.  So let’s start the tour… Continue reading

Posted in Fred's Garden at Whimsey Hill House, Roses, Peonies, Tulips, etc, The Summer Garden | 22 Comments

Line porous terracotta pots with tall kitchen trash bags before planting to prevent plants from drying out too quickly

Each Spring, besides planting many annuals in the garden that I grow from seed or buy at local garden centers, I also put out quite an assortment of plants in containers that I display on my deck and patio, by the pool, along the side of my house, by my front door and even by my mailbox. Over the years I’ve amassed a collection of planting vessels that run the gambit from terracotta, to metal, to ceramic and plastic. Most of my planting containers I can just fill with soil from the garden and plant away, but I have a couple of, not inexpensive pots that are made of porous terracotta that seems to pull the moisture from the potting soil, which makes the plants dry out quickly. To remedy that moisture-wicking situation I line the pots with plastic cut from tall kitchen trash bags before adding my plants, which easily remedies the problem. This post is a quick pictorial showing how easy it is to do. Continue reading

Posted in The Spring Garden | 4 Comments

Fred Gonsowski Garden has passed the THREE MILLION point for Page Views/Articles Read

Fred Gonsowski in the “Studio” at Bunny Williams and John Rosselli’s Falls Village. Connecticut estate.

A photo of the Insight screen on my WordPress dashboard showing the 3,014,775 Page Views/Articles Read by the 1,798,798 visitors viewing this blog.

Dash board close-up.

Recently my blog Fred Gonsowski Garden Home passed the Three Million point for page views/articles read, and in a way I think that was a great accomplishment.  As with all things, it wasn’t just about my writing and illustrations, but about the many people who, hundreds of thousands of times,  posted my articles on their Pinterest sites, the San Francisco Chronicle, BuzzFeed, eHow and Red Book who used my articles as references or resources for their pieces, which gave me some extra attention, the people who linked my website with the articles that they were writing and the many people who just told their friends to look at what I was doing. Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 30 Comments

Arranging furniture in an 11 foot 6 inch by 11 foot 6 inch section of a 13 foot 8 inches wide by 18 foot long Living Room

Recently one of the readers of this blog named Joy asked for my help with the arranging of furniture in her living room, which is open to her kitchen and dining area.  Joy has downsized from a larger house to a smaller space and arranging furniture in her new, somewhat open concept, home has become a bit of a challenge.   Joy’s dilemma became the starting point for this blog post.  I’ve come up with eight possible layouts that she might want to try; hopefully one or more will be to Joy’s liking. Continue reading

Posted in Arranging Living Room Furniture, Interior Decorating Principles | 10 Comments

Hanging Pictures on a Staircase, Creating a Gallery Wall.

Hanging a Gallery Wall on a Staircase.

Hanging a visually interesting grouping of pictures, on the wall alongside a staircase, is not just about getting out your hammer, picture hanging hooks, the framed things you want to mount on the wall and randomly going at it.  Creating a gallery wall is all about lining up the edges of frames, either vertically and-or horizontally with each other, so you can make a presentation of, sometimes diverse images, that hopefully in the end look good next to each other.   This blog post shows how easy it is to create a gallery wall that looks thought out and has some structure to it. Continue reading

Posted in Hanging Pictures and Mirrors / Arranging Knickknacks and Collectables, Interior Decorating Principles | 10 Comments