Recently I embarked on an intensive, two-day hunt for the perfect succulent pillow. I wanted it for the love seat in my home’s 5×5 entry, where I keep 40 small, low-light succulents in a dozen containers. These are shades of green, bronze, brown, terra-cotta, and rose.
Small euphorbias, gasterias and haworthias thrive in the entry, out of direct sun.
I bought seven pillows and two area rugs, and charged about $500 on my credit card. No biggie, I was going to return all but one pillow and one rug, right? Well, yes, but an embroidered and beaded cactus pillow from Pier One was a keeper regardless. Only $40! (I have a thing for throw pillows.)
I figured just about any multicolored succulent pillow would work. The walls are tan, the trim cream, the floor concrete gray, the door and wrought iron brown, and the seat cushion dark blue-green. Hoping that a rug would add punch and help pull everything together, I bought a 3×5 one striped in brown, green, blue and beige. But—I should have known this, being a Pier One fan—the colors were so crisp, they made everything else look shabby. Also, when I saw it in situ, I realized it really needed some orange-red.
The first go-round: The pillow is a bit too small for the love seat. The rug, though the right size and a nice texture, lacks colors necessary to unify the design.
I found a pillow with a watercolor of a cactus garden that seemed the right shape and size: rectangular (“lumbar”) and bigger than Pier One’s for less money. Score! Or so I thought.
Cactus pillow and rug at World Market.
Back home. Aargh. No pillow with a white background looked right. There’s no white in the entry, and they all screamed “bedroom.” Yet while at World Market I’d also bought an orangey-red rag rug trimmed in blue-green. It looked great! All along it wasn’t the pillow that mattered most, it was the rug.
My Dorothy-in-Oz moment: I had the perfect pillow all along.
I quickly went shopping in my own home, grabbing a pillow with the right colors from the living room sofa and two stretched canvas prints of agaves from the hallway. (Both prints are from my online Zazzle store.) None of the succulent pillows ended up in the entry. But I did keep two. One is now on my bed, the other on an armchair. The entry pillow has a bird on it, but hey, I’m into birds.
Cost: Two pillows that I kept despite not needing either one: $60. Rag rug from World Market: $40. Total: $100. Plus a day and a half of my time, but it was fun, so I can’t complain.
Do you, like me, need to hunt, gather and try things on before everything clicks? If so, you probably agree that the hard part—and hopefully you’re better at this than I am—is taking things back.
Now (drum roll) my pup Lucky would like to show you “his” new entryway.
Lucky demonstrates “downward dog” on his new yoga mat.
He’s probably meditating on his breakfast.
The love seat is ideal for cat-watching.
Lucky resembles the entry’s whimsical metal watchdog. At left are a pair of Talavera “shoes” and a frog pot atop a larger container. In the square pot are ‘Pink Blush’ aloes.
Items opposite the love seat include Gasteraloe ‘Green Ice’ in bloom.
April 13, 2018 — Cactus as a design element is trending, popping up on pajamas, place mats, wallpaper and more. As awareness of the plants grows, cliche images of “cactus” as saguaros and prickly-pear will give way to… [Continue reading]
If you enjoy gardening, you’ve no doubt experienced how it can be a form of meditation and a treat for all the senses. But have you considered how simply looking at certain plants induces a feeling of serenity? You can discover this simply by enhancing a sitting area with succulents that incorporate geometric patterns and spirals…[Continue reading]
Dec. 27, 2017 ~ Long a pariah plant, cactus is becoming cool. The first edition of my book, Designing with Succulents (Timber Press, 2007) showed few cacti—mainly golden barrels. A decade later, the completely revised second edition devotes 15 pages to numerous varieties of spiny succulents in gardens large and small. [Continue reading]
https://debraleebaldwin.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/IMG_6111.jpg19303130Debrahttps://debraleebaldwin.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/Logo-White-H200px.pngDebra2018-04-11 10:37:582018-04-13 09:39:29Did I Find the Perfect Succulent Pillow?