There are many new products available today to add variety to your design plans. Fortunately they are many that now make the addition to detail more affordable. Stone veneers or faux stone, as some people refer to it has become a very popular application both on the inside and outside of your home. How you use these materials is key to the outcomes. The old saying goes that the “devil is in the details,” and for a landscape designer its all about details.

Designing ‘place’ starts with listening.

Listening to what is being said, but also hearing what is not.

Reading between the lines is my favourite part of design; Working through the ideas, running with a gut feeling and tying it all together in simple, functional, form. Details are what make the connection between user and place, truly successful causing the design to come alive.

Details are very much on purpose. They take time and thought, And are worth it!
So what are we talking about here? What are the details? Details are the thoughtful, intentional application of shape, colour, material, connection and form.

Sadly, details are often rushed past, glazed over or the first to be cut because they are seen as “extras”.

Today we are swirling in deadlines, instant gratification and exhaustion. (OK, maybe that’s a glimpse at my everyday life, but really, I know I’m not alone! At least that’s what I keep telling myself…)

We don’t have time or money for detail! What I’m saying is, we need to make time and allowance for them. Let me tell you how.

1. First off, breathe. You don’t have to do them all at once. (Unless you can and in that case, stop reading and get to work)

2. Now, take a minute, be present and listen to your gut. What resonates with you the most?

3. Make a decision. Be intentional and go for it!
Have you ever been somewhere, looked around and thought, really, I could be anywhere in the world right now. I feel that way when I’m in large suburban areas. Everything starts to blend together. Now, think of some of the most memorable places you have been. What makes them different? See where I’m going here? Connection to place is all in the details. Details make a space unique. They make it a place. Place is something we need.

Be it public or private space, backyard or business, details are what makes the difference.
Don’t be shy! The last thing we need is more of the same.

This design project completed on Bell Street, in New Glasgow last year combines both natural and concrete products and illustrates how attention to little details can make impact.


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This fall Rachael gets her last little one on the bus to start school. The first day of school will fill many a Mama with a load of emotion. It’s safe to say that a glass of wine will be had by more than a few that day. So, it’s fitting that Rachael chats with grape growers Dave and Anita Poirier who are producing their own wine along the West River. Cheers to a new season and fresh starts!