Lost Podcast episode 11: Outdoor Furniture for the Home

Title: Lasting Style Meets Everyday life

Episode 11: Outdoor Furniture for the Home

Male Voice: Chad Harris (CH) Female Voice: Beth Harris (BH)

CHAD:Lasting Style Meets Everyday life – Episode 11 
BETH: Join us on the journey of discovery to our ‘Lasting Style Meets Everyday Life’ podcast. 
CHAD:Join our experts, Beth and Chad Harris from the https://www.thegardengates.com/ 
BETH:As they help you find the perfect home and garden decor for your perfect lifestyle 
CHAD:It’s the summer; it’s a great time to be by the pool and what better to do it in? Fermob Bistro Furniture, check it out online at https://www.thegardengates.com/, 24 great colours straight from France. Hi! This is Chad Harris 
BETH:And this is Beth Harris 
CHAD:And we’re with Lasting Style Meets Everyday Life. Hey, thanks for joining us today and today what are we talking about Beth? 
BETH: Today we’re going to move outside and build our outdoor living space
CHAD:That sounds like a good idea outdoor living space, eating, hanging out, chilling by the pool 
BETH: All of the above
CHAD:All of the above. Alright, so let’s run through – why don’t we start at the front of the house, what do you think? 
BETH: That’s easy, well we’re in the South so when I think of front porches I think about having some sort of maybe indoor or outdoor rugs sorry that you can put on your porch and all-weather rattan set of chairs perhaps with really nice cushions that’s comfortable just to sit back and maybe read a book or chat with a neighbour 
CHAD:You know that’s really a great idea. What about also adding a nice – some people might now want that, they might want a nice bench and put a nice cushion on it as well, or maybe a set of chairs or a chair, so those are both great opportunities, on a front porch, something that’s real simple, easily that kind of blends in with the space, don’t you think? 
BETH: Yes and don’t leave out the swing! Because people love swings too
CHADThat’s right, that’s right. The swing you could make a nice little – your own little custom pillow collaging 
BETH: I was just going to say now-a-days it’s not just a swing, they make bed swings
CHAD:I know, I know definitely I know on our front porch we can never do that but definitely I’ve seen some of those bed swings but I would need an A/C bed swing 
BETH: You probably would
CHAD:Yes probably. Alight so now you – then you walk inside your house and as you walk through your house and you go let’s say to your back yard or your back porch or your back deck; you want to make sure that you have – you time one into the other, don’t you think? 
BETH: Correct. I think you need to know that you can open those doors and go straight out to a place to invite guests to have dinner or just to sit, if you have a swimming pool, maybe by the pool or just around a really lovely garden 
CHAD:You know that makes a lot of sense, you know you talk about having dinner outside, like the Al fresco dining where you almost move your whole dining room outside and it’s great, one of the things you want to make sure is that you have really comfortable chairs and so you talked about the all-weather rattan chairs on the front porch with the cushions, you know if you had four or six of those, you can move a table outside and do seating, with a nice table, really great looking and kind of have a cohesive look. 
BETH: That’s right and if you need overflow you can go to the porch and grab those chairs maybe 
CHAD:That’s it, that’s it. Overflow, it’s like when – it’s almost like Thanksgiving Day, right? 
BETH: Exactly
CHAD:When you can grab all the chairs in the house to get everybody to sit down 
BETH: Always too short
CHAD:You’re right, there’s always you have too short. So then you talked about also like poolside or in the lawn or in the garden; you know having a nice lounge whether it’s like a woven lounge or a cushion lounge I know that Fermob makes a wonderful lounge that is great by the pool, it doesn’t get hot and it’s a woven material as well as Sunset West makes a great chase lounge with the nice sunbrella thick, thick, thick cushion which is also a dynamite piece   
BETH: Oh I love the light coloured one what’s it called, driftwood
CHAD:I know, I know that’s what I knew you were going to say driftwood. You know and then – so what ends up happening is that you know you have both of those things and they can actually live in the same space and so you can have a more modern look with a more classic look and those blend together really well. And so let’s move out of the pool area and lets go into like covered cabana, pool house 
BETH: Gazebo, that’s right, any of those. I think that’s where it’s really nice because you know you’re going to have protection from the rain which can certainly be an issue in the South not so much in California at the moment. But when you have rain issues you know your concern is the furniture whether it’s the cushion or what have you and the upkeep of that. So when I think about the cabanas or the gazebos I love the fact that you can introduce like all the beautiful cushions and things like that. You don’t necessarily have to cover or be concerned about 
CHAD:You know you do bring that up and you know a lot of people when they do outdoor furniture and they even use sunbrella fabrics; what most people don’t remember is you still have care, you still have to take care of them 
BETH: Absolutely
CHAD:Because they get dirty, they need to be cleaned and things like that 
BETH: I try to keep mines inside or cover then you know. We sell covers on the website so you can protect your stuff. So maybe over that table area under the cabana since you’re going to have a roof overhead you could think about two things. You could go with electric lights but I think what would be really lovely would be to go with a candle light which is something you wouldn’t typically think of doing in the house because it can you know, be a little messy 
CHAD:And burn it down 
BETH: But yes I’ve seen we have a couple vendors that have where you put the candles in, you just put it on a pulley so you can bring it down and light the candles and pull it back up 
CHAD:That sounds like a DIY husband project 
BETH: Absolutely, but we women can do it too, don’t you worry
CHAD:Right, I had a feeling you were going to say that. That’s right, so you know, that’s a nice – that really is like super, really really nice feature that you can add. You know you can also add, you know and lot of people are aware of this but you could do tablescapes and the candles that look like cylinders over them or you can even do little floating votives with your qupe, won’t your say? 
BETH: And I was going to say don’t forget Compania has those beautiful ones that are concrete and glass that you can have in your colours that sort of work with your… 
CHAD:Oh right, right because you can do the twelve different finishes with them 
BETH: You can work right in with your tables so all you see are the candles
CHAD:That’s it, that’s it, that is a great idea. I’m glad that you brought that up. So one of the other things that a lot of people start taking or they just don’t know or maybe somebody hasn’t given them any advice on it. Is that so when you’re outside having great – and I know great landscape lighting really as the night sets in and you’re out enjoying yourself sitting on your furniture the landscape lighting really like brings in such a great – I guess like an ambiance of the space, you know? And with the new LED lights it’s great, super-efficient, last forever. That was one of the biggest problems with landscape light shade you changed them all the time, now these bulb last for like ten years. So that’s really nice and that’s a great way to help build that outside and make it look more like an inside, you know. Landscape lighting it like having a table lamp, or a corner lamp or something like that 
BETH: Well and too I think when you said the word LED people just cringle and think of those bright white or blue scary lights. But what we have to tell them is that now they have the LED lights that are in a nice warm colour and look just like the landscape – you would not know 
CHAD:You would not know, you would never know. So when you start building these rooms outside, you really want to think about each piece 
BETH: Each element
CHAD:Yeah, Yeah that’s really the… 
BETH: The lighting, you really want to talk about the comfort of the seating that you’re in, maybe some pottery with some, I don’t know, maybe ferns, ficus something on the back area there so soften it up a bit, you don’t want it to become too hard of an area, you want to make it soft  
CHAD:Yeah, I’m really – I’m super fascinated with the little olive trees 
BETH: Yeah, I really like those too and I think that’s just because it’s not typically something in Louisiana that we see all the time 
CHAD:Yeah, yeah definitely I mean I know like South Florida, places like California 
BETH: People love tropical
CHAD:But like the little olive trees those are really great; they got pots nice cascading things out of that and so you know when you make these outdoor seating areas that you really want to make sure that you tie in all of the other things with you it. Whether it’s your landscape, the types of planting that you do, the nice trees for screening, to block out neighbours and a lot of people don’t have those same problems that we have here in Louisiana where I think probably our most wonderful neighbours that live on one side of us, what they’re 10.5 feet from one side of our house 
BETH: We could probably hang out one window and hand them milk in the morning for their coffee 
CHAD:Exactly, exactly. So when you have those kinds of situations and definitely New Orleans is one of those places but you know New Orleans, Chicago… 
BETH: New York
CHAD:New York definitely where you need to have great privacy screening so that when you’re outside and you’re sitting and enjoying yourself whether its lounging by the pool like your said, you know those kinds of things you really want to finish this place off and it’s like putting curtains on your windows, you know 
BETH: Exactly
CHAD:So, as we talk about different types of furniture, so now let’s break it down into I guess how you buy the furniture because that’s a really important part. You know like one of the very first things that you brought up was the all-weather rattan furniture and as a buyer; most buyers out there on the market today often don’t know I guess like what they’re buying, you know? They just see that one chair is $150 and one chair is $500 and are like “ok the chair that’s $150 looks like the chair that’s $500, what’s the difference?” 
BETH: Right, or sometimes they’ll just think they’ve found a great deal and in fact they don’t realise they’re buying – the material that they’re buying is just not going to hold up in the weather 
CHAD:Right, it’s inferior. You know the biggest thing that buyers of the all-weather rattan and some people don’t know what we’re talking about when we say all-weather rattan so that is the furniture that looks like wicker but it’s made out of pvc, right? 
BETH: Right
CHAD:And so when they’re looking at it, they want to study a couple of things. One the thickness of the weave, if they put their finger on and they press it, does it push in, if it’s springy that’s your first indicator that you basically have straws – you know straw material, in what I mean straw like as in Mc Donald Straw. And then also the other thing that you want to take into consideration is the frame construction. A lot of manufacturers today to cut corners will do things in, make part of them aluminium, part of them in steel, all of it in steel and really the better product is going to be made with 100% aluminium frame wrapped in a thicker pcv weave and what happens from that is a metal frame when it rains rusts and the aluminium frames don’t. So therefore, the frames don’t break, if the frames break , let’s just say the couch now has to be put out on the street corner and taken it away 
BETH: It’s kind of like the, you know the inexpensive blouse you absolutely love but you know you’re only going to get one season out of it. You just have to decide how much you love it because it’s going to be gone in a season. So yeah, definitely take your time, do your homework, and call and ask questions. If you’re looking at something grill them, ask them these questions and what it’s made out of so that you know whether or not it’s going to last and  that’s what the warranty is on it 
CHAD:You know that’s a really good point and then also one of the other thing is because when you’re talking about all-weather rattan typically all those products have a cushion and so you want to make sure the filling material as well as the fabric is really meant to last, you know and we just spoke about this a little while ago that you really want to still cover, you know even though it’s outdoor fabric you want to protect it from the elements because the better care you take of it the longer the life span is. You there there’s no harm in picking the  cushions up standing them vertically and then putting a cover over the furniture it’s going to both help the actual fabric last longer, it’s not going to allow water to build up and sit because hey guess what, things will get mildew on them, no matter what, you’re going to have to clean them and wash them 
BETH: Of course even sunbrella would if it’s wet enough
CHAD:Yeah, if it’s wet enough and definitely in Louisiana 
BETH: It is wet
CHAD:It is wet enough, but it is – the one nice thing is you simple with the right soap a little brush and some water, you can clean them pretty quickly so it is a nice factor. So then the other thing that you want to take into consideration is when you’re talking about outdoor furniture you then, like we had spoken about like a chase lounge that isn’t an all-weather rattan, we’ve spoken about the fermob product. So when you’re looking at like patio type loungers for the pool area you want to make sure that they’re aluminium because aluminium you know like I mentioned doesn’t get hot and also today, a lot of pools are salt based 
BETH: Yes, and that’s a deadly combination if you’re not using aluminium
CHAD:It is, a salt based pool and especially you know the real problem is, we have this problem in our backyard our polaris is wild he has that little whipping tail no matter like if we turn it down or change it or reduce it to make it shorter that tail just it spits like crazy and it sprays the salt water all over things and so by having the right type of aluminium furniture you’ll end up with longer lasting furniture. If you put mental pieces and you have salt water pool you’ll definitely have rusting mental furniture. And a lot of times that rust will corrode unto your decks whether you have a travertine deck or flagstone deck or even a concrete deck or pavers and it’ll leave the spots. You know one of the types of outdoor chairs that I really like is the low arm chair, that luxembourg low arm chair by fermob because in our particular circumstance we don’t have a lot of space in our backyard, I think what our backyard is like 33” x 60”? 
BETH: Yes it’s very small
CHAD:And there’s a pool and a pool house and stairs that come off the house 
BETH: That’s right
CHAD:And so we just have what, is it like 3ft on one side, 3ft on one side and we might have 6ft on the other side. So we don’t have a place around the pool to put a lounger but that low arm chair is at an angle that sits back and it’s super comfortable for anyone, especially guys – guys love that chair 
BETH: Yeah, I always think it’s really funny when they’re at the store and I say “Oh go try that one” and they sort of look at it like hmmm. They minute they get down on it they’re like “oh wow, it’s comfortable” 
CHAD:Exactly, that first experience I had when we were in Luxembourg Garden in Paris, you know and I remember and that’s kind of when we feel in love with that particular brand is when we found it and then from then on it was that’s the only thing that I can think of, it’s one of the nice things that comes in twenty four colours, which is dynamite 
BETH: A colour for every person
CHAD:A colour for every person or personality, you might have five personalities 
BETH: Yeah I saw an arrangement that’s going out tomorrow and it was quite colourful; white table with four different colour chairs in luxembourg 
CHAD:Yes it was, it was and it even has that new colour, the lagoon colour which was just dynamite 
BETH: It matches my shutters
CHAD:It matches your shutters, that’s right. So let’s just run through some simple things. You know front porches are great for swings, benches, and like you had mentioned the all-weather rattan chairs with nice cushions. Back patios are great for nice tables you know you can do the big long nice stone tables; you can actually even bring some of your indoor furniture out for little events. Make sure you think about your overhead lighting. You know talked about the chandeliers using the candles in them. Remember husbands you need a little DIY project … 
BETH: Your tablescapes
CHAD:Pull a little rope and some pulleys and pull it up and down, personally me I would do everything not to have a little DIY project. On a side note; how many inches above the table does the chandelier need to be? Well it really doesn’t matter what the right measurement is supposed to be. But Beth I think, what you said it’s like 30” or 31” 
BETH: Maybe 30”
CHAD:Yeah it depends, but if you have a tall family all your sons and husband will hit their heads on that chandelier. One of the other things we did talk about was; she’s over here parading around because she was right 
BETH: I just looked it up online 30” to 34” woot! Woot!
CHAD:Yeah, exactly, exactly. We need to move the one above our head here four inches so that would help us but you know we also talked about the actual other elements that you can incorporate into a yard which would be landscape lighting, we touched on the LED lights and there’s a bunch of new LED lights out on the market that are really great, as well as incorporating tablescapes of candles and I know that Compania now makes those outdoor candle holders with the glass cylinders, which are really nice. We also talked about doing pots with plants and softening the space so you’re not just dumping some furniture outside and it just looks like you dumped furniture outside you actually try to make it look like a home outside. So maybe building your interior concept 
BETH: And noise reduction too
CHAD:Yeah it does help and then carrying that same thing outside. So when your guests go from the front of your house, you know as they enter your house, they come in and then they go out back that there’s one consistent look and I think those are great ways to turn a whole living space, you where is all… 
BETH: Inside out
CHAD:Inside and out 
BETH: Today’s podcast is brought to you by http://www.audible.com/. Get a free audio book download and 30-day free trial at http://www.audibletrial.com/style. Over 150,000 titles to choose from for your iPhone, android, kindle or mp3 player. Again that’s http://www.audibletrial.com/style 
CHAD:Alirght, so now after all this Beth, I think everybody’s ready to go outside  
BETH: And enjoy that outdoor living space you’ve just created
CHAD:That’s it, that’s it. Hey thanks again for joining us today. I’m Chad Harris 
BETH: And I’m Beth Harris
CHAD:And we’re from “Lasting Style Meets Everyday Life” you can find us seven days a week at 2918 Metairie Road. Always visit us http://www.athomewithbethandchad.com/ our blog, as well as you can shop with us online at https://www.thegardengates.com  Thanks again, we’ll see you soon! 
BETH:Bye!

Episode 10 -Lost Podcast

CHAD:Lasting Style Meets Everyday life – Episode 10 
BETH: Join us on the journey of discovery to our ‘Lasting Style Meets Everyday Life’ podcast. 
CHAD:Join our experts, Beth and Chad Harris from the https://www.thegardengates.com/ 
BETH:As they help you find the perfect home and garden decor for your perfect lifestyle 
CHAD:Hi this is Chad Harris! 
BETH:And this is Beth Harris! 
CHAD:And we’re Beth and Chad from “Lasting Style Meets Everyday Life”. Alright Beth, it’s been a rough weekend huh? 
BETH: Yes
CHAD:It’s been a rough weekend. Last time we talked about “The Refresh” and we talked about a refresh for your indoors. 
BETH: That’s right, so now we’re going to talk about outside
CHAD:That’s right, so what’s interesting is we have a program called “Gardening Made Simple” and it was funny what brings me to this is I was going through some things the other day and I found the certificate from the library of congress when I submitted that book “Gardening Made Simple” and I was like holy cow man I can’t even believe… 
BETH: How long has it been?
CHAD:It’s been a long time. That was – I think it’s been eight years now; either or nine years, you know? So I pulled it out, and then I couldn’t find the original document, then I found the original document. I actually typed the document, so then I actually started working on a downloadable digital book for people to be able to use this all over the country and so I thought what a better way to kind of engage with it since we talked about the inside is that we would talk about the outside, what you think? 
BETH: I think that’s a great idea
CHADAlright. So Gardening Made Simple, the whole idea behind it. I don’t know if you remembered when I did it. The whole idea behind it was – there’s tons of people out there that actually love to garden, right? 
BETH: Yes but they really don’t know what they’re doing
CHAD:Right, so if they don’t know what they’re doing, what is it? It’s just muscle and direction. You got to be strong, you got to be able to dig some holes 
BETH: And a little knowledge; sun, shade
CHAD:There you go, a little bit of knowledge 
BETH: Fertilizer
CHAD:Right, greens side up. Like when you’re laying grass it’s always green side up, right? 
BETH: And don’t bury the plant up to its neck
CHAD:That’s it, that’s it. So some simple knowledge and that’s how I came up with this whole “Gardening Made Simple” idea. So basically I don’t know if you remembered but it was designed where it gave somebody some information and what they had to do was – it was like a little research project. So they would go home and they would take pictures. They take pictures in the area they wanted to work in, then they would turn around and also they would take some measurements and in the book there actually was like a diagram form and they would lay it out and they would bring all this information in by answering some questions and we would actually be able to design their garden, show them the plants and then send them home to do the work 
BETH: That’s right
CHAD:You know, so it turned out that over the course of the years, we probably had – when it first started, there was probably that year maybe a hundred people did it. Then the next year it become more popular and then more popular an then it kind of fizzled out with just attrition and stopped working on it as much 
BETH: Yeah, we started focusing on other things
CHAD:Yeah we started focusing on other things but what really brought it back out was when I was going through these files. You know if found the first mail order catalogue we ever sent out, I found that and so as I found these things I forgot how much fun it was for me to work on and how much fun I had with consumers actually doing the work 
BETH: Yes
CHAD:So let’s go through exactly what a consumers would do 
BETH: I’ll be the consumer
CHAD:There you go, you can be the dumb blonde. 
BETH: Oh thanks, yeah. Hi I have no clue I’m coming in I have some spaces I want to work with in my yard. Can you help me? 
CHAD:That’s it, that’s it 
BETH: How did I do?
CHAD:So basically there’s some simple questions that you have to run through your head. You know one of the most important things is, don’t ever look at your neighbour’s yard and say I want what they have. Cause if your neighbour’s across the street then your neighbour might get morning sun, and you might get afternoon sun. So if your neighbour gets morning sun and you get afternoon sun and you wanted Patience and you planted Patience they get melted in the heat. 
BETH: I would just have to put Patience in my backyard then.
CHAD:See? You’ve just figured it out. So it’s really – where’s the area you’re going to be working in, then you want to know where’s the sun at 2 o’clock in the afternoon. So if they sun is the brightest in the area that you’re working in nine out of ten times its full sun an then the other thing you have to consider is that if it’s during spring or fall you’re looking at this because the leaves are falling out of the trees and there is full sun verses spring and there is shade, you kind of want to plan accordingly. So like with seasonal flowers if you have full sun you obviously want to plant things that can tolerate – and especially in New Orleans our summers – even though today I did say it was cold outside. Our summers are brutally warm, you know. But I even remember when I lived in Michigan that the summers were warm and so there are plants that obviously need to combat the heat as well as the sunlight. So you really want to first find out when you’re working sun or shade, right? 
BETH: Right
CHAD:Sun or Shade. The next one is that you want to know about is that – do you need to do structure planning, so are you planting larger plant materials such as trees or like larger pruned hedges as an example like, or are you going to plant like in our front yard how we have those four massive Natchez Crepe Myrtles and then we have understory planting below it. So you’d already have existing trees in place and you just want to fill in. So that’s really what the pictures look for and also the reason why we want you to take pictures and bring them in or pictures anywhere you go in the country. If you bring a picture on the phones today it’s so easy 
BETH: So easy
CHAD:You know, it used to be like when we started this, they’d have to take the picture and print the picture out, and some of them would bring their – I remember like some of the first digital cameras they would come in with… 
BETH: And scrolling through the pictures and be like “Can we get that?”
CHAD:Yeah, “how do we print that off?” I remember the Sony Mavica cameras that had the… 
BETH: Ok, ok you’re getting sideways here, let’s get back to it
CHAD:Alight, back to it, back to it. Then you know once we could kind of see a picture any designer you know inside or out, any designer the minute they see a picture as you start talking to them they can get a better understanding of what you want to see happen, you know? So then there are things like, ok so now we know its sun or shade, now we know if it’s larger plant material or smaller plant material, then the most important next thing is colour. What colours do you like? You know, it’s known that both you and I love white. I also like lavender and I also like blue. 
BETH: Yeah I like pastel colours, I don’t really like bright or harsh colours
CHAD:Hey did you notice that Amos planted what was planted in those hayracks and there’s a red vinca in the middle of it 
BETH: Yes, don’t get me started
CHAD:I noticed that the other day 
BETH: It’s on each one dead in the centre.
CHAD:Oh he put one in each, that’s the best, I love it! 
BETH: I know he does it on purpose to tick me off 
CHAD:You know he does it on purpose, just to get you mad. And so once you kind of pick your colours then you have to start deciding the kind of plant material you want. You know, do you want evergreen material in the flowers, you know so you want something like – really big here in New Orleans obviously are the sasanqua because they bloom during November the Camellia japonica bloom during Christmas, lots of people love the encore azaleas, you just mentioned today that your encore’s out front your autumn angels are just putting some flowers on 
BETH: Yes I was excite to see that
CHAD:Which is unusual in July for an azaleas that’s why the encores are so special 
BETH: Yes
CHAD:That’s right, it is July, right? 
BETH: Not yet
CHAD:Well, July is like next week 
BETH: Yes
CHAD:Right, right so it’s June, it’s June, July’s next week 
BETH: Hydrangeas, love, love, love
CHAD:Hydrangeas, I know you love those as well. Well you know they have the blushing bride which is white 
BETH: Beautiful
CHAD:And then you know I’ve shown you pictures of the incredible Hydrangeas with the flowers the size of a basketball 
BETH: I love that
CHAD:You know, so all those things are really important and so when you can communicate those things to the designer that you’re working with, you can end up with a spectacular yard. 
BETH: And you can do it yourself which is so rewarding
CHAD:And that’s probably the most important part. So once you kind of help your designer select the plant material that you’re going to do best with. How we have run the program is then we would send you home to get the area ready. So let’s talk about getting the area ready to work in. So what do you think that entails? 
BETH: A lot of work that I don’t know anything about
CHAD:Right, well that’s a good point 
BETH: I would imagine grading your soil and doing things like that; and getting rid of roots and stuff                              
CHAD:Good stuff like that, so things like pulling weed, preparing the soil. In New Orleans market we have a sand base soil, so they call a sandy loom but sometimes sand base soil so you need to add things organic, things to help the plant grow, sand helps drain off the water, whereas areas that has heavy clay they actually have to add things to help drain water. We already have the heavy sand here so you want to add things like decomposed plant bark, a lot of times you can buy a pre-made garden. One of the garden soil companies that would deliver it and depending on how much spoil you need you have to go that route. Because you have to buy four yards of soil at a time for it to be affordable to be delivered. So you’re going to want to go in and prepare the soil. So preparing the soil is very – removing roots like you said, pulling weeds, there’s grass, things of that nature. You’re going to want to take and turn the existing soil over. That’s where the work comes in.  And the reason why you want to turn the existing oil over and you want to incorporate the old soil with the new soil is that you don’t want your new plants to be in this awesome great soil at the top 
BETH: And then the roots hit the bottom 
CHAD:That muckidy yuckidy soil that’s like “yeah, I’m not going in there, I don’t care I’m not putting my feet in there”. And so when you mix the existing soil together you provide a better growing environment for the plants. Makes sense? 
BETH: Makes sense
CHAD:Makes sense. One of the other things that’s important is that you’re going to want to go ahead and add a nutrient to the soil and the reason why you want to add a nutrient to the soil when you’re turning the soil over and adding the new soil, incorporating it over and grading and getting it pretty is because then you’ll be mixing it throughout the soil. And so you’re going to want to use – a lot of people are very familiar with Osmocote, a lot of people are very familiar with the Ferdiline products. Both of those products provide adequate nutrients, remember those are the three numbers that we talked about 
BETH: High number in the middle
CHAD:That’s right, high number in the middle makes it flower, the number in the front makes it green, the number in the end makes it root. So you going to want kind of general fertilizer for garden beds 
BETH: And if you have a weed issue, do you put down a birth control like before the plants go in or after? 
CHAD:Ahhh, that’s a good, good question. So what Beth is talking about and I’m really excited that she said this and she throws her hands in the air for like victory. So what Beth is talking about is actually taking and using a pre-emergent herbicide so there’s several of them out on the market you have Eptam and you have Surflan and you have Preham what they do is when they – incorporated into the spoil and the upper two inches of the spoil they create a barrier and they don’t allow the weed seedlings or the seeds themselves to germinate, they might germinate below that soil level but they’re not actually going to come through the soil. So it’s going to reduce probably 75 – 85% of all your weeds by doing this. Now you make a really good point, you’re not going to want to install that or apply that product until you’ve planted all of your woody plants and what I mean by woody plants  are like shrubby material, and ground covers and things like that. The reason why is because you want to – it’s almost like, you know how when the termite guy comes and sprays around the perimeter of the building and he’s like if you have somebody come and dig you have to come out and retreat the barrier, it’ the same thing. You want to have everything planted, regraded, and you want to incorporate that in the upper, two inches of the soil, so what you do is distribute it with a granular, you apply it based on the label recommendations which if I’m not mistaken it’d about a pound per ten square feet because I think a four pound bag does 40-50 square feet like with most of them but just follow the label instructions they’ll tell you exactly what to do. You just read it, lengths x width and then apply it accordingly. 
BETH: I want to hand that out to all my neighbours, two in particular that I can visualise right now who all have Asian jasmine and they have just weeds popping up through it and I look at it and they’ve pretty much surround it between the sidewalk and the street with jasmine all around their property and it’s just littered with weeds and it just makes me nuts 
CHAD:So it’s interesting that we were talking about a pre-emergent herbicide so as an example that problem they have a grassy weed that’s growing in the jasmine you have to use a selective post-emergent herbicide so there’s products out there on the market that you can spray on those weeks that won’t kill the jasmine and you’ll get rid of the problem and then you will apply the pre-emergent herbicide to stop the future weeds from growing. So that’s like a double dipper they have to work on. 
BETH: Yeah, they’ve got two issues there
CHAD:I keep saying I’m going to do it for them because it makes me crazy 
BETH: It’s making me insane
CHAD:It is, it is. So we’re going to hop back to now that we grading all of our soil, and we’ve planted all our larger plants like our 1 gallon, 3 gallon, 5 gallon, 7 gallon type plants. So let’s say we have boxwood, and let’s say we have some hydrangea, and let’s say we have some encore azaleas and we’ve planted all of those. So that’s when you’re going to want to go in and put your pre-emergent herbicide down as we call it birth control for weeds, you know? So, you get all that installed and you’re good to go. Then you lightly rake it so it kind of breaks into upper crust of the soil you’ll put your mulch down and then when you water in that’s actually what’s going to release the chemical under the soil. It last for about four months, four to five months, you do have to do some retreatment but it’s a great – I mean that’s so much easier than pulling weed 
BETH: I mean just – yeah, because it can just get out of control
CHAD:It can get out of control. What you’re going to want to be careful of is when you plant flowers, you have to follow the label instructions, because there’s a few of the flowers that get – let’s just say pissed when you 
BETH: Oh, I didn’t know that
CHAD:Yeah, yeah, there are a few of them. That’s why you always have to read the labels because the labels… 
BETH: You know what a few of them are?
CHAD:Off the top of my head I know that Begonias are temperamental to a few of them, not all of them 
BETH: Ok                        
CHAD:But historically you can cautiously apply it. You know again this goes back to we’ve talked about fertilizers with orchids before, more is not better in these situations. More is not better, it’s better to lightly apply then come back reapply a few months down the road. So now that you’ve gotten your bed ready for planting we usually have you come back to the garden centre at that point and pick up your plants. We kind of go and lay them out, look at your drawing, because you know there’s a drawing at this point, we’ve laid them out in fantasy world and show you how all the plants are placed. So one of the biggest things that people kind of sometimes get confused by is the size of the plant and how far to space them. You know what I’m talking about, right? 
BETH: You kind of an offender on that case, you really pack our garden and I’m like thinking “you could have separated those a little bit more”. You like that impact 
CHAD:That’s because when I planted like the 4,000 boxwoods in our front yard. I double planted them and then planted them pot to pot, so yes I am beyond an offender; but what I’m making reference to is that when someone is typically using this program is they’re not sure how close to plant the plants together 
BETH: Yeah
CHAD:And the label often tells us the size of the plants, thing we have to really careful with labels on plants is that they’re made – that label also goes all over the country 
BETH: Right and they grow differently in each area
CHAD:In different environments, more fertilizer, less fertilizer, more water, less water. So a good rule of thumb like with Azaleas is that if it’s in a 3 gallon pot, you measure from the centre of the plant to the centre of the next plant and you plant them three feet apart. So if the plant is a foot in diameter you’re going to have about two feet between each plant. You know foliage to foliage and that’s going to give that plant enough room to grow. Now this is a rule of thumb, you know like I’m saying this is good guidance, you know. Some plants get bigger, some plants get smaller, some plants you need closer spacing, you know. And another great thing is that I know that you’ve learnt this over the years. Always plant, unless you’re planting little soldiers in a perfect little row. Always plant in odd numbers 3’s, 5’s, 7’s, 9’s and make like little triangles. It just looks nicer     
BETH: Yes
CHAD:It always looks nicer. So now you’ve gotten your plants home, you’ve gotten your shovel out, you’ve planted all your little plants and now it’s time to do what? 
BETH: It’s time to water
CHAD:That’s right, it’s time to water. Now that you’ve planted your plants you want to thoroughly water in all your plant material. Now that doesn’t mean drown them  
BETH: No
CHAD:No, it does not mean drown them but it means is really water them in water around where the plant – you know where you dug the hole, water that where the new roots and the soil kind of come together. Try to get the air pockets out because if you can get the air pockets out what you’re going to have is a plant that really you’re going to be able to saturate the soil little bit better and the roots wont drown as much because the soil won’t be completely around the root ball, makes sense? 
BETH: Totally sense
CHAD:Alight. So, let’s talk about water for a second because now you’ve gone through this whole – now you got it, now you got the design, you have the colour you want, it’s perfect, now you’re watering, and we applied, or we had you apply the mulch, right? 
BETH: Right
CHAD:We had you – we personally had you apply the crushed, cut, clean pine straw just because, personally I like the way it looks, I know everyone has a personal preference, I know that we also use pea gravel personally 
BETH: Love that
CHAD:Yeah the pea gravel looks really really nice. The cut clean pine straw actually biodegrades and releases acid into the spoil which we need here in the world. As you can see George is there barking in the background. Alright, we use the pine straw like I was saying because as it breaks down it helps add acid to the soil our Camellias our Gardenia our Hydrangea because of the soil that we have, we really need that. All across the country people use all different types of mulches, you also like the pea gravel which has a very European look to it and I have to agree I really like that as well. So here’s the next trick ongoing, how often do you think you have to water your new garden? 
BETH: Well it depends on rain, it depends on irrigation
CHAD:You don’t have irrigation 
BETH: I do, I just turned it off
CHAD:No, no, no, no. In this imaginary world you don’t have irrigation 
BETH: Wow, then I’m going to yield to your expertise
CHAD:Oh, you don’t even want to try, do you? 
BETH:No 
CHAD:So during your first three weeks of your new garden, like you said monitor the rain but you’re going to really want to pay close attention, definitely the first week every day, definitely the first week 
BETH:Unless it’s like a shady spot, maybe 
CHAD:Unless it’s a shady spot, you’re right. The second week you can probably move to four days a week. You know unless it’s obviously spring and summer conditions, these aren’t fall and winter conditions, you know? And then by the third week your plant, you should actually start seeing little bit of new growth, it should be happy and standing tall and you can probably move to a few days a week, like you know every other day but you really have to keep your eyes on it 
BETH:That’s right 
CHAD:You know and if you have seasonal colouring and things like that that’s the part that you’re really going to have to monitor cause those my actually – that type of plant material might actually need more water than others. Alight, so now you learned about sun and shade, you learned about soil, you learned about pre-emergent and post-emergent herbicides, you didn’t even know all that. You learned a little bit about fertilizer again, we talked about water, we talked about picking out plants, we talked about preparing the soil, what do you think you have left to do? You got to have something to do 
BETH:Make a mojito, sit down and enjoy it 
CHAD:Yeah there you go, Make a mojito, sit down and enjoy it. That’s it, that’s it. So this is our little episode on the “Garden Refresh”. We hope you learned something. Think you learned something today Beth? 
BETH:Ahhh…yeah! 
CHAD:Yeah, you were kind of hesitant 
BETH:Hire the professionals 
CHAD:Hire the professionals, hire the professionals. So I’m Chad Harris 
BETH:And I’m Beth Harris 
CHAD:And we’re with “Lasting Style Meets Everyday Life” you can always visit us at http://www.athomewithbethandchad.com/ that’s our blog, shop with us online at https://www.thegardengates.com  or if you’re in New Orleans come visit us at 2918 Metairie Road, See you soon!

Gift Giving Podcast – Lost Archives

Title: Lasting Style Meets Every day life

Episode 15

Male Voice: Chad Harris (CH) Female Voice: Beth Harris (BH)

CHAD:         Lasting Style Meets Every day life – Episode 15

BETH: Join us on the journey of discovery to our ‘Lasting Style Meets Everyday Life’ podcast.

CHAD:         Join our experts, Beth and Chad Harris from the https://www.thegardengates.com/

BETH: As they help you find the perfect home and garden decor for your perfect lifestyle

BETH:   Today’s podcast is brought to you by http://www.audible.com/. Get a free audio book download and 30-day free trial at http://www.audibletrial.com/style. Over 150,000 titles to choose from for your iPhone, android, kindle or mp3 player. That’s http://www.audibletrial.com/style

CHAD:  Hi, this is “Lasting Style Meets Every day Life” and I am Chad Harris. Beth is still out this week, she’s out shopping for the store and visiting her little nephew and I think she comes home tomorrow if I’m not mistaken. But today I’ve been inspired, I’ve been inspired by a commercial I heard and that’s very off because I never listen to commercials on radio. Mostly something I’ve recorded or programmed in and it was a commercial about Christmas in July. So it got me thinking, how could I influence every guy out there to be the most hated boyfriend or husband on the planet?

CHAD: For you the listeners of “Lasting Style Meets Every Day Life” podcast Audible is offering a free audio download with a 30-day free trial to give you the opportunity to check out their free service. Beth and I just finished Diverging by Veronica Roth. To download your free audio book today, go to http://www.audibletrial.com/style. Again that’s http://www.audibletrial.com/style for your free audio book today.

CHAD:  This year was going to be the year that you’re the most awesome gift giver on the planet. Yes, that’s right, I’m going to help you become the best gift giver there is. So let’s figure out really what the problem is, let’s explore where our problem is. You know we (and I mean guys) we have a chromosome problem; we are missing the key ingredient in making well thought out rational gift buying decisions. That’s right, come on let’s be honest, we are just one step above a caveman, we’re almost – our diets are like cavemen it’s almost like “give me steak, hear me raw”. Ok, so now that we clearly understand where the problem is let’s look at an experience that I had and I can help you fix your problems and I promise you this actually happens so for years Beth my wife carried around a picture of a Cathy Waterman ring, we were dead broke but she carried this picture and said one day one day one day. So that one day came along, I didn’t know who Cathy Waterman was, I had an idea where it was sold, so I got on the phone and I called the little boutique and I went there and I showed up and of course I didn’t have the picture. Number one rule if you’re buying someone a gift and they carried around a picture, carry it with you. I promise you it will help you in great return. Then as I’m in there, I look at twenty different rings, I picked one and I’m pretty excited, I think it’s what I remember, of course it isn’t the ring but it’s what I remember and the very nice sales person says to me. Would you like a pair of earrings to go with that? And I was like sure, and I’m thinking to myself the ring’s $2,500 the earrings can’t be more than $2,500. So I was like yeah I’ll take the earrings, I’ll take them; I’ll take them no matter what. So we go to the checkout and then she wraps everything, she puts it in a wonderful little box and she hand ties the ribbon at the top, she puts a little sticker on it, she says “here’s a little card you can full out. I’m so excited”, she rings it up and says “ok that will be $10,000” and all I hear is $10,000. I literally crumbled inside and I take a deep breath as sweat is dripping from my brow at that point and  I’m panicking as I handed my credit card over and I casually said “give it a swipe and let’s see what happens” and so obviously I came home with the gifts, I’m so excited it’s like better than Christmas and I believe – I can’t even remember why I bought it if it’s Beth birthday or after her birthday or before her birthday, any day, maybe it’s just one of those days. I don’t remember any of that, I only remember the $10,000 and the most important thing is I bought the wrong ring.  

So as I gave the gift, I watched Beth open her eyes in amazement, that she looks not at the ring but the earring and she says “these are so beautiful” and I’m thinking to myself “please take them back, please take them back” and she looks at the ring and she’s like “Oh this isn’t like the one in the picture”. So low and behold I come home the next day and she shows me the ring and has the earrings on, I’m looking at the ring and I’m like “that’s not the one I picked out?” She’s like “Oh I brought that one back and I bought another one” and so Lesson #1: When you go to buy something for someone that carries around a picture in their wallet for years, take the picture with you.  That is one of the best pieces of advice I can give you; because on that day it didn’t just cost me a pair of earrings, it also cost me an additional upgrade on the ring because I was unable to bring the right one home.

Enough about how stupid I am and let’s get into the nuts and bolts on how not to have a gift disaster and so this is what I did for you, it’s really simple so the women in the audience that are listening turn the volume up and grab your boyfriend or husband and unplug the cotton from their ears and guys if you’re listening, like put your phone down and really start paying attention. I decide that – I was so inspired by this Christmas in July commercial that I heard because I thought it was kind of funny because I was thinking along those lines like “Oh it’s July” it’s almost Christmas time that I went on Twitter and Facebook today and I put out some posts and I asked some people, ladies in particular “What was the worst gift you’ve ever got?” and I got some answers back. I was pretty shocked at that I actually got.

Let’s start with our worst gifts. One of the girls in the office Elise, and yes I hope your husband’s listening told me her husband gave her – and I’m pretty sure they won’t married at the time but they could have been; gave her, I can’t even say it, hotel shampoo and lotion in her stocking. Hotel shampoo and lotion, like he wasn’t going to notice it said Hilton on the bottles. Did he think he tricked her? So that’s a pretty good one. That is definitely a don’t. Then I had an anonymous person send me a private message and said her spouse gave her weight shaker or shaker weight and then a gym membership. So I would highly recommend that would be something you don’t want to give your spouse; a shaker weight and a gym membership especially for Christmas. I mean she might want it, but don’t do it until you’re exactly told what to do, what to buy. Like you’re supposed to go to the yoga store and buy the one month supply of infinite yoga classes, definitely do that but don’t go to Planet All Fitness and pick yourseld up a membership for her thinking that’s exactly what she wanted.

So Ashley one of the girls in the office said someone told her that “hey your gift card’s in your email, make sure to check it” which is a pretty interesting one and then also, singing stuffed animal. So I would say singing stuffed animals definitely aren’t a great gift. Ok but let’s talk about the icing on the cake. I mean I should save this for last but when I read it, I couldn’t even believe it. So Amy writes in that she received a 1980’s orange sweater from the guy’s dead grandmother. Now that is probably the worst gift imaginable. Now Sheryl shimmed in and said that her husband gave her a car stereo upgrade and I can promise you it definitely wasn’t something she was looking for. Now Susan shimmed in and said that her better half gave her a power booster for her convertible mustang, and then shimmed in and said “I guess it was so I can get the ice cream home faster”. Interesting enough Karen shimmed in and said she got a red sweater, ok fair enough, the third time in a row, three years of red sweaters. Jill might almost beat Amy out. Jill she got some spanks and let me tell you what Jill also had to say “you know what he didn’t get for a long time” and then there was Donna, Donna got two things, she got a double gift, because Donna got a vacuum and then Donna got herself a maid just to teach her husband a little lesson. So of the worst gifts that are out there, I would definitely recommend that you don’t buy things like spanks, weight shakers, vacuums, oh maybe gym memberships, or anything along those lines and definitely you’re not going to trick your girlfriend or wife by giving them bottled shampoo and lotion from the hotel you stayed at last. I promise you that one won’t go down. So here are some simple ways that you can accomplish the perfect gift.

BETH:   Join the conversation, share ideas and transform your home inside and out at http://www.facebook.com/thegardengates

CHAD: So here’s a list of Do’s. Your Do’s are to listen; listen to what your GFW (that would be your girlfriend or wife) is talking about. It’s really simple so you have from now July to December 24th you can wait to the last minute; all you have to do is pay attention. So take some mental notes, what magazines they look at, one of the things I’ve noticed is Beth loves this magazine called “Hello Magazine” she has a hard time finding it, she actually likes the actual physical magazine so I got her a subscription for a year, it kind of back fired on me because they don’t deliver it when they’re supposed to and I hear about it every week but she loves when it comes because she loves to flip through that magazine, so that’s a really great thing. I know, I paid attention I saw that she liked it and then went ahead and got something I knew she would enjoy for every week when it comes. So then pay attention to those social posts, Instagram pictures, when they show you “Oh look how cute those toe nails are” and whatever if it’s a Butter of London toe nail polish, look you can figure it out, look at the pictures, bring the pictures with you and figure it out.

            So then suggestive conversations, when you’re out and about say “hey that’s pretty cool, what do you think about it?” and when they give you that look of pure disgust then you know that definitely isn’t the right thing to get them especially if it’s another red sweater.

And here’s a list of Don’ts: Don’t buy anything as seen on TV if the brand is as seen as on TV I promise you they don’t want it, not even a snuggly I promise you. No re-gifting when your mom gives you the salad bowl that you don’t ever use, you can’t give that to your wife or girlfriend and then no last minute runs to Walgreens, I know that it’s enticing they have the perfume for $14.99 sitting on the shelf when you check-out but I promise you that’s not the perfume she is looking for and then hand-me-downs from grandmas closet and definitely 100%, never consider an ex-girlfriend or ex-wife’s gift. I mean don’t do it, you’re just asking yourself for disaster.

So here are some perfect gift ideas for you. Alight, so #1:  You can never go wrong with the spa day. You know the one she likes to go to. I’ll be honest with you, I have two or three that I love to spend Beth to. One for a longer day; one for you know if she’s just going to get a massage, and I’ve also taken the time to make sure to understand the things that she likes so pedicure, manicure, facial, massage, what kind of massage, stone massage, a deep tissue massage, all those things and you can do all that by asking questions and while you may not like any of those things, I can assure you she does. So here are something you can do for a day spa which is really interesting and I’ve done it before, if you schedule a manicure and pedicure along with a massage and a facial, what you do is you come in for the manicure or pedicure and you let the spa know you would like to have it with her at the same time. I’ve done the pedicures with Beth before as well, plus the manicures where it’s not really my thing but I know deep down inside she loved it. Now I would say the slippery feet part afterwards didn’t go really well because I looked silly wearing those little itty bitty flip flops considering I wear a size 15. My feet were sticking out, my heels were hanging off but I did it for her and not necessarily for me, so that is a great thing you can do and she’s going to love it.

The next thing you can do, is you can find classes and I know that sounds funny but you can find cooking classes, wine tasting glasses even like yoga studio classes that you can go to that’s more one and one and again none of these things might be your thing but that type of interaction with your spouse, especially if she knows you don’t like it would get you years, well maybe days or minutes of brownie points down the road. And that’s what it really is, it’s all about the brownie points for when you really do blow it, that you can skirt by with well you know “remember what I did?”.

And then another great one is the overnight get away you know be a tourist in your own town with an overnight get away and so find a little great hotel, might be one she’s familiar with or not familiar make sure you check it out a little bit. You don’t want to go someplace that has a big heart bed and a mirror ceiling, that won’t go over really well for you. I mean it might be or might not, it can grossly turn into what are you thinking and that won’t work for you really well and also do a little bit of research and find a great restaurant that you haven’t been too before that she read about or told you about or just opening or if you’re in New Orleans you can pick any one of John Buchan’s restaurants and you’ll find something that’ll be great maybe one that she hasn’t gone to before or you can also grab a few things and go have a simple dinner, I promise you that would go over really well and then the next day, the next morning just go have simple coffee and conversation. You know talk about things you don’t normally talk about. You know I’m a the biggest offender of this because I am a workaholic so all I do is work, all I talk about is work and I as a spouse have to do a better job I should say as in not bringing work into every single conversation. So those things are really important especially if your spouse knows what your habits are on a regular basis that would go over extremely well. You would do really well by jumping out of your comfort zone will win you a life time of opportunities, you know what I’m talking about, a life time of opportunities. So when all else fails and you have no idea what to do, you can always make that last minute run to your favourite jewellery store. Now here comes the problem, you’re going to do this on December 24th at 1:15 in the afternoon and your pickings are going to be whatever is in the case.

So if you just follow my simple little steps on listening, suggestive conversation, your don’ts, like don’t do anything seen on TV. No re-gifting, come up with some great ideas that are unique to you and your spouse that you know she will enjoy. And as an example, if your wife loves to fish then make that an outing but if your wife loves to have T, high T as they say then make that your outing, it really has to do with paying attention, listening so that you have the perfect Christmas gift this year and that’s what this is about having the perfect christmas gift. It takes a little bit of thought, its July you have several months to plan this. I hope this has been educational for you and if hasn’t you’re a lost cause.

This is Chad Harris with “Lasting Style Meets Everyday Life” you can always check me  out at http://www.athomewithbethandchad.com/, there’s a blog I post on a regular basis. Our YouTube Channel “thegardengates”

OUTRO: That’s all for episode of our “Lasting Style Meets Every Day Life” podcast. Visit http://www.athomewithbethandchad.com/ for more tips on home and garden ideas or find everything you need for the home at https://www.thegardengates.com.Be sure to join Beth and Chad next time on “Lasting Style Meets Every Day Life” podcast.

Outdoor Furniture for the Home

Episode 11: Outdoor Furniture for the Home

Male Voice: Chad Harris (CH) Female Voice: Beth Harris (BH)

CHAD:Lasting Style Meets Everyday life – Episode 11
BETH: Join us on the journey of discovery to our ‘Lasting Style Meets Everyday Life’ podcast.
CHAD:Join our experts, Beth and Chad Harris from the https://www.thegardengates.com/
BETH:As they help you find the perfect home and garden decor for your perfect lifestyle
CHAD:It’s the summer; it’s a great time to be by the pool and what better to do it in? Fermob Bistro Furniture, check it out online at https://www.thegardengates.com/, 24 great colours straight from France. Hi! This is Chad Harris
BETH:And this is Beth Harris
CHAD:And we’re with Lasting Style Meets Everyday Life. Hey, thanks for joining us today and today what are we talking about Beth?
BETH: Today we’re going to move outside and build our outdoor living space
CHAD:That sounds like a good idea outdoor living space, eating, hanging out, chilling by the pool
BETH: All of the above
CHAD:All of the above. Alright, so let’s run through – why don’t we start at the front of the house, what do you think?
BETH: That’s easy, well we’re in the South so when I think of front porches I think about having some sort of maybe indoor or outdoor rugs sorry that you can put on your porch and all-weather rattan set of chairs perhaps with really nice cushions that’s comfortable just to sit back and maybe read a book or chat with a neighbour
CHAD:You know that’s really a great idea. What about also adding a nice – some people might now want that, they might want a nice bench and put a nice cushion on it as well, or maybe a set of chairs or a chair, so those are both great opportunities, on a front porch, something that’s real simple, easily that kind of blends in with the space, don’t you think?
BETH: Yes and don’t leave out the swing! Because people love swings too
CHADThat’s right, that’s right. The swing you could make a nice little – your own little custom pillow collaging
BETH: I was just going to say now-a-days it’s not just a swing, they make bed swings
CHAD:I know, I know definitely I know on our front porch we can never do that but definitely I’ve seen some of those bed swings but I would need an A/C bed swing
BETH: You probably would
CHAD:Yes probably. Alight so now you – then you walk inside your house and as you walk through your house and you go let’s say to your back yard or your back porch or your back deck; you want to make sure that you have – you time one into the other, don’t you think?
BETH: Correct. I think you need to know that you can open those doors and go straight out to a place to invite guests to have dinner or just to sit, if you have a swimming pool, maybe by the pool or just around a really lovely garden
CHAD:You know that makes a lot of sense, you know you talk about having dinner outside, like the Al fresco dining where you almost move your whole dining room outside and it’s great, one of the things you want to make sure is that you have really comfortable chairs and so you talked about the all-weather rattan chairs on the front porch with the cushions, you know if you had four or six of those, you can move a table outside and do seating, with a nice table, really great looking and kind of have a cohesive look.
BETH: That’s right and if you need overflow you can go to the porch and grab those chairs maybe
CHAD:That’s it, that’s it. Overflow, it’s like when – it’s almost like Thanksgiving Day, right?
BETH: Exactly
CHAD:When you can grab all the chairs in the house to get everybody to sit down
BETH: Always too short
CHAD:You’re right, there’s always you have too short. So then you talked about also like poolside or in the lawn or in the garden; you know having a nice lounge whether it’s like a woven lounge or a cushion lounge I know that Fermob makes a wonderful lounge that is great by the pool, it doesn’t get hot and it’s a woven material as well as Sunset West makes a great chase lounge with the nice sunbrella thick, thick, thick cushion which is also a dynamite piece  
BETH: Oh I love the light coloured one what’s it called, driftwood
CHAD:I know, I know that’s what I knew you were going to say driftwood. You know and then – so what ends up happening is that you know you have both of those things and they can actually live in the same space and so you can have a more modern look with a more classic look and those blend together really well. And so let’s move out of the pool area and lets go into like covered cabana, pool house
BETH: Gazebo, that’s right, any of those. I think that’s where it’s really nice because you know you’re going to have protection from the rain which can certainly be an issue in the South not so much in California at the moment. But when you have rain issues you know your concern is the furniture whether it’s the cushion or what have you and the upkeep of that. So when I think about the cabanas or the gazebos I love the fact that you can introduce like all the beautiful cushions and things like that. You don’t necessarily have to cover or be concerned about
CHAD:You know you do bring that up and you know a lot of people when they do outdoor furniture and they even use sunbrella fabrics; what most people don’t remember is you still have care, you still have to take care of them
BETH: Absolutely
CHAD:Because they get dirty, they need to be cleaned and things like that
BETH: I try to keep mines inside or cover then you know. We sell covers on the website so you can protect your stuff. So maybe over that table area under the cabana since you’re going to have a roof overhead you could think about two things. You could go with electric lights but I think what would be really lovely would be to go with a candle light which is something you wouldn’t typically think of doing in the house because it can you know, be a little messy
CHAD:And burn it down
BETH: But yes I’ve seen we have a couple vendors that have where you put the candles in, you just put it on a pulley so you can bring it down and light the candles and pull it back up
CHAD:That sounds like a DIY husband project
BETH: Absolutely, but we women can do it too, don’t you worry
CHAD:Right, I had a feeling you were going to say that. That’s right, so you know, that’s a nice – that really is like super, really really nice feature that you can add. You know you can also add, you know and lot of people are aware of this but you could do tablescapes and the candles that look like cylinders over them or you can even do little floating votives with your qupe, won’t your say?
BETH: And I was going to say don’t forget Compania has those beautiful ones that are concrete and glass that you can have in your colours that sort of work with your…
CHAD:Oh right, right because you can do the twelve different finishes with them
BETH: You can work right in with your tables so all you see are the candles
CHAD:That’s it, that’s it, that is a great idea. I’m glad that you brought that up. So one of the other things that a lot of people start taking or they just don’t know or maybe somebody hasn’t given them any advice on it. Is that so when you’re outside having great – and I know great landscape lighting really as the night sets in and you’re out enjoying yourself sitting on your furniture the landscape lighting really like brings in such a great – I guess like an ambiance of the space, you know? And with the new LED lights it’s great, super-efficient, last forever. That was one of the biggest problems with landscape light shade you changed them all the time, now these bulb last for like ten years. So that’s really nice and that’s a great way to help build that outside and make it look more like an inside, you know. Landscape lighting it like having a table lamp, or a corner lamp or something like that
BETH: Well and too I think when you said the word LED people just cringle and think of those bright white or blue scary lights. But what we have to tell them is that now they have the LED lights that are in a nice warm colour and look just like the landscape – you would not know
CHAD:You would not know, you would never know. So when you start building these rooms outside, you really want to think about each piece
BETH: Each element
CHAD:Yeah, Yeah that’s really the…
BETH: The lighting, you really want to talk about the comfort of the seating that you’re in, maybe some pottery with some, I don’t know, maybe ferns, ficus something on the back area there so soften it up a bit, you don’t want it to become too hard of an area, you want to make it soft
CHAD:Yeah, I’m really – I’m super fascinated with the little olive trees
BETH: Yeah, I really like those too and I think that’s just because it’s not typically something in Louisiana that we see all the time
CHAD:Yeah, yeah definitely I mean I know like South Florida, places like California
BETH: People love tropical
CHAD:But like the little olive trees those are really great; they got pots nice cascading things out of that and so you know when you make these outdoor seating areas that you really want to make sure that you tie in all of the other things with you it. Whether it’s your landscape, the types of planting that you do, the nice trees for screening, to block out neighbours and a lot of people don’t have those same problems that we have here in Louisiana where I think probably our most wonderful neighbours that live on one side of us, what they’re 10.5 feet from one side of our house
BETH: We could probably hang out one window and hand them milk in the morning for their coffee
CHAD:Exactly, exactly. So when you have those kinds of situations and definitely New Orleans is one of those places but you know New Orleans, Chicago…
BETH: New York
CHAD:New York definitely where you need to have great privacy screening so that when you’re outside and you’re sitting and enjoying yourself whether its lounging by the pool like your said, you know those kinds of things you really want to finish this place off and it’s like putting curtains on your windows, you know
BETH: Exactly
CHAD:So, as we talk about different types of furniture, so now let’s break it down into I guess how you buy the furniture because that’s a really important part. You know like one of the very first things that you brought up was the all-weather rattan furniture and as a buyer; most buyers out there on the market today often don’t know I guess like what they’re buying, you know? They just see that one chair is $150 and one chair is $500 and are like “ok the chair that’s $150 looks like the chair that’s $500, what’s the difference?”
BETH: Right, or sometimes they’ll just think they’ve found a great deal and in fact they don’t realise they’re buying – the material that they’re buying is just not going to hold up in the weather
CHAD:Right, it’s inferior. You know the biggest thing that buyers of the all-weather rattan and some people don’t know what we’re talking about when we say all-weather rattan so that is the furniture that looks like wicker but it’s made out of pvc, right?
BETH: Right
CHAD:And so when they’re looking at it, they want to study a couple of things. One the thickness of the weave, if they put their finger on and they press it, does it push in, if it’s springy that’s your first indicator that you basically have straws – you know straw material, in what I mean straw like as in Mc Donald Straw. And then also the other thing that you want to take into consideration is the frame construction. A lot of manufacturers today to cut corners will do things in, make part of them aluminium, part of them in steel, all of it in steel and really the better product is going to be made with 100% aluminium frame wrapped in a thicker pcv weave and what happens from that is a metal frame when it rains rusts and the aluminium frames don’t. So therefore, the frames don’t break, if the frames break , let’s just say the couch now has to be put out on the street corner and taken it away
BETH: It’s kind of like the, you know the inexpensive blouse you absolutely love but you know you’re only going to get one season out of it. You just have to decide how much you love it because it’s going to be gone in a season. So yeah, definitely take your time, do your homework, and call and ask questions. If you’re looking at something grill them, ask them these questions and what it’s made out of so that you know whether or not it’s going to last and  that’s what the warranty is on it
CHAD:You know that’s a really good point and then also one of the other thing is because when you’re talking about all-weather rattan typically all those products have a cushion and so you want to make sure the filling material as well as the fabric is really meant to last, you know and we just spoke about this a little while ago that you really want to still cover, you know even though it’s outdoor fabric you want to protect it from the elements because the better care you take of it the longer the life span is. You there there’s no harm in picking the  cushions up standing them vertically and then putting a cover over the furniture it’s going to both help the actual fabric last longer, it’s not going to allow water to build up and sit because hey guess what, things will get mildew on them, no matter what, you’re going to have to clean them and wash them
BETH: Of course even sunbrella would if it’s wet enough
CHAD:Yeah, if it’s wet enough and definitely in Louisiana
BETH: It is wet
CHAD:It is wet enough, but it is – the one nice thing is you simple with the right soap a little brush and some water, you can clean them pretty quickly so it is a nice factor. So then the other thing that you want to take into consideration is when you’re talking about outdoor furniture you then, like we had spoken about like a chase lounge that isn’t an all-weather rattan, we’ve spoken about the fermob product. So when you’re looking at like patio type loungers for the pool area you want to make sure that they’re aluminium because aluminium you know like I mentioned doesn’t get hot and also today, a lot of pools are salt based
BETH: Yes, and that’s a deadly combination if you’re not using aluminium
CHAD:It is, a salt based pool and especially you know the real problem is, we have this problem in our backyard our polaris is wild he has that little whipping tail no matter like if we turn it down or change it or reduce it to make it shorter that tail just it spits like crazy and it sprays the salt water all over things and so by having the right type of aluminium furniture you’ll end up with longer lasting furniture. If you put mental pieces and you have salt water pool you’ll definitely have rusting mental furniture. And a lot of times that rust will corrode unto your decks whether you have a travertine deck or flagstone deck or even a concrete deck or pavers and it’ll leave the spots. You know one of the types of outdoor chairs that I really like is the low arm chair, that luxembourg low arm chair by fermob because in our particular circumstance we don’t have a lot of space in our backyard, I think what our backyard is like 33” x 60”?
BETH: Yes it’s very small
CHAD:And there’s a pool and a pool house and stairs that come off the house
BETH: That’s right
CHAD:And so we just have what, is it like 3ft on one side, 3ft on one side and we might have 6ft on the other side. So we don’t have a place around the pool to put a lounger but that low arm chair is at an angle that sits back and it’s super comfortable for anyone, especially guys – guys love that chair
BETH: Yeah, I always think it’s really funny when they’re at the store and I say “Oh go try that one” and they sort of look at it like hmmm. They minute they get down on it they’re like “oh wow, it’s comfortable”
CHAD:Exactly, that first experience I had when we were in Luxembourg Garden in Paris, you know and I remember and that’s kind of when we feel in love with that particular brand is when we found it and then from then on it was that’s the only thing that I can think of, it’s one of the nice things that comes in twenty four colours, which is dynamite
BETH: A colour for every person
CHAD:A colour for every person or personality, you might have five personalities
BETH: Yeah I saw an arrangement that’s going out tomorrow and it was quite colourful; white table with four different colour chairs in luxembourg
CHAD:Yes it was, it was and it even has that new colour, the lagoon colour which was just dynamite
BETH: It matches my shutters
CHAD:It matches your shutters, that’s right. So let’s just run through some simple things. You know front porches are great for swings, benches, and like you had mentioned the all-weather rattan chairs with nice cushions. Back patios are great for nice tables you know you can do the big long nice stone tables; you can actually even bring some of your indoor furniture out for little events. Make sure you think about your overhead lighting. You know talked about the chandeliers using the candles in them. Remember husbands you need a little DIY project …
BETH: Your tablescapes
CHAD:Pull a little rope and some pulleys and pull it up and down, personally me I would do everything not to have a little DIY project. On a side note; how many inches above the table does the chandelier need to be? Well it really doesn’t matter what the right measurement is supposed to be. But Beth I think, what you said it’s like 30” or 31”
BETH: Maybe 30”
CHAD:Yeah it depends, but if you have a tall family all your sons and husband will hit their heads on that chandelier. One of the other things we did talk about was; she’s over here parading around because she was right
BETH: I just looked it up online 30” to 34” woot! Woot!
CHAD:Yeah, exactly, exactly. We need to move the one above our head here four inches so that would help us but you know we also talked about the actual other elements that you can incorporate into a yard which would be landscape lighting, we touched on the LED lights and there’s a bunch of new LED lights out on the market that are really great, as well as incorporating tablescapes of candles and I know that Compania now makes those outdoor candle holders with the glass cylinders, which are really nice. We also talked about doing pots with plants and softening the space so you’re not just dumping some furniture outside and it just looks like you dumped furniture outside you actually try to make it look like a home outside. So maybe building your interior concept
BETH: And noise reduction too
CHAD:Yeah it does help and then carrying that same thing outside. So when your guests go from the front of your house, you know as they enter your house, they come in and then they go out back that there’s one consistent look and I think those are great ways to turn a whole living space, you where is all…
BETH: Inside out
CHAD:Inside and out
BETH: Today’s podcast is brought to you by http://www.audible.com/. Get a free audio book download and 30-day free trial at http://www.audibletrial.com/style. Over 150,000 titles to choose from for your iPhone, android, kindle or mp3 player. Again that’s http://www.audibletrial.com/style
CHAD:Alirght, so now after all this Beth, I think everybody’s ready to go outside
BETH: And enjoy that outdoor living space you’ve just created
CHAD:That’s it, that’s it. Hey thanks again for joining us today. I’m Chad Harris
BETH: And I’m Beth Harris
CHAD:And we’re from “Lasting Style Meets Everyday Life” you can find us seven days a week at 2918 Metairie Road. Always visit us http://www.athomewithbethandchad.com/ our blog, as well as you can shop with us online at https://www.thegardengates.com  Thanks again, we’ll see you soon!
BETH:Bye!

Twelve Legs and Three Bones: An Uptown Sunday Morning

Revisited from September 1, 2013. Sunday strolls to Satsuma with my three precious pups followed by tons of licks. Lizzie, Copper and George were like the three amigo’s that went everywhere with me. Since then, Mr. Cooper has past away due to an illness and was a very special Cavalier. Today, Lizzie spends her days at my retail store, Relish located on Metairie Road. George spends his days at our Firestone office which is more like a boys club with his doggie friends, Shadow and Cecil.

It may not be officially fall quite yet, but a break in the humidity and LSU’s opener W over TCU last night have us feeling pretty excited about starting September off right. As summer fades into autumn, I love to watch the neighborhood come alive again as my neighbors and I emerge from the frozen tundra of our AC-fortified homes to enjoy the beautiful weather.

No one on Plum Street loves the seasonal transition more than our beloved King Charles Cavaliers. Early this morning, Beth and I walked Mr. Cooper, Lizzie and George down the block to our favorite neighborhood spot, Satsuma Cafe. Even if we didn’t live in the neighborhood, Satsuma’s fresh ingredients and organic approach have the Harris family hooked as devoted regulars, and none more so than our crazy canines. It’s not a Sunday morning unless we’ve strolled our twelve legs across the street for three bones. Satsuma Cafe specializes in handmade dog treats, and let me tell you – Mr. Cooper, Lizzie and George know that leftovers are not allowed because their Peanut Butter and Bacon Dog Treats look good enough for their hungry owners to sneak a bite!

The five of us made quite the group this morning as our adorable King Charles Cavalier clique chomped away at their tasty treats while Beth and I enjoyed our own breakfast. The “Twelve Legs,” as we like to call them, love the attention of passersby – especially families with children. “Mommy, look at the pretty puppies!” “Can I pet him?” “Can I borrow one? I promise I’ll bring her back!”

When crazy Lizzie starts the Licking Reign of Terror on some innocent toddlers, it’s time to head back home. Happy first of September,  another successful Sunday morning in the books.

If you’d like to meet our four legged furry friends, you can visit with Beth at Relish New Orleans Monday to Saturday from 10a to 6p or catch her at Satsuma on Maple Street on Sunday mornings with Lizzie.