Grinch Tree Ball

Garden Therapy’s Best of 2011

2011 was without a doubt an exciting year full of garden therapy.  It all began with some Proposals for a New Year which really launched the Weekend Project series of tutorials that go up each and every week.  It took a little while to get a groove going, but now Garden Therapy is loaded with crafty/garden-y/foodie projects that will hopefully inspire you to dig in.  After all of the blood, dirt, and paper cuts it was hard to choose the best of 2011.  Nonetheless, here they are.


1. Garden Therapy Handmade Shop Opens!  

Opening the new Etsy shop to sell a hand crafted line of floral throw pillows was by far the most exciting thing that happened this year.   The Studio Blooms line of throw pillows started from flowers grown in my gardens which were then photographed in macro, blown up to mammoth proportions, and printed on fabric using the giclée technique.  Each pillow represents a piece of artwork for your home,  yet  artwork you can cuddle up to and read a book on.  Every step was carefully (obsessively?) planned out and executed, so the final cushions are truly show-stopping.

A labour of love that took well over a year and a half to launch, it’s been a great success so far and I have very high hopes for 2012.  Look for new designs, new products, and new locations where you can buy Garden Therapy Handmade in the coming year.  And remember, each design is a limited edition so please snap them up before they are all gone.

2. Free Printable Canning Labels  

It seems a shame to put so much love into a a jam, jelly, or pickle to then just label the lid with a sharpie.  These printable canning labels are also meant for the canning jar’s snap lid so it get’s recycled when the lid does with no sticky glue to soak off the glass jar.  Oh, and did I mention they are free?  Yup, just download and print ’em on label paper.  You’re welcome.

3. The Natural Skincare Series

While making bath and body care products isn’t technically gardening, these projects all honour nature by using only natural essential oils, colourings, and other ingredients.  Tutorials for handmade cold process soap, bath bombs, sugar scrub, bath salts, and lip balm were incredibly popular and made amazing holiday gifts.  Good news, there will be more recipes and tutorials to come in 2012!

4. Candles in Many Shapes and Forms

The first candles to be posted were these Citronella CAN-dles.  And while no bugs bit me while they were alight, I was bitten by the candle-making bug!  Soy and beeswax jar candles followed which were beautiful in their simplicity.  The real star of the show, however, was the beeswax flower jar candles, where a 3-dimensional beeswax surprise hides under the lid of these.  A perfect holiday gift, although so far, those who have them have not wanted to burn them and watch the flower melt away.  To that I say, light away and make more…and here’s how.

5. The Grinch Tree, Whoville Party and & Holiday Decorations

Speaking of the holidays, the Grinch tree was the singing Who’s that warmed up my Grinchy demeanour this holiday season.  Feeling a little blue and growly before the holidays, I didn’t want to put up a Christmas tree this year.  The compromise was to decorate a tree that mirrored the feelings, and the Grinch tree was born.  And just like the movie, my spirits warmed up and the true meaning of Christmas was revealed: to make festive holiday planters and decorate the house and throw a Whoville-themed party!  Thanks, Grinchy.

6. Wreath Making

There is always a wreath on the Garden Therapy front door, and maybe another few scattered around the garden.  Tutorials for Making an Evergreen Wreath, Lavender Wreath, and Halloween Hop Wreath were easy and fun projects that didn’t cost a penny.  Love!

7. Halloween Planters, Jack-o-Planterns, & Rock Spiders

Now that Hop Wreath wasn’t the only Halloween decoration this year.  Scaaary planters with severed hands, witch’s brooms, and kale (OK, not too scary) were unique natural decorations.  But nothing was as fun as the Jack-o-planterns with sedum eyes and grassy hair.

Modern Concrete Planters

8. Concrete Garden Projects

Being lucky enough to receive a review copy of Concrete Garden Projects: Easy & Inexpensive Containers, Furniture, Water Features & More meant a fun afternoon making modern planters and leaf-print stepping stones.  I’m totally addicted now!

9. Jammin’ Recipes

Not as much canning happened as normally does, but there were still some fantastic recipes this year: Winter Marmalade, Black & Blue Berry Jam, and Bourbon Cranberry Sauce topped the list.

10. Tangerine Tango

The final highlight of 2011 was the announcement of Pantone’s 2012 colour of the year, Tangerine Tango which will undoubtedly be a popular colour in fashion and home décor (already seeing it everywhere!) but there are also some pretty cool plants that can spice up your garden.  Also cool, a set of Studio Blooms pillows rocks out in Tangerine Tango.  Hmmm.  That is a really great way to start of 2012.

Thank you to everyone who has visited in 2011 and I so very much hope that you will be back this year.  Happy gardening!


About the Author : Stephanie RoseAn artistic gardener aiming to feed the body & soul through an urban potager garden & a community veggie plot in Vancouver.View all posts by Stephanie Rose

  1. Doreen Grace
    Doreen GraceJanuary 3,12

    Beautiful projects, and that soap looks really yummy – although that’s probably not what you were going for. I love your pillow designs! :)

  2. Melody of
    Melody of chattychics.comJanuary 4,12

    Beautiful! All of your projects are so pretty! LOVE the pillows! Please come share these off at my place today! You could win a $5 Starbucks gift card!

  3. Barb
    BarbJanuary 4,12

    Awesome projects! love the pumpkins! love your blog!

  4. Linda @ it all started with paint
    Linda @ it all started with paintJanuary 4,12

    Love all your projects! Whose pillows are amazing … and the grinch tree too cute. I need to visit that post to see if you give a how to make that adorable ornament in the pic …

  5. Anne
    AnneJanuary 4,12

    I’m so glad you popped by my blog today & left a comment! I love your blog – so many cute ideas. New follower here xox

  6. Marty@A Stroll thru Life
    [email protected] Stroll thru LifeJanuary 4,12

    Great projects. I especially love the fabric for the pillows. Thanks for joining TTT. Hugs, Marty

  7. Jill
    JillJanuary 4,12

    That grinchy ornament might just have got me in the holiday mood…if I had seen it about a month ago :) New follower to make sure I don’t miss all this goodness from now on! Thanks for stopping by my blog – hope you do make that tote :)

  8. Shelia
    SheliaJanuary 4,12

    Oh, my! What wonderful projects! I believe you are the most creative one! Happy New Year!
    Be a sweetie,
    Shelia ;)

  9. Jane @ Cottage at the Crossroads
    Jane @ Cottage at the CrossroadsJanuary 4,12

    Hello! I’m visiting from WOW. You had some amazing project during 2011 that I’d like to read more about. I especially love your flower pillows and your pumpkins with succulents! We have a lot of similar interests so I’m going to follow you!

  10. Cameron
    CameronJanuary 4,12

    Thanks for the kind words on my blog …- I wish you weren’t a no-reply blogger! I love your 2011 recap – so many great ideas!

    • Stevie
      StevieJanuary 4,12

      Cameron, what’s a no reply blogger?

  11. Michelle
    MichelleJanuary 5,12

    So many great ideas, those pumpkins actually made my laugh out loud what a great idea. I just wish we celebrated Halloween in Australia then I’d have an excuse to make one!

  12. Christina at I Gotta Create!
    Christina at I Gotta Create!January 5,12

    What a great array of projects! Love those pumpkin planters!!! <3 Christina

  13. Erin {Lavender and Lemon Drops}
    Erin {Lavender and Lemon Drops}January 5,12

    GREAT posts! I LOVE your throw pillow options :)

  14. Ces
    CesJanuary 6,12

    these post have a lot of great ideas

  15. Liz
    LizJanuary 6,12

    Oh those pumpkins are darling! :) Looks like you got some great projects done.

    Happy New Year!


    P.S. I’m following you now… hope you will come by and say hi.

  16. janice
    janiceJanuary 6,12

    Those pillows are amazing!
    here from tt&j

  17. Honey
    HoneyJanuary 7,12

    You had a year of fabulous projects! Thanks for sharing at Potpourri Friday!

  18. Tonia @ The Gunny Sack
    Tonia @ The Gunny SackJanuary 8,12

    What a great year! I love the new pillows…so beautiful! Thanks for sharing.

  19. Sherry
    SherryJanuary 11,12

    What a great year of projects! Thank you for linking it to Home Sweet Home!

  20. Dorsi
    DorsiJanuary 26,12

    I love your site! So many great ideas here. I have to go over and check out your Etsy store – I love those pillows. I’ve linked your RSS feed to my article about gardening as therapy. I’ll be back to read more. Glad I found you!