Other than planting flowers and rearranging of perennials, I love putting the finishing touches on my flower gardens by adding some Garden Decor or Garden Art. My favorite Garden Decor pieces are upcycled or repurposed vintage items.
One of the most popular posts here on Gingham Gardens is Garden Vignettes Using Flea Market Finds, and another is my latest garden decor post, Upcycled Vintage Garden Decor (the links are shared at the end of the post). Using old repurposed items in garden décor, and home decor for that matter, is a trendy thing to do. Although lots of us old school gardeners could care less about what’s trendy, we just do what we like and have been doing it for years. If you’re new to gardening, I would just encourage you to experiment to find your style and just go with what you like and what suits you.
Some great places to look for cool garden art and decor items are: estate sales, garage sales, thrift stores, and my favorite, flea markets. I usually find the best prices at garage sales and flea markets. Also if you find something you really want at a flea market or garage sale you can usually haggle to get the price down.
Ideas for Garden Decor Vignettes
Garden Vignettes are little groupings of junk put together and nestled in among the flowers to add a bit of character to the garden.
Here’s an upcycled barn wood bench that I picked up at a boutique. I use it just about every year somewhere in my gardens or on my porch. The flowers in the planter are Torenia (Wishbone Plant).
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The Barnwood Bench is styled a little differently here.
A little vignette I put together one year on my front porch. The plant shelf was picked up at an estate sale, the galvanized water can was from a garage sale and the little wood planter was a thrift store find.
I have tons of the shorter shepherd’s hooks and I like using them to hang teapots, little decorative watering cans and little pails from them. If I recall correctly, I picked up this little yellow watering can at a thrift store for a couple of bucks. The perennials in this picture are Black-Eyed Susans and Zaegreb Coreopsis. The annuals include Gomphrena, Alyssum, Browallia (Blue Bells), Marigolds and Snapdragons.
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Here’s another little vignette using a galvanized pail filled with annual Lobelia hanging from a shepherd’s hook. The flowers between the frog and turtle are Torenia.
Some of my favorite garden decor pieces from Amazon (You’ll see most of these around Gingham Gardens):
Using Repurposed Junk in the Gardens
I got a great deal on this old vintage milk can at a flea market several years ago. This thing is really heavy and my sweet hubby who indulges me with my addictions, or rather hobbies, carried it all the way to the car. We now take a wagon when we go to flea markets. It was exceptionally ugly, thus the reason for it’s cheap price tag, so I sanded it down and spray painted it. I might change its color someday, but for now I like the blue. Here it is with red Calibrochoa and Cardinal Climber Vine. The Clematis pictured is Blue Rhapsody. The other blooming perennials are Campanula (Wedding Bell, I believe) and Sun Drops.
Here’s my upcycled milk can in a shady spot with a Fucshia planted in it. I believe the giant Hosta is Paradigm.
If you’ve followed Gingham Gardens for any length of time, you’ve seen this old chair. Since this picture, it’s gotten a paint job so it stands out better against the aged cedar fencing. The Hydrangea pictured is Twist and Shout. The galvanized planter on the chair is filled with Fuchsia, Vinca Vine and Asparagus Fern.
It’s so fun to style up this repurposed ladder every year. I picked it up at an estate sale several years ago and it has made many appearances in my gardens.
Another favorite is this old wheelbarrow I picked up at an estate sale.
My repurposed whiskey barrel planter isn’t going to last too much longer, but I’ll keep planting in it until it just falls apart. I’ve used it both dumped over like in the picture below and sitting up.
In recent years, the old whiskey barrel is used upright to cover a tree stump.
Here’s a little vignette I put together on my deck one year using a wicker basket I’d picked up at a thrift store. Notice how I used a terra cotta clay pot upside down to act as a table and add some height to this display.
Using Natural Elements As Garden Decor
I also love to use junk I can find in nature like field stones or logs (especially birch). I used to take my kids and their friends to construction sites to pick up field stones for me. I’ll just say they weren’t thrilled, but they did enjoy getting paid for their labor and it usually meant a trip to Dairy Queen. This is a cute little vignette I put together in the shade using some birch logs and rocks. The orange and white flowers are Impatiens and the Heuchera (Coral Bells) is Limelight.
Here’s another cool “pinteresty” project my hubby did for me. He hollowed out this maple log and I used it for a planter for a few years. And, another watering can hanging on a shepherd’s hook.
It’s also fun to add a water feature to your gardens. I miss our little pond, but I don’t miss the work of cleaning it out in the spring.
Other Related Articles You’ll Enjoy:
Garden Vignettes Using Flea Market Finds
Upcycled Vintage Garden Decor
Creative Flower Container Gardening
The Best Annual Flowers
Classic Perennials That Every Flower Garden Needs
Creating Whimsy In Your Garden (a guest post I wrote for Shifting Roots)
Upcycled Items to Use as Garden Decor
There are certainly lots more junk items or repurposed items, but these are just some of my favorites. I draw the line at car parts and bathroom fixtures, but to each their own. I have an entire board in Pinterest dedicated to Garden Décor and Junk. Some of my favorite items to upcycle or reuse in the garden are:
Galvanized milk pails
Other galvanized farm buckets and containers
Old wood windows
Vintage milk cans
Vintage mason jars
Galvanized watering cans
Old wicker baskets
Old picket fencing
Vintage wooden tool boxes
Old terra cotta clay pots
If you like what you see here, I’d love to have you join me! And, I promise it will totally be worth your time, with more awesome gardening ideas coming once or twice a week. As an added bonus to subscribing, you’ll have access to our very useful Free Gardening Printables Resource Library. Be sure to pick up your copy of my free printable 2019 Gardener’s Calendar. Every month features a picture of a vignette from my gardens (include lots of my garden décor pictures), along with gardening tasks for the month and a place to write notes.
Do you use junk or upcycled vintage items to decorate your gardens? What are some of your favorite garden decor or garden art items?
Thanks for stopping by Gingham Gardens today. I hope you’re enjoying your visit and are coming up with some ideas for your own gardens. Feel free to hang around for a bit and check out some other gardening goodies.
p.s. Go ahead and feel free to “pin” these pictures. If you hover in the upper left-hand corner of the picture, you’ll see the little Pinterest icon. Just click it and pin away.
p.p.s I’d love to have you follow me on Pinterest. Lots of great gardening ideas and tons of gardener’s eye candy.
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