outdoor decorating ideas

“The Secret Garden was what Mary called it when she was thinking of it.

She liked the name, and she liked still more the feeling that when its beautiful old walls shut her in no one knew where she was.

It seemed almost like being shut out of the world in some fairy place. The few books she had read and liked had been fairy-story books, and she had read of secret gardens in some of the stories.”

~ Frances Hodgson Burnett

Today I’m so excited to be part of a really fun challenge…..Creating With the Classics.  If you stopped by from The Hunted Interior….so happy you are here.

Eight bloggers are partnering together to bring the classics to life through fabric and design.  We were each assigned a classic novel and then we designed a space using fabric and the novel as our inspiration.

And you know how much I love a challenge.

My classic novel I was given is one written by Frances Hodgson Burnett that is close to my heart…..

….A Secret Garden.

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Here on the farm we have a creek on one side of the property and a pond on the other.

And at the very back of our land…..there is a tall forest with trees and bushes and trails and fallen logs and garden paths full of honeysuckle and wild flowers and moss and trailing vines.

The perfect setting for a secret garden.

decorating outdoors

And when I was younger and I read about Mary and Colin and Dickon and the robin prancing and dancing on the garden wall….

….I used to dream of a place like the ivy-covered garden with roses and benches and garden walkways.

A place all my own.

Just for me.

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A place where the trees overheads whispered quietly as the leaves rustled out an unspoken melody.

Where the crickets chirped and the bees buzzed.

And the forest wrapped itself around and around….

…..and encircled the garden with a simple beauty.

outdoor ideas for decorating

And the summer breezes blew gently.

And the sun peeked out from behind the clouds and sprinkled through the trees.

And a the ivy covered the branches and hidden pathways.

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Where time slowed and the minutes stretched quietly into hours in that secret garden….

….surrounded by everything that is real and right.

And the garden waited patiently as the clouds drifted by.

And you dreamed all the dreams you had forgotten you ever wished for.

how to decorate outdoors

And there….for a moment…..in the middle of the busy that is this wonderful thing called life….

….you remembered the joy of taking a moment to do absolutely nothing.

To sit and simply….be.

Just a green carpet of grass and sunshine overhead…..

….and a secret garden.

“If you look the right way, you can see that the whole world is a garden.” ~Frances Hodgnes Burnett

creating with the classics

Be sure to visit the next stop on the tour….The Handmade Home.

And just in case you are planning a secret garden of your own here’s the fabrics I used in my post.

You can click on the links to find out more about each fabric.

online fabric elephants

online fabric flamingos

online fabric sherbert twill

online fabric sydney

online fabric gotcha

disclaimer:  All fabrics are from Online Fabrics.  I was provided with fabric by Online Fabrics as part of the promotion.

All opinions on totally amazing fabrics and secret gardens are completely my own. 🙂

Want to know how to decorate your home for free?
Click here to get my FIVE BEST secrets.


  1. Image for Marisa Franca @ All Our Way Marisa Franca @ All Our Way

    I love secrets -- and to have a garden no one knows about -- just me and you, of course -- I'll share that secret. To giggle and laugh and to whisper and dream. Books are magical and so are secret gardens. Beautiful photos, my friend and you did an excellent job of making that magical place. I'm just glad that for a classic you didn't get Lady Chatterley's Lover :-) An English garden -- a tryst hmmmmmmm!!

  2. Image for Dee Dee

    Hey Karianne, you executed so beautifully and created a magical space! Love it! I too would like to know source info for Color Outside the Lines fabric. Tx for sharing. Ciao, Dee

  3. Image for Suzan Suzan

    How beautiful !!! We have a little shaded garden ( outside the back yard that I'm dying to turn into a secret garden just as soon as I can crawl out of the worst home renovation I have EVER taken on lol ) LOVE your little secret garden - just perfect! XOX

  4. Image for Karen Karen

    I just love your fabric choices! They all coordinate so well with each other. Your farm sounds amazing with all that space, our neighbors are practically on top of us where I live :-(

  5. Image for Amye Mae Amye Mae

    A beautiful post about one of my favorite books! Love your approach to the challenge and especially being transported back to The Secret Garden through your writing.

  6. Image for Sue Sue

    Oooooh, so lovely! I'm in the process of creating a secret garden. I suspect it will be some time before it looks anywhere near as lush as yours!

  7. Image for Judy Judy

    A creek AND a pond? How lucky are you, KariAnne?!? I'm taking a mental vacation while sitting at my desk here at work. Your secret garden is so inviting and beautiful.

  8. Image for Katie Katie

    I am quite The Secret Garden fan and I really enjoyed this. Looks like a lovely place to hide and relax. I grew up with the Hallmark movie and just recently got to visit Highclere Castle where is was filmed, fulfilling my dreams.

  9. Image for Jessica Jessica

    KariAnne- I mean, really?! How could anyone refuse that?! But, also, of COURSE you got my favorite-childrens-novel-of-all-time-that-spoke-to-my-heart! Of course you did. It was fate. And it is beautiful. I am reading this tardy for the party so I know about the poison ivy so I will not hangout there, but let's recreate it somewhere else and we can play and drink sweet tea. Yeah? xoxoxo

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