Buffalo Garden DIY garden art

The post-posts post

Posted here are where the posts were posted.

I made 35 poles for the Buffalo Style Garden Art Sale.

After nearly selling out in one hour, I think they went over well.

My wife, Leslie, helped “man” my booth at the Buffalo Style Garden Art Sale at the Buffalo & Erie County Botanical Gardens last weekend. She figured it was the least she could do, since it was her idea to make posts to sell.

I’m thankful Leslie was around to help. We sold 29 posts in the first hour of the sale. We sold out of two sizes and were left with only five of the tallest posts for that afternoon and into Sunday.

Painted caps and finials.

Sunday Saw Sawing

On Sunday, the tall poles – at about 8.5′ tall didn’t sell – until I sawed them right there on the table in my booth (thanks for holding them down for me Jack!). I sold two of them as I was sawing. Sawing them down slightly enabled me to price them lower – and enabled people to fit in their cars. The tall poles were not impulse purchases. You had to have a car with a roof rack, straps or bungee cords, and even a blanket or towel or two to protect them from scratching.

I sold all of them by end of day. Didn’t bring a single one back home – they all had new homes.

The start

My favorite part was the freehand pattern painted on the upper pars of the posts. No geometric patterns that needed to be measured and drawn out first!

I made six posts just for myself late last fall, in our basement. That blossomed into making, ultimately, 35 more. I enjoyed the process – my favorite being painting the freehand “patterns” on them. But they took a while.

I cannot measure how long it took to create one post, many had asked. I made 15 at a time. That’s all I had the space for. I did them in assembly-line fashion. 15 took about a month to make.

The Design

To make production easier, I sorta’ had a formula for their design.

I designed them to look good in sets.

Most were colors I have used on my house and potting shed – mostly because I had those extra exterior house paints lying around. Also, using them consistently made all the poles “family” together. If someone bought more than one, they would somehow look like there were intended to be together, even though the designs were all very different. And using colors from my own garden I felt it helped spread my design DNA into gardens throughout the area. People now recognize my posts!

On the very bottom portion, each of the four sides was painted in different colors. I assumed they would be obscured somewhat by plants, so I didn’t want any intricate designs there.

The next portion up was generally a geometric pattern that had to be measured and penciled out before paining.

The next level was, in many cases, a small square or block to add a wooden ornament of a flower or flourish.

The uppermost section was where I painted freehand patterns – dots, hand-drawn lines, vaguely botanical patterns, or confetti-looking patterns. I even tried some African-inspired patterns.

We sold a post every two minutes for the first hour of the Art Sale!

There may be more

I I could have sold another 30, if I had them. Once garden tour season winds down, I will most likely make more, and just sell them here at the house. I’ve had no less than a dozen people contact me about how to get one. I am interested on doing more with some African-inspired patterns, maybe even using more earth tones.

I did reserve three poles, finials, and caps to create poles using all the old wood stains I have in the basement, left over from other projects.

As long as I’m not under any deadline pressure, I can work at my leisure. Getting them done for the Garden Art Sale was nerve-wracking!

Did you buy a post? Send me photos!

Below are photos of where some of the posts wound up. I’ll keep adding them here as I collect photos…

This one ended up in the garden of my friends Deb & Ken. They’re both artists – and we have some of each of their creations. It gave me much satisfaction that something I created is in their garden.
Probably the most visible setting – at the intersection of Bidwell Parkway, Argyle Park and and Potomac Avenue, next to Buff Sem – and smack dab in the middle of the Bidwell Farmers Market. I’ve already had friends text when they’ve seen “Charlier Pole” sightings. They’re actually placed in the hellstrip between sidewalk and street. Greg, the new owner, has more faith in fellow humans. This is also the lead photo, above.
Melanie’s Garden. Photo by Melanie.
Kathy & Mike Shadrack’s Smug Creek Gardens in the Boston Hills. She was partial to purple, so I aimed some in that direction.
I don’t remember where this pole is! I can’t trace back where the photo came from!
A Buffalo garden. Photo by Carolyn.
Not yet installed in the garden of another artist/architect Carol Siracuse and interior designer Tom Palmuso – other artists whose work I admire. Photo by Carol.
Farthest traveled posts – in a Saratoga Springs, NY, garden. Photo by the lovely and talented Rhonda King.
A Newbergh Street garden on Buffalo’s East Side
The only custom one I’ve made so far. This one is on Cayuga Lake in the Finger Lakes. The street name is spelled out in nautical flags, and the house number in nautical pennants. The finial looks like a fishing bobber, and the post incorporates a wavy pattern.
Close to home – in my own back yard.
My front yard.
I love seeing this one on Buffalo’s Sixteenth Street – because it’s in the garden of my first house where we lived for ten years before our current house!
The sheet we handed out (or were supposed to) when someone bought a post. The first 29 happened so fast, we forgot to give these to the new post owners!
Pricing. May have to increase the cost of the shortest post in the future. Between the wooden post, caps, finials, wood ornaments, spikes, paints and varnish, there was very little to cover the cost of my time!

Here are some other DIY projects I’ve done:

2 comments on “The post-posts post

  1. They are gorgeous! I’m not surprised people like them.


  2. Absolutely brilliant and beautiful. What a phenomenal amount of work and creativity.


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