HOUSE: Newburgh + Scavenging

Scavenged (sort of): new chairs for the garden.

Yesterday we brought home a pair of Bertoia side chairs to use in the back garden. They weren’t a true scavenged find as they are new, but I’m counting them as such since they were reduced in price by more than 75%. Yes!! They both have a wee bit of rust staining around some of the welds—barely noticeable, really—but since we’ll be using them outside anyway, it doesn’t matter.

Honestly, when a single wire chair retails for $421, the only way it’s coming home with me is if it’s DRASTICALLY discounted or if I find it in the garbage. I am forever grateful for the existence of the DWR Annex!

You wouldn’t know it from reading my posts, but there’s 500 SF garden at the back of this house. Sadly, we haven’t done anything with it other than clean up the trash, remove a chain link dog pen (thanks, Adam!), and level the ground a bit. Before anything is planted, it desperately needs a tall fence to hide the neighbors’ yards. There’s also a rather annoying mulberry tree that we want to have removed, as the copious amounts of squishy berries it drops all over the place during summer render the yard virtually unusable.

It’s an ugly little patch of land right now, but you’ll see—these chairs are just the beginning! It’ll be looking like Carin Goldberg‘s garden in no time.

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  • Reply sandra March 23, 2008 at 4:30 pm

    it’s going to be great. i look forward to seeing some summer in your garden (and in sweden too! there’s thick white snow all over the place, winter came in march – uh?!). hope you’ve had a good weekend.

  • Reply zee March 23, 2008 at 4:37 pm

    Our garden is in a very similar state, it’s so depressing! What a terrific score those Beroia chairs were, lucky you!

  • Reply carlene March 23, 2008 at 4:51 pm

    What a great score!

    I saved that garden photo, too. I have complete faith that you can make your yard look just as beautiful.

  • Reply stephanie March 23, 2008 at 5:11 pm

    I wish I had a little patch of garden to transform. Fantastic inspiration garden! I love that everything has its own little square. You should consider running the fence planks horizontally in different widths. It has a really modern look to it. I did a quick google search- check out this link.

  • Reply read me... March 23, 2008 at 5:27 pm

    Great, great find… Lucky you indeed!

  • Reply Anna at D16 March 23, 2008 at 5:30 pm

    Stephanie, that is a great fence (I have admired similar ones!), but custom fencing is SO expensive. Even off-the-self from the big box places gets pricey when you add it all up. This (like everything else in our house) is going to be a budget project, but it’s nice to fantasize! 🙂

  • Reply michelle March 23, 2008 at 6:06 pm

    those chairs look great! good luck with the renovations

  • Reply stephanie March 23, 2008 at 6:29 pm

    Yep, custom anything is sooo pricey (we were looking at custom cabinets for our kitchen at one point! ouch!) I can’t remember what show it was (something on home and garden tv) but they actually used the existing chain link fence and somehow attached the boards to it. I know that sounds ghetto but it looked good!

  • Reply amy March 23, 2008 at 7:35 pm

    love yr blog! so happy to have found it…lusting those chairs – perfect score!

  • Reply jennifer in sf March 24, 2008 at 1:44 am

    Maybe you should apply for one of those HGTV shows and they’ll come and do your backyard? They might do some crazy stuff, but I’ll bet they’ll give you a free fence!

    And that is a fabulous backyard model you have there. And the chairs are pretty nice too.

  • Reply Anna at D16 March 24, 2008 at 8:33 am

    I’ve thought of that, Jennifer, but then the term “water feature” (and images like these, YIKES) starts reverberating in my head and I panic!!

  • Reply lindsay March 24, 2008 at 11:35 am

    I just scored a bertoia side chair on Ebay for 60$ in great vintage condition. I’d love to collect them for our deck too. As for the mulberry tree, we have 2 and they are a bother. I do hate to cut down trees though, so they’re staying. The berries stain the kids feet in the summer 🙁 It is however, funny to see the squirrels get a little tipsy off the fermented berries!

  • Reply amy March 24, 2008 at 12:09 pm

    what a steal! i am trying very hard not to be jealous. or maybe i can just come over and hang out on your chairs in your backyard for a little while?

  • Reply Ryan March 24, 2008 at 3:42 pm

    In our previous (rented) house there was a section of 3′ chain link fence that ran from behind the neighbor’s garage to meet the corner of our fence. After a few months our dog figured out how to jump over it and I created horizontal cedar fence panels that I attached to the chainlink with zip ties. I guess I wouldn’t want to do an entire yard like that it was pretty easy for my 20ish feet. I just screwed the cedar fence boards (recycled) to 5′ tall cedar 1x4s and used the zip ties around the structural parts of the chainlink fence (the fence posts and the top rail. Once you cut off the long end you can’t even see the tie.

  • Reply jennifer in sf March 24, 2008 at 7:35 pm

    Well it’s with good reason that you panic. Water feature? Seriously. Don’t they know that those things already have names???

  • Reply Shalom March 26, 2008 at 9:20 pm

    Love those chairs! Your yard looks the perfect size to re-create that garden.

  • Reply sweet fine day March 27, 2008 at 6:46 am

    I’ve always wanted a bertoia chair, but haven’t made the
    leap. I love how the MoMa sculpture garden looks with all those chairs! I’m now obsessed with the child size bertoia chairs – they look so fantastic in a slightly smaller proportion.

  • Reply Lauren March 27, 2008 at 8:46 am

    Those chairs are amazing. Is the DWR Annex open all year? I wonder if a trip to the annex from NYC would be do-able, if I’m just there on a quick vacation? I went to DC and had a table shipped home but I wonder how that would work at DWR. Those chairs would be worth the trouble.

  • Reply Zinzi March 27, 2008 at 1:26 pm

    You lucky lady you. I am truly jealous. GREAT find!

  • Reply Shelley March 27, 2008 at 4:30 pm

    I saved that backyard photo from Domino as well b/c I plan to do my small twin house backyard in a similar manner! I want it a bit softer though, not as many sectioned off plantings but a few cypress and a pear tree with no fruit (but fast growing),and a small shed. I love the fence, the pea gravel and the slate slabs, very easy to maintain, pleasant and clean euro garden. I’m afraid to see how much it will cost as our yard space is about 1000 sq. ft. I plan on having the fence and shed installed professionally and we will handle the pea gravel,slabs and shrubs…unless I feel really overwhelmed by it all…good luck with your yard…I’m anxious to see it complete. Not many blogs deal with the yard area.

  • Reply Anna at D16 March 27, 2008 at 7:48 pm

    sweet fine day: One of my favorite antique stores has a baby Bertoia with a blue pad for sale, and I always kind of want to buy it. (And then force my dog to sit in it.)

    Lauren: The DWR Annex is indeed open all year:
    I will warn you, though, that they don’t provide shipping. They do have a couple of independent trucking companies that they work with, but you pay the carrier directly. I don’t know if it would be possible to transport stuff all the way to Florida (that’s where you are, right?) using their carriers. ALSO…the $100 Bertoia chairs are only the ones with rusting on them. The others are $200-300 depending on condition. It’s kind of a crapshoot as to what they’ll have in the store at any given time, but it is a TON of stuff. Some things are in perfect condition (overstock) and aren’t reduced much, and other things look like they were attacked by werewolves and are practically free.

  • Reply Felicia March 28, 2008 at 12:44 pm

    I’ve seen some amazing tiny backyard garden makeovers by Matt James, host of City Gardener.

  • Reply leah March 30, 2008 at 11:10 am

    haha! i have that issue of domino kicking around somewhere. for my computer chair, i use a wire chair that i found in my back alley. it’s stained and horribly rusted and actually more than likely just the frame for a cushioned patio chair, but it has a similar look to the chairs you found so reduced! i put a sheepskin throw from ikea on top of it after seeing somehting similar in a midcentury modern vintage furniture store here in vancouver.

  • Reply S.HOPtalk March 31, 2008 at 4:17 pm


    I’m new here…great blog!

    I love your garden inspiration photo and your great chair finds. We took on a similar project last summer. The previous year we went through a major remodel. As a result, our backyard was trashed. Our remodel chewed up our landscaping budget, so we went the DIY route. My husband and I were hauling 4 cubic yards of pea gravel until midnight on July 3rd to have everything set for our 4th of July party…it ended up being 110 degrees the next day and no one went outside. 🙂

    It’s a lot of work, but so worth it when you’re sitting out in your little slice paradise.

    Good luck

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