Sunday, May 22, 2011

A garden folly

 One day this past week
my daughter and I took a walk to the lake.
We walked down a street that we've walked
down many times before.
But this time, something was different.

This wonderful old building
has magically appeared
in the backyard of an old estate.

It was never ever there before.

It's very old, though you can't tell from my cell phone photos.

The homeowners must have purchased
this wonderful old garden folly
and had it moved here.

A small team of landscapers were
very busy moving dirt, new trees,
and plants. I tried to peek
to take some close up pictures of what
they were working on
but these were the only ones I
felt comfortable in taking ---
 the view from the street.
(My daughter was embarrassed that
I was taking pictures at all!)

In a month from now,
this fantastic new addition will look
like it has been there for a hundred years.

The architectural details are stunning. Original wavy glass window panes too.

This  similar structure Brookline, Massachusetts. Would swear they were the same, minus some figurines.

This one in Medford. Massachusetts

And this last one is from Wakefield, Massachusetts

Wouldn't it be interesting 
to know where this
one was moved from?
(I'll let you know if two figurines appear on the rooftop!)

The following is the definition for a FOLLY taken from Wikipedia:

In architecture, a folly is a building constructed primarily for decoration, but either suggesting 
by its appearance some other purpose, or merely so extravagant that it transcends the normal 
range of garden ornaments or other class of building to which it belongs. In the original use 
of the word, these buildings had no other use, but from the 19th to 20th centuries the term 
was also applied to highly decorative buildings which had secondary practical functions such
as housing, sheltering or business use.
18th century English gardens and French landscape gardening often featured Roman temples, which symbolized classical virtues or ideals. Other 18th century garden follies represented Chinese temples, Egyptian pyramids, ruined abbeys, or Tatar tents, to represent different continents or historical eras. Sometimes they represented rustic villages, mills and cottages, to symbolize rural virtues.

Partial List of follies in the United States

All older photos credit:


Kim @ Savvy Southern Style said...

Isn't that pretty. It would be neat if you could take closer shots later. Maybe you can meet the owners and find out the history.

Anonymous said...

Beautiful! I have been facinated with these structures for at least forty years. Would love to have a tiny one, somewhere in our gardens.

Ann from On Sutton Place said...

Imagine that? How wonderful to save and old building by moving it to a new home. I think you should sneak over and see what's inside! Happy Sunday...~Ann

marty (A Stroll Thru Life) said...

Such a fabulous building. I would love to see more of it also. The architecture is stunning. Also, your playroom post below is fabulous too. Love the brick and I also love the carpet. Beautiful room. Hugs, Marty

Cindy said...

WOW, what stunningly beautiful architecture...and wavy glass too!!! Thanks so much for sharing, eye candy for sure!

Pamela Gordon said...

That is so interesting! It looks so much like the first one below it minus the figures on the roof. What a beautiful structure. I have been to Wakefield Mass. when I was a teen.

Emily said...

hi Alison, What a magical new discovery on your walk. The little house is almost identical to the ones in your research photos, amazingly similar. I had to smile at your daughter's reaction to your taking pics. I've been there! Great post, isn't it just wonderful we always have a camera with us!

The French Hutch

Upscale Downhome said...

I would love to know more about it and about garden follies in general. Very beautiful and very interesting. Thanks for sharing!

Alison @ The Polohouse said...

Just added the Wikipedia history on follies, and I will try to see if I can drive by tomorrow and see what progress has been made!
Keep you posted!

Heidi said...

Love it! Don't we all deserve a little Folly in our backyards?

Blue Creek Home said...

I sure wish one of these beauties would appear in my yard complete with the landscaping team!!
I agree with Ann - I might just have to take a closer peek!!!

d e l i g h t said...

What a gorgeous building! Thanks for sharing the information from wiki. Very interesting.

A Hint of Home said...

They do look amazingly similar!
What a surprise that must have been to see that suddenly appear on your walk.
Maybe you will be able to find out more about it. Would love to hear any facts you find out.

Stephanie said...

What a beautiful addition to that property!

Linda said...

That beautiful building would have lots of history. I would be neat to know where it came from. Drop by.
I did pick up that platter you and I were talking about.

Olive Cooper said...

Haha, funny that it appeared. Children do not get it sometimes. Neither do neighbors as I lay on my abdomen taking images of my flowers. The folly is quite beautiful and thanks for sharing it.

Babs said...

Alison, What a wonder to see it appear almost "overnight". Do you know anyone involved with the local history group who might give a clue? It'll be interesting to see how the mystery unfolds. :) Have fun discovering all the details.

Cindy said...

What an absolutely gorgeous folly! I love the info that you supplied, I have heard of "follies" in old novels, but never had seen one to know what it was.
I hope you are able to talk to the person who owns it, it would be so interesting to know where it came from.
Hugs, Cindy

Tammy@Beatrice Banks said...

Wow! Learn something new everyday. I didn't know what garden follies were. But these you showed us are gorgeous!

michele at hellolovelyinc said...

it's so so charming, and i love the idea of cherishing history and lovely architecture so much as to save it and enjoy it anew.

i'm calling you mrs. peepers though.



Sarah said...

Alison, wouldn't it be great fun to have one of these? I say go knock on their door and introduce yourself. I bet they would be pleased to give you a tour of their new garden addition. ;-)
~ Sarah

Stephanie ~ Angelic Accents said...

Had to giggle at your daughter not wanting you to take a picture! My daughter (who is 31) is also a bit put-out by me at times doing just that very thing! You'd think they'd get used to us embarassing them eventually?!?!

Such a beautiful structure ~ Make friends with the owner, then share it with all of us! :0)

Big TX Hugs,
Angelic Accents

Sweet Cottage Dreams said...

What an amazing piece of architecture! WOW! I have never heard of a Folly and enjoyed the history lesson. What a fun building to have for a garden room.


Honey at 2805 said...

What a beautiful folly! Even better since it is an old one with it's own history. Makes you wonder what all has happened it it. I always imagaine stories to go along with vintage things and places.

alicia Hart said...

the chinese chippendale fence you've marked as Wakefield is actually in Salem, Massachusetts - it's on the property of the Peabody Essex Museum - it's a card house that was relocated onto their property