The Holiday/Winter Preview Party


Detroit Garden Works throws one evening party a year.  It is, in part, a thank you for all of the gardeners that have or have a mind to shop with us.  It is, in part, the opening night of our winter and holiday season. It is, in every regard, a party.  We serve great things to eat, and a variety of things to drink.  We have spent weeks constructing the light sculptures that Rob designs.  One of them in a pot, or hung from a tree, or sunk into the ground lights up the night that is our gardening future.  Is there more to see?  Yes.

We have spent weeks tearing apart the remains of our summer garden vignettes to make way for the winter season to come.  It could be 10 years ago that we began stocking materials for gardeners-for winter containers.  What seems so logical now is what was uncharted territory then.  We live in a gardening zone with a fourth quarter than can be really daunting.  Gray skies give way to the dark-early.  Morning skies are gray and dark-late.  The landscape goes dormant.Why not offer materials for winter container plantings?  Some garden based materials to make the winter a little easier to bear?  Materials for winter containers include fresh cut twigs and substantially hefty and lengthy greens.  Preserved natural materials and remarkably weather resistant and visually compelling picks.  Landscape lighting-how do you plan to handle the need for light in the dark season?


The big idea is that the love of the garden can be represented in a celebratory way over the winter.  The big sleep freeze that will chill every plant in my landscape into utter dormancy does not apply to me.  People do not go dormant.  I will experience everything that the winter has to offer, every day, day after day.  Though the winter is no longer than all of the other seasons, it can feel longer.  I have options about how I want to live through that time.  I can construct containers at my front and back door with cut materials from the garden.  I can light those pots in such a way that they light my way. I can festoon this and decorate that-outdoors.  It is a choice- to make the winter landscape cozy and inviting.


The shop is not quite ready for our opening tomorrow night.  It takes a lot of time and thought to create an atmosphere that engages gardeners when the garden has gone quiet.  Rob has done a perfect job of sourcing great materials and lighting, and arranging for them to be delivered in time for our opening night.  We shop together for the following holiday in January, while the season is still fresh in our minds.  Our entire company numbering 21 people have worked long and hard to make the transition from the joy that is the summer landscape, to the steadfast belief that even the winter season is worth treasuring.


Should you decide to attend our once a year night time winter season opening on Thursday night, we will park your car, provide you with something good to eat and fun to drink.  We leave the rest up to you.  How the materials we have chosen might inspire or intrigue-that’s the fun of it.  We like throwing this yearly party.  The preview party and holiday open house which runs through Sunday is a lot about giving thanks to all of the gardeners that have enabled Detroit Garden Works to stay viable for going on 18 years.  It is just as much about a community of gardening people determined to make a stand-for a beautiful winter.


I so look forward to this night every year.  We try our best to make the anticipation of winter an extraordinary experience.  Interested?  Our winter/holiday open house runs from Thursday night the 7th from 5 to whenever.  Yes, we provide valet parking for our Thursday night party.  As for the weekend, Friday through Sunday, 9 to 5 all three days, we have a coffee pot fueled by Starbucks coffee, and plenty of treats.  Our idea is to make the prospect of the winter season seem all good.

battery-operated-lights.jpgRob does plenty to make this season happen.  He sees that we have fresh cut twigs, fresh cut greens-and spectacular winter lighting.  He is the most creative person it has ever been my pleasure to know.  He is an ace in the hole-should you need help designing or constructing a winter display.

ribbon-and-twine.jpgWe do try to cover all the bases.  Winter containers.  Holiday decor.  Parties and events.  Wrapping and packaging.  Gifts for gardeners. Fresh cut twigs and greens.  Lighting.  Design.  Coaching.  Holiday decorating both inside and out.  Give us a call.


Tomorrow night, I hope to make the experience worthy of attention.  Everyone I know has a busy life.  I would not be writing this post, but for the fact that I believe a visit to our shop would be well worth your while.

holiday-tree.jpgWe view the winter and holiday season from a particular point of view.  The garden funds and fuels all of our efforts.  Every move we make is with the landscape in mind.  Winter gardening-oh yes.  The holidays?  Any cause for celebration is a cause we support.

light-rings.jpgIf you have a mind, pay us a visit.  We promise to make your winter season a season in which you can survive better.  Have the prospect of winter blues dead ahead?  You have lots of company.  You and all of your company-we hope to help make your winter a better winter.




  1. I so wish I lived aywhere near your wonderful shop!
    I am inspired by your ideas and designs, and may try to get a bit of that spark in my own gardens, here in upstate New York.
    Thanks so much for your blog.

  2. Looks fabulous! hope its a fantastic night!

  3. Wish I was close enough to join the bringing in of the Festive season. Your place looks lovely
    and festive! Have a great season.

  4. absolutely beautiful décor and very inspiring…I wish I lived close enough to attend…but I am on the west coast….

  5. How I wish I could be there! Your photos do more to get me in the spirit than the first spatter of snow….

  6. Oh, i love the 100 white puppies (or bear cubs ?) !! They are so cute.

  7. Yes, I too wish I could attend but I am in St. Louis, MO. I wonder if I sent a pic of my front entrance, Rob could give me some ideas about decor and lighting 🙂 That would be awesome!

    • Deborah Silver says

      Dear Karen, we can’t do that, but there are lots of posts on Dirt Simple that address this topic. Thanks, Deborah

  8. Sorry to miss what looks like a great party in the making. I’m enjoying the gray skies of Paris.

    • Deborah Silver says

      Its sunny, crisp and very fall like here-perfect for a party. But that Paris gray is great for romance! Hope you are having a great time!

  9. I fell in love with your winter containers last year when I spotted them on pinterest and signed up for your newsletters-I’ve been doing winter containers here (South of Cleveland, Ohio) for health care facilities and private homes since 2006-I’m always looking for great ideas-I love yours. Good luck with your party tonight-maybe next year I can make it a part of my holiday plans

  10. Carol Passavant says

    Can’t wait to see more pictures! Beautiful so far.

  11. Wish I could be with you. North Carolina a bit far to drop in. But, I copy/pasted to my darling daughter in law in Rochester Hills who has a Mom visiting for Thanksgivng. Hopefully, they can come and enjoy. Best wishes

  12. Tracey Childs says

    I love the hola hoop display its do different I would like to try that for the 25th anniversary of my yr leaving school party. Only what did u use to secure them to the ceiling

    • Deborah Silver says

      Dear Tracey, our light rings are made of steel. The steel has a small lip on each side. This creates a channel that keeps the light bulbs facing out, and the cords in place. Someone who reposted our picture to pinterest suggested it could be done with hula hoops-which would be a different look. We use jute to disguise the light cord. best, Deborah

  13. Where can one purchase the steel circle?

  14. Did you make the steel ring or you bought it someplace. Can you pls let me know where I can get one. Thanks

  15. Ayesha Sajid says

    Amazing Decor Ideas!

  16. Where do you get the metal rings? I decorate a resort in northern Michigan.
    I want to do the rings with light. I love that look!

Leave a Comment