Talking Shop: Lisa Lockhart from Garden Objects
Any keen gardener will understand the triumph of discovering a good garden tool. Something that’s uncomplicated, hard-wearing, effective. Bonus points if it looks nice too. It’s like a new recipe or an addictive tv series – you’re soon reaching for the phone to boast to all of your friends about the latest find that is changing your life! At Garden Objects, an online garden wares store owned by Lisa and Jared Lockhart, you’ll find a collection of durable tools and accessories so sleek and sexy you’ll want to bring them inside each day to display on your mantle.
Relocating a few years ago from London to Jared’s home, New Zealand, the pair began a new life amongst the evocative Auckland landscape with their little girl, Wren. Lisa, a retail lecturer and Jared, a landscape designer, were inspired by their love of gardening with beautiful, well-designed, long lasting products to create Garden Objects, a home for handsome, functional tools and accessories from all over the world.
We caught up with Lisa recently to find out about her kiwi life, family and her ideas on home. She also shared with us some of the gorgeous new product images from Garden Objects – are they garden wares or sculptures? We’re still not sure.
Please tell us about yourself, and your life with plants. I’ve always loved the garden and have been drawn to plants my entire life. I think it must have started when, as a child, I was allocated a small section of the garden to plant. It was a rockery and I planted it with lots of delicate alpines. Overtime I grew bolder and ended up taking over the family garden. At 16 I had a part time job in a local garden center and that just reinforced my love of plants.
Could you also please tell us about your store, Garden Objects. Garden Objects is a shop for people who love the garden. It is a collection of some of the best garden wares from around the world, focusing on functionality, design and craftsmanship.
What does home mean to you? Warmth, love and shelter.
How has this idea changed since you were a child? Now I’m older I respect it more and don’t take it for granted.
What draws you to nature?
I’m very curious, I like to know how things work, and nature is a good outlet for this. There is so much out there to explore and learn – it is the ultimate freedom.
How would you describe your style? Simple, honest and functional. When we moved to NZ we had to leave a lot of superfluous things behind, we were brutal, only bringing with us the things we truly loved and used. We’re instinctively drawn to mid-century furniture but overall I’d say our style is eclectic and comfortable.
How does the New Zealand landscape feed your creative spirit? I’m still relatively new to NZ so I’m constantly being surprised by the landscape. Its vastness and drama are completely captivating.
What does a typical day look like for you? My average day is spent raising our little girl Wren. We live by the beach so we spend a lot of our time exploring the shoreline. Wren is very active and keeps me busy. I love to cook and every evening we eat dinner together as a family – this is one of my favourite parts of the day and something I hope we can always enjoy together.
After Wren goes to bed I work on Garden Objects: packing orders, updating the website, emailing and general admin etc.
Your partner, Jared Lockhart, designs gorgeous landscapes across the country. Do you find yourselves feeding off each other’s creative energy? Always, we’re constantly talking about gardens and design. We’re always very aware of what each other is working on and take a great interest in each other projects.
We have always loved sharing our ideas with each other and it is through this that Garden Objects was created.”
What is your garden like at home? It’s tiny and ever evolving – it is mainly Jared’s test garden for his landscape projects.
For people wanting to capture your simple, honest aesthetic, what would be your biggest style tip? Only buy things you’ll love to use – an uncomfortable chair is redundant.
If you could make a home with three objects, what would they be? My family, a stove and a comfy place to sit or sleep.
What is your favourite season? I must confess to missing the cold crisp autumnal mornings of England and the bright promise that comes with spring. Especially the prospects that brings for planting – I will always be sad that I can’t grow a field of peonies in Auckland.
Out of all the places I’ve ever visited, like so many others who have also been, New Zealand remains one of my favourites. What do you think it is about this country that speaks to so many people who visit?
I had been in NZ for less than 72 hours when I decided that I wanted to move here and make it home.”
I’m not sure exactly what it was but I felt an overwhelming desire to call it home.
What’s your insider tip for the true New Zealand experience? Marry a Kiwi! No in all honesty I think you can only have the true NZ experience with the help of a New Zealander, be that friend or tour guide. They’ll know all the best places and how to pronounce them.
What does the future hold for you and Garden Objects? More of the same. We have been overwhelmed by the support we have received and we’d like to continue to grow the business. We really enjoy sourcing new products and we have a long list of pieces we’d like to introduce.
If you were a plant, what would you be? This is very difficult…I’m either an English Rose, an Oak or a giant Topiary Cat!