Garden gnomes are whimsical creatures with origins tracing back to the early nineteenth century. Some of the most popular terra cotta gnomes were created by Phillip Griebel, in the town of Graefenroda, Germany, and his representation of these gnomes remains popular even to this day. Whether you prefer the older style of Griebel’s gnomes, or some of the more modern ones now manufactured, creating a village for your gnomes isn’t hard, but there are some things you may want to consider.
Decide how much space you want to use in your garden for your gnome village. If you have a large collection of gnomes and a big garden, you may want to spread the village throughout the garden to keep the area from looking too cluttered. If you are just starting your collection, keep the village small until you can add more gnomes to give the scene a bigger impact.
Use small stacks of large rocks (10 to 12 inches long) as a backdrop for your village in between the flower beds or under bushes. Group similar themed gnomes, such as mining, gardening, or butterfly-gazing gnomes together near these rocks to divide your village into different areas of town.
Buy accessories to add balance to your village. Miniature arbors, bridges, and fences are perfect for smaller gnomes in box gardens. Resin-made mushrooms and birdhouse stones can help create a village look for larger gnomes.
Do not make your village scene too cluttered. Moderation is the key in creating a magical moment for the unsuspecting garden visitor. Too much going on in one place detracts from what the visitor is looking at.
If you have different types (made by different companies) of gnomes, place each type in their own part of the village for more fluid viewing. Seeing an antique gnome next to a more modern lawn gnome is distracting and makes the village scene look “choppy” and disorganized.
Things You Will Need
- If decorating a large area, but you don't have a large collection of gnomes to start your village with, you may wish to consider adding other magical creatures, such as fairies or pixies to fill in some of the space. Gazing balls, and stepping stones for leading visitors through your village, can help give gardens a uniform appearance and is also beneficial in keeping flowers from getting stepped on.