Creating eye-catching outdoor living spaces is a process of pure passion for watershaper Robert Bledsoe, who prides himself on distinctly bold, vivid projects rich with fine details and artistic touches. Working in the Kansas City area, he has built a reputation for high-end work that is always informed by unbridled enthusiasm and a freewheeling style tailored neatly to clients who have big expectations -- and budgets to match.
This article, originally published in July 2007, has been digitized for all readers. Click here to see the full text and enlarge the images to study the craftsmanship in detail.
Developing an Edge
Of all the tasks of pond installation, setting the edges is always among Eric Triplett's favorites. In this video, he discusses a wide range of available possibilities and demonstrates why the work takes concentration, dedication and, perhaps most of all, a certain artistic flair. [more]
A Windy City Wonder
The Chicago River is a marvel of hydrological engineering, writes Jim McCloskey, so it's appropriate that the fountain celebrating its history is something you should behold with your own eyes if your travels ever take you to the waterfront of this great American city. [more]
Perfecting a Quartz Pool Finish
When it comes to new quartz pool finishes, Kim Skinner has two big questions: Why challenge the fresh, vulnerable surface with acid? Why not use other, less aggressive methods to expose the colorful beauty of this premium exposed-aggregate look? [more]
Back to the Fair
Working on historic fountains calls for sensitivity to the original designers' intentions as well as the ability to integrate modern ideas, say Kerry Friedman and Mike Perkowski -- an outlook that guided their approach to two big projects in St. Louis' celebrated Forest Park. [more]
A time-honored, annual rite of spring has taken on a different sort of imporance for Jim McCloskey
this year as he prepares his backyard -- and especially its pool and spa -- for close, safe and nurturing encounters with his family's newest member. [more]
The Answer Is Found in the Feet!
Mystery Solved: Why Bees Are Attracted to Saltwater Pools
Neighbors can get touchy about what's happening with a nearby project, wrote Stephanie Rose in her column of May 2004. Click here to see how difficult the navigating can be when the waters get rough.
Now at WaterShapes.com . . .
Our all-digital archive is now complete! All columns and articles from the magazine are now easily searchable -- and the author index (click here) includes live links to every feature we ever printed! It's a treasure trove ready for easy exploration by using the MAGAZINE tab on our home page!
THE AQUATIC QUIZ
The Olsen Twins' Posh New Boutique Includes an Outdoor Swimming Pool
Many water-related stories have been in the news of late -- including a report connected to the three questions below.
1. Former child stars, now business moguls, Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen -- whose combined wealth is reported to be approximately $300 million -- have opened a high-end boutique that spotlights their own fashion brand. The store and brand are both called The Row. An article on Web site dailymail.co.uk notes that the twins' new enterprise boasts an outdoor swimming pool so customers can take a refreshing dip while shopping. Where is The Row located?
a. Los Angeles b. Chicago c. New York d. London
2. Curbed.com reports that in one Asian city, an empty, 1970s indoor swimming pool has been converted into a fancy boutique named Pool Ayoma -- where shoppers stroll around on a glass floor suspended over the pool's worn bottom. In what city was a decades-old vacant pool transformed into a boutique?
a. Beijing b. Seoul c. Tokyo d. Manila
3. According to torquayheraldexpress.co.uk, panic and chaos ensued when a wild critter somehow wound up in a public swimming pool in England. When a swimmer gallantly tried to save the animal from drowning by flinging it out of the water, he was rewarded with a bite to one of his fingers. What critter was it?
WaterShapes World (blog)
Sorting through his understanding of the dynamics of water-related businesses, Jim McCloskey recalls the industry's last big generational transition -- and holds out some hope that the one we're experiencing now will take a somewhat easier path than the previous one.