Before opening her neighborhood garden store, former teacher Friederike Joppen noticed that Amsterdam is full of tiny balconies, mostly woefully underused. “About 70 percent of the houses in Amsterdam have a small balcony,” she says, but most are “neglected places—half storage, half playground for pigeons.”
After polling her neighbors and learning they struggled to find anything that would fit on their tiny balconies, she opened De Balkonie—a garden store focusing on small spaces only, the first of its kind in the Netherlands.
De Balkonie has something for everyone: miniature cacti, tropical hanging plants, lounge furniture, and more, all for use in tight spaces. The store also offers balcony design services and in-store classes and events. “I believe a private spot of green in the city will make people happy,” says Joppen. There’s even something for the pigeons:
Above: The interiors were designed by Amsterdam-based Studio Mokum. The designers painted vintage utility shelves in light green to stand out against the pale gray walls.
The shop is filled with an array of small plants and garden accessories, including bird houses, tabletop grills, and outdoor rugs.
Above: De Balkonie sets up small-space vignettes throughout the store and outdoors to help shoppers visualize possibilities for their balconies.
For more, browse our recent Shopper’s Diary posts and visit a Dutch cabin in Modern Family: A Tiny Garden Getaway in the Netherlands.