“We’re kind of a speakeasy shop,” says Todd Carr, describing Hort & Pott, the store he co-owns with his partner Carter Harrington. It’s an apt description for their unique, appointment-only shopping destination located in Freehold, New York, about 20 minutes west of Hudson. Filled primarily with handmade and vintage finds for the home and garden, the botanically focused shop is currently dressed up for the holidays. “It’s more like an event when people come. We have candles lit in the shop, there’s music playing and incense burning, and we have the fires going,” Carr says.
Carr and Harrington came to retail after careers as a garden editor and an interior/window display designer, respectively, when they moved out of New York City in 2016. Hort & Pott’s current location is the latest iteration of a business that has evolved over several years. Hort & Pott, short for horticulture and pottery, began as a series of pop-ups and later a more permanent installation in a barn in Oak Hill, New York. The newest shop is situated in a 1920 boarding house on a former dairy farm that the couple purchased in early 2020 and are slowly fixing up.
Hort & Pott’s business model is to open for four consecutive weekends during the Hudson Valley’s peak tourism seasons; then Carr and Harrington close up shop for a few weeks before the next four-week stretch. This unusual calendar is necessary because so much of their inventory is handmade and vintage that they need time to both source and make the products, like the seasonal wreaths ($100 to $200) and ornaments ($10 to $30) currently for sale. “We shut down and basically create new pieces and new displays for the next openings,” says Carr. The couple also stock items from other Hudson Valley artisans, like Laurel and Ash maple syrup, which is made by friends.
For 2023, Hort & Pott has also opened an online shop, which Harrington is gradually building up. “It’s a distilled version of what we have in the shop,” he says. But for the full experience—which in December includes hot apple cider, a fire in the outdoor firepit, and more candles than you can count—you’ll want to book a time slot to see the shop in-person (this weekend is the last one they’ll be open in 2023). Reservations are booked online on the half hour. “It’s very loose, too. It’s just meant to kind of help space people out, so it doesn’t become too crazy in the shop,” says Carter.
If you miss your chance to snag a spot, they’ll be back in spring with potted bulbs and Easter decorations. In the meantime, here’s a tour of their store, decked out for the holidays.
Photography courtesy of Hort & Pott, unless otherwise noted.
For a tour of their former garden, see:
For other stores on our radar, see:
- Shopper’s Diary: Heavenly Scents and Forever Arrangements at The Quiet Botanist in Hudson, NY
- Shopper’s Diary: Cult Store Gardenheir in the Catskills