Friday, January 29, 2010

Savoir Faire

Jane Douglas grew up in Virginia, I in Atlanta. We both went to college in Virginia. At some point when you live in Virginia, the "Virginia sensibility” becomes a part of you. Virginians have a natural elegance, a certain savoir faire. In Virginia the landscape itself is breathtaking. I remember driving out to the Blue Ridge Parkway just to watch the sun set.

Jane Douglas and I both lived in Richmond ages ago when we were in our twenties. The city of Richmond itself is full of beautiful architecture and lovely neighborhoods. In fact, we are all drawn to beautiful things – whether it's a house, a piece of furniture, the leaves in the fall, fabric, a sunset, a poem or a painting.

We went on the Cathedral Tour of Homes last week and both of us were struck by one house in particular, which has a stunning living room. It is fun and beautiful and graceful all at the same time. I would say that is the style that we both are drawn too – a tamer version of Miles Redd and Kelly Wearstler. Traditional interiors with a twist, that aren't too serious. After all, we want to be able to live easily in our houses, even with children and dogs!

First two images courtesy of Elle Decor, third image courtesy of Southern Accents. First room is Miles Redd, second image is Elizabeth Martin, third is Barry Dixon.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

What makes a house a home?

In thinking about starting our interior design firm, I have been pondering what makes a house a home and not a set from a magazine shoot. What is it that gives a house warmth and personality and soul? Think about the feeling that you have when you come home to a house you love - the house evokes an emotional reaction in us, it touches us somewhere inside and we feel safe and can be refreshed.

This is the house that I, my mother and grandmother grew up in:

Just looking at the photo gives me a feeling of "home." This house is why I built a white clapboard house - it just feels like home to me. Each one of us has different things that evoke that feeling of home. The job of an interior designer is to help the client figure out what those things are and how they translate into design of the house (inside and out).

A house tells the story of a person's life, and describes the journey that one has traveled. At the beginning the house is fresh and often fairly empty, as time goes by the house develops a patina, and becomes full of the artifacts and treasures collected along the way. If you look closely, you can learn a lot about a person from his or her house - you can see what is meaningful to the homeowners and what their passions are.

In the next few posts, we will explore the things that Jane Douglas and I love about houses and interior design and we will show you some of things that we love about our own houses.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Here we go....

First post on our new blog....still figuring it all out.