2820 Thornfield Rd. Winston Salem, N.C.27106
We have loved our house on Thornfield Road for the last 14 years. It was conceived by a Winston-Salem couple who owned a francophile boutique and traveled extensively through France--shopping for their store and home. Collaborating with the Wilmington, N.C. architect Henry Johnston the team gathered artisans, Mennonite craftsman, custom millworkers, old wood resources for floors, beams and paneling to create an authentic, charming French farmhouse aesthetic. The house was finished in 1988, so it is a modern house with old world sensibilities.
Anvil studio artist Bill Brown, created these beautiful roof supports at the front door.
French country houses are designed to flow easily to the out of doors. French doors instead of windows compel you to wander out . Breezeways and pergolas provide shelter, allowing you to watch the moon rise, thunder strike, rain pelt or just watch fireflies in June.
Our Lady Banks Rose in the courtyard is a marvel!! This was the best year ever for our favorite spectacle. It gets's knocked back a bit in a tough winter but is always a welcome portent of spring.
The front courtyard is also the perfect spot for tent parties. Our guests park up at Reynolda Presbyterian Church and Summit School and walk down. In case of rain, we offer the local teenager valet service.
Our kitchen window box has been an endless source of amusement for me....
This incarnation is my favorite, inspired by Ed Hollander's
personal garden in Sag Harbor. He brilliantly planted tall Oriental Lilies in the roots of their Hydrangea bushes and they magically dangle over the flowers acting simultaneously as support. It's a stunner and this is my mini version.
A New Dawn Rose from the back of the house was transplanted to the front courtyard. A great adage to remember for all climbers is: "The first year they sleep, the second year they creep and the third year they leap. This was a mature climber so it immediately embraced the space.
One of my favorite diversions is the container garden in the Spring. I came up with this Cleome/Plumbago combo and it is my favorite. As the heat goes on, they just get more wild and woolly, which is always gratifying to the gardener. The Hydrangeas through the door came in small pots from the grocery store. I enjoy them indoors, but they thrive and grow in the garden, when they've stopped blooming.
One year, my neighbor's tulip Magnolia was ripped to shreds and laying on the ground, so in one of my very early blog posts, I entertained myself with this "Windfall." Walking into the house and changing seasons we are working on a Winter Wonderland fabulous dinner.
We like the Christmas Tree in the dining room and open our gifts over breakfast strata on Christmas morning.
The entry hall has been a great overflow dining spot. We have seated as many as 22 people in dining room and the adjacent hall.
I would say our happiest times start in the kitchen and end in all the different areas we have decked out for our feasts.
Anyone who follows me on Instagram or FaceBook knows that I am the undisputed Queen of the antipasto platter.
The wonderful courtyard off of the family room is a frequent gathering spot.
The terrace off of the living room/dining room areas draws guests out for conversations. I have occasionally set up for dining out there as well, but notice that guests love an almost desperate proximity to the kitchen. In winter, it is a great spot to gather with a blazing fire.
There are also areas in this house, where believe it or not, are not food locations.
The family room is open to kitchen area, and I admit we eat there too.
The house was designed with 3 master bedrooms, one down and two upstairs. The fourth bedroom has built in shelves and a desk area as an optional office, but we have used it as a 4th bedroom, as have the preceding owners. There is a man's paneled office downstairs as well with dressing and bath areas adjacent. There are 3 separate energy zones, which make the house energy efficient. When I am the only one home, I turn down the living, dining, halls, and upstairs bedrooms.
My bedroom, which is the main floor master opens on to the dining room/living room terrace and its own secret garden on the opposite side. It is my recharging station. I am sure you are wondering......why this very long post, which could have been broken into at least3?. I have decided to move and am selling the house. Friends have asked me to post images, so they can pass it on to their friends. Also, we have had so many beautiful occasions here, I wanted to keep a memento of all the wonderful times the girls and I have had with our relatives and great friends. If you live in the greater Winston-Salem, Greensboro or High Point area, please share this with your friends.
Price available on request.
Stanley Furniture Redefined
With High Point Market only a couple of months away, we wanted to share the showroom surprise of April 2014. We were dubious when Stanley Furniture told us a couple of years ago that they were moving to the Hamilton District in High Point, literally the 5th Avenue for wholesale furniture shopping. Completely skeptical, I remember saying to my co-worker, Christine, "Just because they're moving to the high end neighborhood, doesn't mean the furniture is going to get any better." Well, I couldn't have been more delightedly wrong! Stanley has completely pulled off a strong transition to the top tier with accessible price points, better design, scale, finishing and construction. Some of their pieces are absolutely beautiful. Running into Tori Mellott of Traditional Home Magazine at the bus station in front of the IHFC, I asked her what she thought was the most exciting story at market and without hesitation she replied: "Stanley Furniture." We were nodding, saying: "Right?" We weren't losing our Mojo!! So.... watch the video below to see this transformation in their gorgeous new Showroom at 200 N. Hamilton.
With three girls in their 20's we have been treated to some spectacular wedding celebrations. Here are some of the most unique ideas, spectacular florals and special moments from weddings past and present.
Make it personal! This family used their lovingly accumulated art collection for the reception tent.
Narrow tables allow guests to include more than two people in the conversation. Round tables can make for some awkward moments if both of your dinner partners are conversing with the guests adjacent to them away from you.
In large tents, create dimension by hanging votives and flowers at different heights. This wedding designer cleverly incorporated lampshades into the lighting scheme and the multiple heights from table to ceiling create intimacy.
Create other spaces outside of the crowded party area: Flowers and votives hanging from the trees at varying levels next to the party space invite intimate conversations away from the noise.
Punctuation in scale creates rhythm, glamour and interest.
If the dinner is a formal seated affair, unique displays for seating assignments add that personal signature all weddings large and small should exude.
A perfect example of dimension in a large tent.
Also, this bride who is an interior designer did not neglect the naked band space creating a focal point and distracting from the less attractive assemblage of microphones, instruments and music stands.
Insert a little humor into the mix. The groom's cake is the perfect opportunity for this. Hint: The groom is not fat!!
This clever bride created a surprise for her new husband: A cake with his favorite books.
Loyal readers have seen this image before, but it is one of my favorite touches. Many weddings these days have a special monogram incorporating the last initials of the bride and groom's last names. In this case the groomsmen wore matching slippers with bespoke embroidery following the pattern of the boxwood maze at the bride's Grandmother's farm where the wedding festivities were celebrated. Dudes, take note: Real men can wear festive foot wear.
Watch the Royals, they hire the most brilliant stylists. A bride has her back turned to an entire congregation during the wedding ceremony, so keep some interest in the rear. This bride was channeling Kate Middleton's simple and elegant flowers in her hair. Sometimes you don't want the traditional wreath.
Sense of Place: When planning your wedding, embrace your location.
Love the attention to detail here!!
But... the most important detail is....
That we all feel the love!!
Happy Wedding Day to all upcoming brides and grooms!!
Need wedding gifts?
We have wonderful lighting, mirrors and wall art and more
for new couples!
High Point Market Highlights April 2014
After five straight days of hoofing it through market, I hopped a bus to Lexington, Kentucky with the High Point Garden Club and the Bienenstock Furniture Library
. We visited beautiful historic houses not to mention Keeneland
. More about that later... meanwhile let me send you a round-up on High Point highlights
from the April 2014 market. Below we have the ever gracious and talented Mariette Himes Gomez
of Hickory Chair
showing her classic, clean and completely elegant line of furniture. We just cannot help leading with one of our favorite furniture companies in the world!!
Mariette's luxurious Syrie Maugham sofa
recalls the elegance of the '30's and 40's with a silk satin fabric articulating the luxurious glamor of the era.
You need to wear this on the sofa!
Mariette's Porter Divan
dons a creamy leather with impressive trapunto
detailing on the back illustrating the virtuoso workmanship executed by the artisans of Hickory Chair
uses her showroom as a design laboratory. Absolutely no designer at market shows such range in style, but the extra push creates great anticipation from High Point devotees. It trains our eye to visualize the elasticity of her line in a seemingly unlimited parade of genres.
We were all in awe of the fact that Alexa
created all of the collages and paintings in her showrooms. This year her inspiration came from a book that she read as a young girl in her father's library: La Réussité de la Decoration Française, vols. I & II. Channeling the unmistakeably chic Gallic aesthetic, these rooms speak of old world luxury layered and collected from past generations through the present. Suzanne Kasler
revived these fabulous DeGournay
panels from years ago. Known for her serene and feminine spaces, Suzanne adds exquisite dressmaker tapes, nail heads creating rooms that are livable, finished and fresh.
French inspired twin beds
kick into the millennium with a slightly elongated headboard. A bold Phillip Jeffries painted graphic wall covering, hung on a single surface, energizes the space without dominating the scene. Bright tribal patterns with a casual striped area rug balance elegance with a low-key interesting collected sophisticated vibe. Suzanne's interiors are like meeting a famous person and discovering that they are highly companionable!
We love Chelsea House
as their line ticks all our requirements for our online store and residential clientele. Great Prices--check...Great Workmanship--check....Great style--check.....Multi-tasking transitional pieces--check. Lisa Kahn
is the guiding light of design in this atelier and we hit it for several days at market. If you don't go, its like going to New York and eating fast food--you'd be missing the boat!
There's a small new crop of 19th century reproduction casino chairs
popping up in various showrooms. C.R. Laine's
version has the best leather, scale and price of the few I'm grooving on lately. I start to think that I am crazy, but Shay Geyer did Style Spot it, so another set of eyes share my quirks. May I add that it is wonderfully comfortable as a dining, desk or occasional chair.
All of design and media land came out for the Mary McDonald
launch at Chaddock
. It was fabulous, and I hadn't been in Chaddock since they showed their fare up on Hamilton. Things have changed... I can only identify Newell Turner
of Hearst and Mary McDonald in this image, but it was slammed with "The Talent." We loved seeing our old friend Jay Reardon
, previously of Hickory Chair and current chairman of the executive committee at Chaddock also sitting on their board. Margaret Russel and her stable of editors was there as well as the Traditional Home girls.
I was excited to meet David Easton and view his collection. He's a charmer that one, but in my humble opinion his work is in The Great Tradition, confirmed by the fact that he knelt down and kissed my hand. I was blushing.....
Come by and
We are starting to load new market finds!!
Scroll Down to see our videos from last market!
Getting Ready for Market -- All Eyes on Modern History
As we are getting ready for The High Point Furniture Market
, we wanted to share our interview with Michael Beaver, the hands on owner of Modern History
. He is a second generation furniture manufacturer with a trained eye for style, finish and scale. We follow the history of these exquisite pieces as they travel from the flea market in Paris, overseas to their artisanal factories where meticulous detail is executed. Within the vast array of product offerings at market, this line is exemplary on every level.
Visit The Modern History Showroom
430 N. Wrenn Street
Contact Karen Kepley
Liz at Dovecote Decor
for an appointment