Tuesday, October 16, 2012

THE FARMER'S DOZEN

Akin to a baker's dozen, my Farmer's Dozen is a quantity of a dozen or so questions - a series of questions with fellow designers, authors, tastemakers, friends and Southerners alike.

I am so excited to share these with y'all- I'm answering my own first to kick off the series and look forward to posting my friends' responses. This is going to be fun!

Grab a Farmer's Dozen for your Southern fix - your dose of garden living, cooking, decorating, entertaining and all things this Farmer loves!

1. Where are you hailing from? 

My mail goes to Kathleen- my land is in Perry, my church is in Warner Robins and I grew up in Hawkinsville- all three are within a twenty mile radius of Kathleen. Each town claims me and I'm lucky to claim them.

2. If you were a color, what would you be and why? 

I've always thought green since it is so ubiquitous throughout nature but I honestly lean toward blue- like the blue you find in "blue and white" china. It's neutral and wonderful as an accent with so much including it's familial blue hues.
3. What are some of your favorite heirlooms? What do you love about them? How have you incorporated them into your decor?

Mimi's iron skillets- they are priceless and completely utilitarian. As for decor, I have some pieces (sideboard, chandelier, a portrait, silver) that were my great, great aunt's- as most Southerners do, we display and use these with reverence and a little guilt too if we do not! I love that these pieces were special to my family before I came along and they're special to me now as connections to my people and heritage. I use the sideboard and chandelier in my dining room.

4. What's your favorite room in your home? 

The dining room- it's where we sit, eat and laugh. I love dining rooms and love using them- even for a weeknight dinner- they make the meal special.



5. What's your favorite pattern? 

I love blue and white, period. Good old Blue Willow and Chinese export such as Canton are favorites. Plus, I'm spoiled- my aunt owns a dinnerware company and her Basket Felice pattern is a favorite too. Silver wise, I love Audobon- anyone who knows me knows I love birds and cows but the birds make a much more lovely and elegant silver pattern than the latter! When it comes to fabrics, I am a sucker for plaids and checks. And to reference birds again, Schumacher's "Quail Meadow" and Lee Jofa's "Tree of Life" are all time classic favorites.

6. Where is your favorite get-a-way? 

Cashiers NC- it's my home away from and I feel I can truly live in Cashiers. On the flip side, I love renting a Gulf beach condo and having my sisters and friends with me for a week to read and eat fried shrimp and just leave at the end of the week.

7. What's growing in your garden? 

Rosemary always- it's my favorite herb and greenery too for small bouquets. Since it's fall, my Mexican Sage (Salvia leucanthe) is riotous now and peppers seems to keep coming in with a zinnia or two. 


8. What was the last meal you made in your home? Who did you share it with? 

At my aunt's home in Cashiers which is like my home, I made a pasta with roasted heirloom tomatoes and sweet onions with a garlic infused olive oil; a salad with fresh mountain apples, honey whipped goat cheese and sweet-n-salty pecans; and for dessert I made a gingerbread with pumpkin ricotta mousse and whipped cream. We (my Maggies- sister and friend and my favorite brother-in-law Zach) sat out on the porch on a crisp fall evening and enjoyed every bite and second together! I also did shrimp and grits for fiends in Richmond VA recently and we had a ball!

9. What's your favorite garden flavor? How do you incorporate it into your favorite dishes?

 Rosemary. I love this herb because it is savory and divine and spectacularly amazing in sweet dishes too. Try some in an apple pie or ice cream and you'll be thrilled! I use it in tea too for a delightful kick.
 
10. Who inspires you? 

Different folks and strokes- the seasons do, designers in magazines, my family, mind-springs of inspiration jolt a creative bend and I just run with it. I have a tad bit of competitiveness in me so if I see someone do something I think is super, then I want to say, "Hey! Look what I can do!" and creative thereto.

11. What do you call your grandmother? Share a story about her... maybe something you've inherited from her. 

Mrs. Napp N. Granade, the former Sarah Ann Bates, is best known as Mimi. I, being the oldest grandchild, donned her with title because I wanted her to hold "me, me, hold me" and Mimi was coined. The spelling taken from the traditional nomenclature. She's taught me to cook and host and love whole heartedly. 

12. Favorite scent? 

Gardenia, tea olive, garden ginger and tea steeping.

13. What's on your coffee table right now? 

Stacks of magazines, a candle, a turtle shell and some garden flowers. The tv remote is probably buried under there somewhere. I tell my clients that their coffee tables are mini representations of there lives- thus mine touts as a creative vestige to design, nature, the seasons and the constant pursuit for the remote!

2 comments:

  1. Hi James, I love this post, both the personal insights and entertaining ideas. Just wonderful.
    All best,
    Phyllis

    ReplyDelete
  2. James, this is a great way to introduce yourself to your fans in depth. Looking forward to seeing you at Mistletoe Madness again this year!

    ReplyDelete

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