Belle Decor

Committed to Memory: Southern Engraving Traditions

By Haskell HarrisBelle DecorApril 6, 2015

Chances are good that if you look closely at any Southerner’s sideboard, bookshelf, or jewelry box, you’ll find an engraved item on display. The pieces are nostalgic, marking life events and family traditions. But they’re also refreshing in the digital age—a memory made permanent with a visit to a jewelry shop that’s likely always been the go-to for a particular Southern city or town. (Here in Charleston, there are many, but Corkie Harden at Croghan’s Jewelry is legendary.) And behind those delicate etchings, you’ll also find something else that's very Southern: A good story. In that spirit, we asked several Garden & Gun staffers to share the ones behind their favorite engraved pieces.

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The Southern Cupboard: Vintage Deviled Egg Plates

By Haskell HarrisBelle DecorMarch 30, 2015

Deviled egg plates, like hardworking biscuit cutters or tall, skinny sweet tea spoons, are on the short list of purposeful epicurean items every Southerner should own. And that’s likely because they come in handy often, especially this time of year, a season in the South that calls for alfresco entertaining of every sort, from Easter picnics to porch parties. Sure, there are plenty of new versions out there, but some of the most compelling are vintage. Bonus: These older options are affordable on sites such as Etsy and are as fun to collect as they are to give as thoughtful wedding and housewarming gifts.

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Go Green: Dodie Thayer Lettuce Ware for Tory Burch

By Haskell HarrisBelle DecorMarch 17, 2015

Spring 2015 is off to a fresh—and very green—start with the highly anticipated release of the collaboration between designer Tory Burch and legendary Palm Beach ceramicist Dodie Thayer. Thayer, a self-taught artist who began selling her lettuce ware pieces in the 1960s, is one of the most highly collected artisans in America, thanks to patronage from the stylish likes of Brook Astor, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, and C.Z. Guest.

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The Global South: The Women Behind Dira

By Haskell HarrisBelle DecorMarch 16, 2015

Garden & Gun champions Southern artisans and entrepreneurial efforts here in Dixie, but we also look to Southerners who support the ideals of craftsmanship outside the South, too. Which makes sense, considering that our region wouldn’t be the wonderful, exotic melting pot that is today without the influence of cultures from around the world.

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Bright Spot: A Sneak Peek of Susan Hable's New Book on Color

By Haskell HarrisBelle DecorMarch 9, 2015

From Thomas Jefferson’s bright yellow dining room at Monticello to Lily Pulitzer’s first sunny shift dresses in Palm Beach, confidence with color comes naturally to Southerners.

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About Face: Emily Leonard Portraits

By Haskell HarrisBelle DecorMarch 2, 2015

Portraiture has always held an important place in Southern culture. The carefully rendered images serve as much more than decoration; they are records of family, history, and the personalities that have shaped generations. And Nashville’s Emily Leonard is proving that the familiar, high-traditional oil portrait isn’t the only way to document a familiar face.

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Mod Potters: The Next Generation of Southern Ceramics

By Haskell HarrisBelle DecorFebruary 23, 2015

The South has long been home to celebrated ceramic artisans, from the late Mississippi legend Peter Anderson to North Carolina pottery star Matt Jones.

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Wearable Works of Art

By Haskell HarrisBelle DecorFebruary 18, 2015

Thanks to advances in digital technology, more and more artists are translating their paintings, watercolors, ink drawings, and more into artful prints for fabrics—from textiles for upholstery to that Southern wardrobe staple: the silk scarf.

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A G&G Jewelry Trunk Show

By Haskell HarrisBelle DecorFebruary 10, 2015

It’s no surprise that trunk shows have always been popular in the South—the idea revolves around gathering a group of friends for a party and celebrating one-of-a-kind style, after all. In the past, though, style often traveled South by way of the trunk show, with companies such as Brooks Brothers and Parisian linen label D. Porthault taking their goods on the road below the Mason-Dixon line. Now, in the wake of the pop-up shop craze, trunk shows are more popular than ever, offering a vehicle for young Southern designers and businesses to export Southern style.

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Style Indoors and Out in Music City

By Haskell HarrisBelle DecorFebruary 6, 2015

Style in the South is a melting pot from traditional to modern. But a common theme persists amid that diversity: an appreciation of beautiful things with history, whether it's the lineage of a Georgian secretary to the story behind a pedigree Swedish modern leather sofa from the sixties. And there is perhaps no better example of the South’s enthusiastic love of design in all its forms than Nashville’s annual Antiques & Garden Show.

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