Charleston Fall Home Show

As the Charleston temperature and humidity have dipped ever so slightly these last few days, our thoughts turn to the cooler months ahead.  It is this time of year that I encourage my clients to embark on their design projects in order to have them complete as the holiday season ramps up.

Just in time, the Charleston Fall Home Show makes it annual appearance at the newly refurbished Gaillard Center in downtown Charleston.

Charleston Fall Home Show

Presented by my friends at Charleston Home + Design Magazine, it is chock full of not to miss events and exhibits.

Charleston Home and Design Magazine

Highlights from the show to include:

Antique appraisals by South Carolina native Miller Gaffney and star of TV’s Art Breakers

Art Breakers

A chance to win a $15,000 Dream Backyard Makeover

An architects symposium featuring presentations of homes along with insights into each project

And best of all FREE Interior Design Consultations.

Interior Design Consultations Charleston Home Show J Rhodes Interior Design

Come see me between 2 and 4 on Friday at the Gaillard!

Mr. H says: Never neglect and opportunity for improvement-Enjoy!


40 years of Charleston’s Spoleto Festival USA

The Spoleto Festival USA opens its 40th season today, and the schedule of events promises to be a celebration of the spirit of Charleston, South Carolina.  This year’s itinerary includes Spoleto’s first production of the opera “Porgy and Bess“.  Created by George Gershwin, Dubose and Dorothy Heyward, and Ira Gershwinwhich in 1934, is set in Charleston.  A number of performances also pay tribute to the memory of the victims of the shootings at Emanuel AME Church on June 17, 2015.

Porgy and Bess costumes

The Spoleto Festival USA was conceived by Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Gian Carlo Menotti, who sought to establish a counterpart to the Festival dei Due Mondi (The Festival of Two Worlds) in Spoleto, Italy.  Championed by then Mayor Joe Riley, the Spoleto Festival USA held its inaugural year in 1977.

Spoleto Poster 1977 Christan Thee

Each year a celebration poster is created by a living artist.  This years poster, by Jonathan Green, Harvest Gathering is a vibrant image celebrating Gullah culture.
2016 Spoleto Festival poster Jonathan Green

Check out all the past poster images from the last 40 years at the Spoleto Festival website

1985 Spoleto poster Jasper Johns

While former mayor Joseph P. Riley Jr. is not presiding over this years opening events, his Spoleto dedicated legacy to the festival for the last four decades will be celebrated at the 40th Season Celebration Concert.  The concert will be held in the newly renovated Gaillard Center and will be conducted by former Festival Music Director Steven Sloane, with Riley narrating.

Gillard Performance Center

Mr. H says: Life is festival only to the wise-Enjoy!

The Inn at Middleton Place-Charleston, SC

I was fortunate to play tourist in my own town this week at the beautiful 18th century Middleton Place plantation.  Listed as a National Historic Landmark, it is home to America’s oldest landscaped gardens.

Middleton Place terrace garden Middleton Place

We took advantage of the weekly Spring wine stroll along with dinner at the restaurant and an overnight stay at the Inn.

While the gardens are the main attraction, The Inn at Middleton Place, is an extraordinary destination in its own right.  Secluded among tall pines and live oaks along the banks of the Ashley River, the 55 rooms are just a short walk away from the plantation grounds.The Inn at Middleton Place Lodge

Built in 1987, the Inn was designed by W.G. Clark and Charles Menefee of Charleston, SC.  Lead architect W.G. Clark eschewed the typical Southern vernacular of white columns and wide porches with rocking chairs.  Instead, the team channeled the architectural ruins that are found throughout the Low Country, emerging out of abandoned fields and ancient forests.  Once completed, The Inn at Middleton Place was recognized for its outstanding concept and design by the American Institute for Architecture (AIA) with its Honor Award, the profession’s highest accolade for individual buildings by American architects.

The Inn at Middleton Place

The rooms interiors, while spare, boast floor to ceiling windows, cypress paneling and wood burning fireplacesThe Inn at Middleton Place interior

The large bathrooms feature marble floors, innovative cypress storage and a two person tiled roman soaking tub.

The Inn at Middleton Place bath

Mr. H says: History never looks like history when you are living through it-Enjoy!

Reclaimed DesignWorks Charleston, SC

Reclaimed DesignWorks, recently held a holiday drop in their Charleston, SC showroom on East Bay Street.  This national company purveys “reclaimed” building materials found in old buildings across the United States and Canada.

Reclaimed DesignWorks saw display

Old-growth, antique wood is more dense and structurally stable than newly-harvested wood. Reclaimed DesignWorks recovers their wood from dismantled barns, farm houses and factories that have outgrown their usefulness.  These buildings are usually beyond repair and may have been abandoned.  Flooring, granary boards, roof rafters, floor joists and structural beams are some of the parts of a structure that their flooring is produced from.

Reclaimed DesignWorks Charleston showroom

In the Reclaimed DesignWorks Charleston showroom, reclaimed flooring and other antique building products are displayed in a finished state.

Reclaimed DesignWorks showroom

With additional showrooms in Denver, CO,  Austin, TX, Dallas, TX, and Nashville, TN, Reclaimed DesignWorks boasts an impressive client list including Starbucks, Whole Foods, Polo Ralph Lauren and Embassy Suites.  Locally their beautiful products can be in enjoyed at Prohibition, Crust Wood Fired Pizza and The Collective Coffee Company.

Wood Samples Reclaimed DesignWorks

Mr. H says: Something old can be timeless-Enjoy!

Charleston’s Emanuel AME Church

Through the years, the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church has endured slavery, laws to prevent members from worshiping, and the destruction by white mobs.   It appears that nothing can keep this congregation from persevering as it opened it’s doors on Sunday after last weeks shooting deaths of nine members.

Founded in 1816, by abolitionist minister Morris Brown, it is the oldest AME church in the South. Known as “Mother Emanuel”, the wooden 1872 two-story church that was built on the present site on the north side of Calhoun Street.  After the Civil War, blacks were not welcome on the south side of what was then known as Boundary Street when the church was built.  That structure was destroyed in 1886 by the devastating Charleston earthquake.

1872 Wood Mother Emanuel Church

The present day Gothic Revival-style church with its impressive steeple was completed in 1891. With seats for 2,500, it is the largest African-American church in Charleston.   The brick church retains its original alter, communion rail, pews, and light fixtures and is one of only a few unaltered Victorian religious interiors in Charleston.

Emanuel A.M.E. Church circa 1910

Between 1949 to 1951, the magnificent brick structure with encircling marble panels was restored, redecorated and stuccoed.

Emanuel A.M.E. Church, Charleston SC photo Cal Sr

Mother Emanuel AME Church Charleston photo: Steven Hyatt

Stained glass Emanel church

Many prominent figures have spoken at the church throughout the years, including Booker T. Washington in 1909, Martin Luther King Jr. in 1962 and Coretta Scott King in 1969.

King Center Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Emanuel AME

Mother Emanuel was placed onto the National Register of Historic Places in 1985 and in 1989 lost its steeple when Hurricane Hugo battered the Charleston peninsula.

Emanuel A.M.E. Church 1989

Today, while a solemn testament to its recent horrors, be certain that Emanuel AME Church will persevere once more.

Emanuel AME Church

Mr. H says: We are twice armed if we fight with faith.