Sunday, June 16, 2013

How I Found My Style Sundays- Housepitality Designs name is Shirley and I blog at Housepitality Designs. header-spring-300x60 
  When Pamela asked that I be a part of her "How I Found My Style" series I was so flattered and honored to be among a great group of wonderful bloggers with a great sense of style, talent and creativity. How I found my style goes back to when I was 6 months old...yes 6 months old. I have always loved the "Southern Plantation Style". Now if Shirley MacLaine is right... .....if we had past lives, then I would have been on a Southern Plantation hopefully with Rhett Butler. The South, known for its hospitality, and the pineapple as its treasured symbol.

 This is me!...I was 6 months can you see the "pineapple design" in the background? My little sister thought she was being "crafty" one day... .....and cropped most of the pictures in my parents album. So, there you have it...I was introduced to the "symbol of hospitality" at a very early age! My decorating style largely "Southern Traditional". 

This is what you see when you enter my home... .....mainly a traditional style feel. 

 But then you can see how much I love vintage and antique architectural items such as the antique wood and iron shutters over my fireplace that has an "old world" feel. They are actually from an old villa in Italy (my hubby's heritage).
 A view of the living/great room facing the front doors... 

 .....a 4 foot pineapple light hangs in the I am still with my Southern Traditional Style.. 

 This is one of my favorite books,"The Welcoming House". 

Now moving in closer into the living can see some changes in style from a coastal feel, to a garden feel with my garden finials on the hearth, to a touch of french country in the toile pillows and a modern feel with the Ikat pillows. I guess you have finally discovered that I so love a blend of styles. Does that make me a non-traditionalist? I have recently gotten away from labeling my style. I want to think that my style is that of warm and inviting interiors that make me, my family and friends comfortable. Other than being "infused" at 6 months old with my love of "Southern Traditional" my decorating style began when I was 10 years old.

 I so loved my "Aunt Mary", she was actually my dad's cousin, but we kids called her Aunt Mary. Aunt Mary lived in Coral Gables, Florida. I always couldn't wait to go visit her. She crafted, she made wool braided rugs, she antiqued, but mainly "junked"! 

Yes, I used to drive along with her on trash day in Coral Gables. She was THE original junker! She would get the best things from the curbs. Her best find? An original Tiffany lamp!! Way back then when people would pass on, their children would just throw stuff out in the trash old junk you know, so Aunt Mary, got me hooked on my appreciation of antiques and their value. 

 Aunt Mary and Uncle Clyde had a second home in the Florida Keys... Yes, "my uncle" was an original "conch". When we would visit them there in the summers we would troll the beaches and she knew just where to go to get those treasures that washed up on the beach. Her bottle and jug collections were phenomenal. She also won many awards for her shell creations. 

 Aunt Mary and Uncle Clyde are gone now with my dad and the angels. I miss her so much and think of her whenever I am antiquing or junking. I can hear her voice. 

 She would say, "Antiques are like friends, choose them well, and you will never go wrong".

Then there is my mom....She is Japanese...and talk about "hospitality". She taught me that no matter what you must treat your guests with the utmost respect and always make them feel welcomed and comfortable and never want for anything. All that you do for people comes back ten fold you know, you reap what you sow, but she calls it "karma".

I talk about my mom surrounded by pics of my kitchen as that is always where you will find her or rushing toward you to fill your "half full" glass. 

The men in my family just love her. She is 88 years young and can still run circles around us!

The master bedroom is very traditional. My hubby is a very traditional guy and he really has opinions on decorating.. We still have our very first bedroom set that we bought. Most of the pieces now are in the guest rooms. OK, I am going to confess it will date me. We bought our very first bedroom set when we got married 43 years ago. Yes, I got married when I was 2!! I have known my hubby since we were in the 2nd grade...we were married then!! :)

It is great that we have the same taste and he loves our home as much as I do. When we were dating, we passed by an Ethan Allen store. I asked if he wouldn't mind if we stopped, he said, yes and we spent hours in that store...I knew then "he was the one"!! 

One Christmas, my dad surprised my sister and I with a new bedroom set. He knew just what to in the "Early American Style". It wasn't Ethan Allen, but it was pretty!

Pamela asked me what has been my most treasured find?... It has to be two things...things that I found, that I passed up because of the price and shortly thereafter they appeared in my home as gifts from my hubby. One of them is in the background of our little kitchenette in the media room, my pie safe.

.....and the other is my stained glass piece...which probably is my most sentimental!! 

 We love our home and we count our blessings every day.

When I finish this post, soon thereafter, there will be guests in this room for the weekend. It is decorated with a "cottage" feel (another style I love).

This is the main guest room...a "snippet" of it. I plan to update my "house tour" next week as it is a year old!!'s time! 

This is the view that my guests have...every room in the house, excluding some bathrooms has a view of the golf course. The entire back of the house is french doors, both upper and lower floors.

As a teenager, when my friends were buying Seventeen Magazines and if I only had enough money for one magazine I would buy a House it made me very happy! So, back to the question? What is my style??... Well, I think from the many magazines that I subscribe to you probably have guessed, I love them all!! Any style that is warm and inviting and comfortable. And if I can give you any tips today, I would say, decorate with what you love, always paying attention to detail, to scale and texture and living with colors that you love. To buy the best you can afford, you never tire of quality pieces. With that, your home will just fall into place for you and your family to enjoy!

  So, "From My Front Porch To Yours"...I thank you Pamela for this opportunity to share my home and style!
Thank you Shirley for taking us on a tour of your amazing home and sharing with us your personal memories! I just can not get over its beauty every time I stop by to visit your blog. You are a true inspiration. 


  1. Great post, I love Shirley's style and how gracious she is as a person too. Always a pleasure to visit her blog. Hugs, Marty

  2. I always enjoy seeing pictures of Shirley's home. Her hospitality is evident in all of her blog posts. Such a beautiful home and very welcoming! Thanks for sharing Shirley's style with us, Pamela!

  3. Thanks Pamela for the honor and opportunity of featuring "my style" today....I appreciate all of lovely comments and compliments....Hope you are having a great Father's Day with your family!

  4. Thank you Pamela for giving us a tour of Shirley's entire home. I'm one of Shirley's followers so I've seen snippets of it before. It is absolutely gorgeous! Blessings to you, Patti

  5. Your home is beautiful, Shirley. Thanks to Pamela for sharing it.

  6. Thanks Shirley for allowing us to meander in your beautiful Southern home. So beautiful! So welcoming!
    Thanks to you Pamela for sharing with us this luvly Sunday morning.
    Happy Sunday ladies.
    Hugs, Gee

  7. Shirley, your home is really lovely, and I love everything about it. The ceiling in your living room and foyer are especially nice.
    Thanks, Patty

  8. Shirley, I love your decorating style. It is very beautiful and welcoming.

  9. Shirley, your traditional has a twist of fresh and new..not like Mama's or Grandmothers. It's all so pretty and interesting to the eye.

    Your pineapple symbols remind me that years ago when I was in Charleston I heard a tour guide say "when the ship's captain is in port, he places a fresh pineapple (from his travels) on the gatepost of his home." It became a welcome sign for friends and family.

  10. Shirley's home is just beautiful! I'd love to be a guest in the cottage room. :) Great feature!

  11. So fun learning more about my friend, Shirley and I have been very lucky to be a guest in her home and it is even better in person.

  12. You have such a GORGEOUS home! Thank you for sharing it with us. I would love your round, white coffee table, and Pinned your bedroom. Thank you for your comments on my store--my kids are quite grown, that's why the timing was right!

  13. Your home is lovely, Shirley- you have done a great job of making it warm & inviting. I enjoyed reading about your family and childhood memories. :)

  14. I spy the guest room I was lucky enough to stay in when I visited Shirley. These pics do not do justice to her beautiful home. What I love most about Shirley is that she is true to her style. I always enjoy touring her home, even if its online. Thanks for sharing it.

  15. Thank you, Pamela, for sharing Shirley's beautiful home! Although I've never met her in person, her kindness and generosity always shines and definitely shows throughout her home. She's a special lady!~~Angela

  16. Shirley is a sweetheart! I love seeing how she found her style and her beautiful home!

  17. Having known Shirley for many years, I can tell you she is as warm and welcoming in personality as her "style" reflects. I always look forward to seeing her home and the changes she makes to her decorating.

  18. Thanks, Pamela and Shirley!
    I also love traditional furnishings and a few antiques. I hated antiques when I had to help clean house as a child. Love pineapples in my decor, too.

    Thanks again,

  19. Shirley is a favorite with me. She is so talented and creative. She also is very warm and welcoming to us newer bloggers. She has given me support and visits my blog often. She will offer help if asked. One classy lady. Her home is just beautiful and she doesn't miss a beat with decorating it either.


  20. Shirley has such an authentic easy but elegant style. I love her Southern sensibilities and the way she uses them in her decor.

  21. This is a FABULOUS guest post! I love the idea, and always love reading what Shirley has to say, and of course seeing her house! New follower :)

  22. I enjoyed seeing a broader view of Shirley's beautiful home. It felt as if I was standing inside her home! I thought her pineapple shaped chandelier in her foyer was the perfect choice. It set the tone for the rest of the home. She has done a great job capturing a southern traditional style in her home.

  23. Shirley's warm, welcoming and beautiful home is the perfect reflection of it's owner! So glad you featured her Pamela! :-)

  24. I've had the honor and pleasure of visiting Shirley in her home multiple times and can personally attest to not only the beauty of it, but the welcoming feel! So glad to see her featured here today!

  25. Gorgeous! And so very welcoming! I adore the view from the guest room. How lovely that would be to wake up to!

  26. I just found this on Pinterest, I LOVE Shirley AND her gorgeous home!!! I totally agree that we should decorate with what WE love and not try to copy someone else. Shirley is a sweetheart!!


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