Nathaniel Russell House

 

The Nathaniel Russell House is a historic house at 51 Meeting Street in Charleston, South Carolina. I am breaking down our destinations as we adventure through the low country. 

Nathaniel Russel House - Charleston, South Carolina. The rectangular house has a symmetrical facade. The second floor windows are ornamented with white marble lintels recessed below roman inspired arches. 

 Gardens leading to the visitors center

Gardens leading to the visitors center

 Front of house

Front of house

I am absolutely in love with the gardens in the low country. The climate is humid and tropical, resembling a hothouse. It rains almost every afternoon so I doubt many people have to think about watering their plants. I live in California and envy this flourishing horticultural climate. 

The most important architectural feature in the home is the warm yellow ochre staircase hall that spans three stories. The spiral staircase is a canteliver design (the step above supports the step below). This was all accomplished by the use of wooden pegs, not a single nail or screw was used during construction. The center features a troupe-l'oeil painting, an artistic illusion to trick the eye into believing the design is 3d.  

 Elipitial medallion to meet the second story

Elipitial medallion to meet the second story

The shutters and pine plank flooring is original to the house. To prevent the furniture from being further damaged by the sunlight, the shutters are closed during specific times of the day. 

Adjacent to the spiral staircase sits the oval dining room. The walls are covered in turquoise wallpaper applied square by square and painted after application. Interesting fact about life in the south: they begin the day with breakfast; as much of us do, although they eat an early supper around 3 o'clock in the afternoon. Later in the evening around 5 or 6 leftovers/cold-cuts are served or available if people are still hungry, followed shortly by dessert. 

The oval drawing room is located on the second floor right above the dining room. This is where the women would retire to after dinner, separating themselves from the men. The brightly colored and ornate rug is reflected through the entire room with its apricot walls and detailed crown molding.  

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This room is similar to what we refer to as the master bedroom. The walls were hand painted with a special brush to replicate how it would have looked in the 18th century.  The furniture in the home is not directly related to the Russell family, but pieces from the time period that they resided in the home. The Nathaniel Russell House is definitely a site to visit if you find yourself in Charleston, South Carolina. The surrounding area and neighborhood of this site allows for an incredible opportunity to walk around and enjoy the beautiful homes. The sister property to this house is the Aiken-Rhett House. I will share more about the Aiken-Rhett in later post. 

 Georgian style four poster bed with upholstery hangings for ornate and warmth purposes.

Georgian style four poster bed with upholstery hangings for ornate and warmth purposes.

Have you had the pleasure to visit Charleston, SC? If so what was your favorite thing about the historic downtown district? 

Please share comments below if you enjoyed the following post. Thank you.

 

 

Sun-kissed Hydrangea

 

Hydrangea flowers are gorgeous with their ever changing colored blooms. They require moist soil and plant food preferably for hydrangeas with an added amount of ph for the soil. They flourish with the added ph and are known to change the blooms blue.

I am still learning how to care for mine day by day. I like to determine how much water is needed based off of how they look. The leaves will droop and feel soft to the touch when they need water. I love these plants that talk back and let you know when its time for water and a little love when you've nearly forgotten. This beauty to the left in the afternoon sun, is a velvety pink hydrangea in my grandfathers garden. He has taught me so much when it comes to plants and how to keep them alive and happy. 

 

Flower Power

 
 Paul's Flowers

Paul's Flowers

Shopping for flowers is my favorite activity. I enjoy putting together my own arrangements. This allows me to have fun and get creative by mixing different colored blooms. The flowers are constantly changing with every season as late spring - mid summer is known for peonies, therefore they're very hard to find during the winter months. Tulips are quintessential spring and easter flowers. Everyone always wants to know how to keep there flowers longer. I suggest switching the water about every 2 days. It should only take a couple minutes out of your schedule. When you find flowers dying in your arrangement it is best to clip them and toss, so they do not affect the other flowers. I like to keep it simple and switch out arrangements when the time comes. 

What is your favorite time of year to have flowers in your home?

 

The Garden within the Island

 

Can you believe it's almost Friday? I feel like the weekend just ended and we were in Washington. We recently just flew up to Seattle, WA to visit family.  It was my first time visiting outside of the airport terminals. I had stopped through before but never left the airport, it's very funny how that tends to happen. 

The trip was primarily focused on destination, Anderson Island which is the southern most island in the Puget Sound. It is accessible by ferry which makes for an eventful stay. Call me an outsider but this was wild to me, a ferry never slows us down here in the Bay Area traffic is the only thought in our minds. I found that making the ferry times was a bit stressful. The ferry ride slowed down all problems in the world. 

The island was full of tall pine trees native to the area and two lane roads veering off into all directions. Our stay was in a beautiful vacation home surrounded by lush gardens. I was in awe of the gardens and jealous of all their land. I only have a small balcony and am limited to potted plants. The garden was like paradise and surprises around every corner. They had tomatoes, onions, garlic, sunflowers, peas of different varieties. 

 Yellow Onion, growing tall with beautiful flowers.

Yellow Onion, growing tall with beautiful flowers.

 Garlic Bulb, tall curvy Spathe perfect for pesto sauce

Garlic Bulb, tall curvy Spathe perfect for pesto sauce

This trip was one for the books, the quick ones always are. 

What was one of your most memorable vacations to date?

 

Red White & Blue

 

The 4th of July is all about showing off your red white & blue. I wanted to find a creative way to showcase the colors in our home without the traditional decor. The floral colors are lighter in hues not your usual primary colors, but who says we can’t go a shade lighter or darker.  We are having a small 4th of July since it is our first independence day in our new place. I didn’t feel the need to decorate to the nine since we are keeping a low key holiday. We have a wonderful view hope that our neighbors purchased a lot of fireworks for a great show.

What are some of the creative ways you’ve transformed the holiday decor in your home?

 

Warm Summer Sun

 
 Red Trumpet Vine, Campsis Radicans

Red Trumpet Vine, Campsis Radicans

This weekend and the next few days will be record highs for the local bay area. How are you staying cool during these warm times? The mornings begin very warm and are tell tale signs of a hot day ahead. I usually retreat inside or sit by the pool and catch some sun. The beauty about living near the coast has to be the ocean breeze that rolls in around 5, allows some time to open up the windows and cool down the house.How are you staying cool during these warm times?

Warm summer sun,
Shine kindly here,
Warm southern wind,
Blow softly here.
Green sod above,
Lie light, lie light.
Good night, dear heart,
Good night, good night.
— Mark Twain
 

Scents of fresh blooms

 
 Decorator Showcase,  K Interiors

Decorator Showcase, K Interiors

 Burlingame, Ca - Dining Room

Burlingame, Ca - Dining Room

 
 

Everyone should have a fresh set of flowers in the house to start the week of right. The smells of the blooms linger in the air and throughout the house. Two bouquets from the store can split into at least 3 - 4 vases. One could be the larger vase for the dining table. The second and third can be split into smaller vases for your nightstand and or dresser top. If you happen to have a larger bathroom and enough counter space the vanity top is the perfect place for a few green stems and one or two flowers. The key to creating beautiful arrangements isn't trying to squeeze one vase full but separating the flowers. I so often will only put 2 - 3 stems in the vase on the dining table. Some flowers can stand alone and steal the show themselves.

 

Spring Mix

 
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The vibrancy and colors of spring is something I enjoy every time April comes around. The rolling green hills, sprinkled with wildflowers lush from the months of rain fall. The amount of colors present in nature this time of year is unreal. Gardner's and people alike flock to their local nursery's to replicate the scenes they find in nature. Bright colors bring joy to the soul and through this people plant beautiful flowers and nurture their gardens all spring for summer time harvest.

Spring is a time of plans and projects.
— Leo Tolstoy

 

 

 

Mirage Hotel, Las Vegas

 

The best part about Vegas is choosing which hotel to stay at on the strip. Each location has their own theme, style and decor that sets each other apart. Previously, we've stayed at The Venetian and it was lovely big rooms and killer views of the strip and mountain range. 

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 Valet - Front Entrance

Valet - Front Entrance

This visit we decided since it was summertime it was only appropriate  that we should stay in a tropical paradise. Upon first arrival it felt as if I had walked into a larger version of the tiki room at Disneyland with the colors and bamboo accents. The hotel had a beautiful conservatory full of indoor plants thriving under the glass domed roof. 

 Lobby bar next to the gardens

Lobby bar next to the gardens

 Bromeliads next to the slot machines

Bromeliads next to the slot machines