From the Desk of Dixie

A Fall Feast Table Setting with Christina Brockman of Huckleberry Collective

October in the South has so far given us sweltering 100-degree days, but thankfully this week has brought with it cooler temps, crisper air and an excitement for Fall and Thanksgiving celebration planning! Our talented friend, Christina Brockman of Huckleberry Collective, serves up the perfect Fall table inspiration, featuring lush autumnal tones and the bountiful food harvests this season brings.

After spotting our Festive Fowl Collection, Christina knew her timeless Spode Woodland china collection would coordinate beautifully along with the Evergreen linens from India Amory. From there, a harvest-themed tablescape, featuring stunning florals arranged by Christina, fell into place to complement the perfectly seasonal artwork by Dixie artist Inslee Fariss found on the menu, invitations and place cards. We have listed all of the sources, including the mouthwatering feast provided by Birmingham, Alabama-based Ashley Mac's Catering, for this stunning table at the bottom of this post.

Photography: Mary Margaret Smith Photography

Styling and Florals: Christina Brockman, Huckleberry Collective

China: Spode Woodland Dinnerware

Linens: India Amory

Flatware: Oneida Dover

Glasses: Heirloom

Food: Ashley Mac's: Brown Sugar Glazed Ham, Cornbread Dressing, Cheesy Twice Baked Mashed Potatoes, Brown Sugar Bacon Green Beans, Sour Cream Biscuits, and Pecan Pie.


A "Modern-Day Lady Pilgrims" Thanksgiving Table

We were delighted when Laura Nell Burton and Christin Gish, founders of Cloche Designs, invited Dixie Founder, Jennifer Hunt, and Creative Director, Hollon Hollon, to be a part of their "Pre-Thanksgiving Dinner Celebrating Modern-Day Lady Pilgrims." Everything the Cloche ladies touch turns to gold and this incredibly designed and thoughtful Thanksgiving tablescape is no exception. We are thrilled to have contributed the paper goods and it was our honor to be included among exceptionally talented women collaborators who are blazing creative trails in their trades - Lee Cordon of Do Say Give, Cynthia Nouri of Sasha Nicholas and Jenna Kingman of J.K.W. Style.

Cloche believes the heart of every event begins with its paper story - we couldn't agree more! They chose our Antler suite that features Inslee Fariss' beautiful artwork for the invitation, menu card, place cards and gift tags, with Holly Hollon's calligraphy as the finishing touch. You can shop the entire Antler suite here.

For all things tabletop, Sasha Nicholas is your resource! Starring on this table are: the “Henley Chargers” in pine green; Herend’s “Fish Scale” dinner plates in rust; her gold-rimmed “Stag Crest” salad plates; and emerald green matching monogrammed napkins. The stemware is a mix of William Yeoward’s “Fern” and vintage glasses that belonged to Laura Nell's grandmother. Flatware is Reed & Barton “Grand Renaissance” which was her parents’ sterling silver pattern gifted to her on her own wedding day. According to Cloche, use what's in your china cabinet, mix patterns and always incorporate heirlooms that represent special stories!

One of the thoughtful details we love about Sasha Nicholas' pieces is the option to include a message on the underside. 

The earthy fruit, pheasant feathers, and hand-dyed silk ribbons found in the floral arrangement are all lovely organic contrasts to the vibrant rust and green linens and monogrammed dinnerware. 

For hostess gifts, Cloche turned to the gift giving expert, our friend, Lee Cordon of Do Say Give. Visit her website for resources on how to act beautifully and give meaningfully. She is soon launching her Holiday Gift Guide and you will not want to miss it!

Lee selected two perfect gifts for each Lady Pilgrim, the “Carved Teak Serving Board” from Shop Terrain and a family recipe tea towel from The Gift of Today.

And for entertaining the little ones during dinner, Lee included pilgrim and Indian peg dolls from Two Wild Olives and “The Thanksgiving Story” by Alice Dalgliesh.

Since the Cloche ladies leave no details overlooked, they commissioned Jenna Kingman of J.W.K. Style in San Antonio to create Mommy & Me ensembles made out of Liberty of London textiles to match the party!

We love that Laura Nell and Christin like to include their daughters when setting the table. It's never too early to teach our children the art of being a gracious host! 

We couldn't love this Thanksgiving feast table more and we hope you are inspired to set a lovely, thoughtful table for your guests this season. 

Laura Nell's Nana's Green Bean Casserole Recipe:

2 packages (10.5 oz each) frozen French-cut green beans
2 Tbsp. flour
2 Tbsp. butter
1 Tsp. salt
1/4 Tsp. pepper
1 Tbsp. sugar
1/2 pint sour cream
1 Tbsp. grated onion
Dash garlic salt (or 1/2 clove fresh pressed garlic)
1/2 lb. swiss cheese, grated
1 cup cheddar cheese, grated
3 cups corn flakes, crushed
2 tsp. butter, melted

Cook and drain beans. Combine butter, flour, salt, pepper, sugar, sour cream, onion and garlic in saucepan. Cook until thickened, just a few minutes. Mix sauce with beans and pour into buttered casserole dish. Cover with mixture of cheeses. Top with crushed cornflakes. Drizzle melted butter on top. Bake 400 degrees for 20 minutes until bubbly. 

Yields 6-8 servings

Photoshoot Sources::

Mommy & Me Dresses & Overall Apparel Styling | J.W.K. Style.
Gifting | Do Say Give.
All China & Napkins | Sasha Nicholas.
Stemware | William Yeoward & Vintage.
Sterling Flatware |  Reed & Barton Grand Renaissance.
Photography | Parish Photography.

A Tradition of Entertaining - Nothing could be Finer than to be in Carolina

Nothing could be finer than to be in North Carolina for Thanksgiving, especially if you are a member of the McElwee family who gathers together every year to celebrate this favorite holiday.  Our own Dixie designer Addie McElwee's family gathering was extra special this past year as the extended clan of 50 brothers, sisters, and cousins gathered in Statesville, North Carolina to celebrate the 100th birthday of the house where their grandparents lived and raised four children.

Family lore has it that in the mid-60s, several cousins were attending the same summer camp in the North Carolina mountains and didn't recognize each other. Estelle McElwee - one of the first generation of McElwees to grow up in the house on West End Avenue - said "we cannot have that" and thus began the tradition of gathering together every Thanksgiving.  The four siblings have long since passed and with great anticipation the 12 cousins and their families continue the tradition to this day - with the number growing every year!

Currently owned by Shelly and Nate McElwee, the home continues to be a "work in progress," but it is with heartfelt pride that the house remains a gathering place for all to come home to.  When they hosted the family several years ago, a scavenger hunt was planned for the younger cousins to find and learn about special places in Statesville that were part of their heritage.

Many hours of preparation go into hosting such a large group.  Shelly, an Interior Designer, was faced with the challenge of seating 50 people.  Once she decided where to put all the tables, she began to gather items such as magnolia, candles and bittersweet to accompany different patterns of china,  including Blue Willow. It resulted in a warm and inviting tablescape for all to enjoy, whether seated on the screened-in porch or in the dining room.

The McElwees plan to gather at a cousins house near Charleston this year, with a couple of new people joining the clan - a bride and a baby!! As they gather around the table and sing the Doxology, they will give thanks for their many blessings, for those who they've loved and lost, for those who started this wonderful tradition and for the new generation of cousins in hopes that they will continue to gather for many years to come! 

Dixie has created a menu this year for the McElwees' Thanksgiving celebration. You can make a menu for your own party or gathering using any of our invitation designs. Shop designs from our 2017 Holiday Collection here

Photography: Amanda Caldwell Photography

Paige Minear's Thanksgiving Table

We love this beautiful Thanksgiving Table created by Paige Minear from the Pink Clutch. The mix of Gina Langford's Forest Garland design with Paige's chinoiserie blue and green table accents are such a fresh take for fall. Here are a few thoughts from Paige on creating her beautiful spread:

This year when designing our table I worked with two incredible companies to bring together what may be my favorite fall table to date. Mixing together my favorite blue and white dishes and a new addition of green I am thrilled with the set up that I have enjoyed for a few days as I pass the room heading to other parts of the house. Since the leaves are turning and falling to the ground the green was a fun choice to make sure I still have a good splash of green in my immediate vision.

I am a girl who likes to use what she has mixed in with a few new things to make the old things feel bright and shiny when sitting next to their new friends.  I rarely use our Blue Willow salad plates so this set up was truly a treat for me.  I used burlap chargers that I already owned along with a Chinoiserie green tablecloth from a few years ago and mixed in Kate Spade green dinner plates (thank you Lance!) and the blue and white salad plates and butter pats I was dying to use. 

I headed to my favorite spot for fabulous finds and gathered up some amazing pieces to add to not only the table but also the room.  My choices from At Home round out the table perfectly and also create two spaces to have more serving area and easy access to things I will need for the day.  I love that family and friends will be able to make drinks and serve themselves while the Hubs and I are still pulling together last minute things to finish off the meal.  

I am smitten with the incredible menu and place cards I chose designed by Gina Langford from Dixie Design Collective.  Aren't they amazing??  I love how they tie all of the blue and magnolia together to create a fabulous fall dinner. The girls were incredible to work with and helped me chose exactly what I was looking for and then narrow down font options. I was looking for a feeling of warmth and comfort instead of a feeling of formality.  The lower case fonts we mixed together created exactly what I was hoping to achieve.  I love the customer service the girls provided, never once did I feel like they were anything other than helpful when I kept changing my mind.  Being so picky can sometimes not be my friend.  My menus and place cards arrived so quickly and the wrapping and personal note that always impresses me took my breath away once again.  I have my eye on two other designs for Christmas gatherings.  #yay!!!

I decided to tie the place cards to my At Home copper mugs for two reasons.  I love that it changes it up and I love that when the cups are picked up from the table and used there is no question who's drink belongs to whom.  Win, win!

Happy Thanksgiving

We hope everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving! We have been busy this Holiday season with the launch of Dixie and we're looking forward to spending time with family to celebrate all we are thankful for. We wanted to share with you a few things our wonderful designers and team are thankful for this year....

I am thankful for my supportive husband; he truly is my rock and such an encourager. - Vaughan Spanjer

Neville Longbottom, my dachshund and home office companion. - Katherine Ross

I am most thankful for the health of my family, especially my 11 grandchildren! - Angela Welch

I am thankful for a warm house and for the joy in watching the three wildly different personalities of my three girls. - Sarah Robins Powell
I am so thankful for all the wonderful designers that have come together to help make Dixie Design Collective possible. I am amazed by all their talent and gifts and thankful to them for sharing with Dixie. - Holly Hollon

An amazing husband who also does the laundry and dishes when life gets crazy. For two beautiful boys who love their Mama madly. For a business where I’m surrounded by some of the most creative minds I know. And for God who makes all things possible. - Jennifer Hunt

I am thankful for all those I hold dear: my family and friends and my wonderful husband. They are constantly encouraging and standing alongside me. I feel incredibly blessed to walk through life with each of them. More than anything I am thankful for a good God whose faithfulness never fails. - Lydia Carraway

Photo Credit: The place setting is from Southern Living's Collection at Dillards. The quail plates are designed by Holly Hollon