Living Graciously & Welcoming Inspiration

Inspiration comes in many forms as we know and I gained a great deal of it last Friday when I stopped by Circa Interiors & Antiques to grab a copy of Jane Schwab & Cindy Smith's new book, The Welcoming House: The Art of Living Graciously.

there's nothing like relaxing in the sun to a good book

there's nothing like relaxing in the sun to a good book

Everyone at Circa was so lovely and warm and I couldn't help but be inspired by the body of work that these two ladies have completed over the course of their careers. They've created a mini-empire here in Charlotte with one of the most beautiful retail spaces around and have been designing elegant spaces for people all over the country (and beyond I'm sure) for nearly two decades. I can only hope to experience a fraction of the success they've had in my own career.

The book is beautiful and timeless and as it rests on my cocktail table atop the other books, I know my guests will enjoy looking through it for years to come. The gorgeous photos depict classic and thoughtfully designed spaces that seem to move effortlessly between one another. I am most inspired by the way Jane & Cindy's spaces connect to one another and flow naturally outdoors, beckoning guests to enjoy the beautiful outdoor spaces they've so thoughtfully created. 

My favorite home in this book is without a doubt the Schwab's Jackson Hole retreat. They intended to create a getaway "that would be one with the landscape" and it is truly magnificent. There are few places on this earth as beautiful as Jackson Hole and to have created a space that speaks to and reflects its grand surroundings is truly a feat of vision and talent. Everything from the homes construction made of old timber and Montana moss rock, to its tasteful & organic decor speaks to me and seems at one with its picturesque setting. I can only imagine what a coveted escape this is for the Schwab's and their friends and family. The fabulous Wyoming retreat is only one of eight beautiful projects Jane & Cindy explore in their book - each beckons in a distinctly different way. 

While I don't think that living graciously has much to do with a well-designed home, I do know that a well-designed home can welcome you warmly and that is exactly how I felt  last Friday when I met Jane & Cindy for the first time -- welcome. Like a welcoming home and a gracious friend, this book will continue to unveil its treasures over time, one page at a time.

'Til Next Time! 

xoxo Rachel

© THE WELCOMING HOUSE by Jane Schwab and Cindy Smith, Rizzoli New York, 2013.  Images from THE WELCOMING HOUSE are to be credited on a case-by-case basis and may not be reproduced in any way, published, or transmitted digitally without written permission from the publisher