Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Q&A with Haskell Harris

Garden & Gun magazine's tag line is, "Soul of the new South". I think the same thing can be said of design and editorial talent, Haskell Harris. Mixing rustic country with Southern glam and tradition she's bringing fresh style to unpredictable places, like Garden & Gun. I love what she does and how every detail matters in her work. Thanks so much for participating in our Q&A, Haskell! (Haskell at her Birmingham cottage from Southern Living)

  1. Name: Haskell Harris
  2. Occupation: Belle Decor Blogger and Associate Editor-Style at Garden & Gun Magazine, former Special Projects and Assistant Homes Editor at Cottage Living Magazine
  3. (Garden & Gun cover photo by Andy Anderson)

  4. Last purchase you made that is hanging on your wall? Well they aren't all that new, but I still love the 18th century maps of Europe that I found in New York with my Mom (an Interior Designer in Virginia). Eventually, I'd like to collect maps of every place I've ever lived, from the ones of Europe to some antique renderings of Virginia, Alabama, Charleston, and beyond. Now that I've moved to Charleston, South Carolina, I have the maps of Europe hanging from antique brass chains in the living room.
  5. (Map on bookshelf is Haskell's as seen on stylecourt)

  6. What's the item you've had the longest hanging on your wall? I guess the items I've had longest are the personal mementos framed in sandwich glass that pick up the paint color of whatever wall they happen to be hanging against. My favorites include a poem called, "Vaudville" by my high school English teacher Jean Smith, letters from my Father and Grandmother, and old black and white Polaroids from some of the first photo shoots I ever went on as a magazine editor.
  7. Favorite place to buy art? I don't have the luxury of buying much fine art, but I have always admired Francine Van Hove's black and white studies of women sleeping. There is something soothing and quiet about them. I also love Barbara Cole's ethereal underwater photographs. They have a similar, tranquil quality too. When I buy art, it's usually from places like Antique and Vintage Furniture on Main Street in High Point, North Carolina. The kind of places that sell old landscape paintings, pressed botanicals, portraits, and the like. I also frequent online shops like Perch Home ( in New Orleans for affordable art and right now the owner, Caroline, has the most incredible shadowboxes full of white butterflies that I have my eye on. I think they would look absolutely amazing on a glossy navy blue wall over a settee in an entryway. I also think books are a great way to create art out of nothing. Last year I stumbled upon a fantastic company that binds classic books in metallic and vibrantly colored leathers that is absolutely wonderful. I could seriously live in a house that just had a sofa, a bed, and lots and lots and lots of books (and maybe a fireplace).
  8. (Van Hove black and white studies from, cover from, white butterflies from

  9. Do you collect anything? I collect all kinds of things: hourglasses, mirrors, intaglios, keys, etc. I have the hourglasses scattered about on a bookshelves and bedside tables and things but I've clustered all the mirrors around my vanity - salon wall style.
  10. (Haskel's collection of mirrors from Southern Living)
  11. Any advice for those exhibiting art in their homes? Think of the art in your house as a way to tell the story of your life. When I think back on my favorite example of this idea, I think of an old beach house belonging to my cousins in Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina. The house was built in the twenties and was full of great details. My favorite spot was a long hallway covered in white v-groove panelling that had sepia photographs of the family taken at the exact same time of year, every year. Above the photo there was a worn brass and linen label with the year handwritten on it. As you moved down the hallway, you literally watched the family grow up year by year. I love that sort of feeling in a house. The feeling that it's not just stuff, that it means something to the person who tacked it up, that it conjures a memory, an emotion, etc.(Haskell's Birmingham living room as seen in Southern Living)


  1. Hi Kate. What a great glimpse into Haskell's design aesthetic. I am a big fan of Haskell's and have followed her career since she was at Cottage Living. Now I'm obsessed with Garden & Gun. She is so talented. What a cool concept G&G is!
    And your blog is wonderful, Kate. I'll add you to our list on the perch. blog -
    thanks for mentioning us and come visit when you're next in New Orleans.
    Caroline Robert
    owner - perch.

  2. always enjoy reading what Haskell has to say, she's very talented. great feature!

  3. Love Haskell's cottage from when she lived in Bham. Enjoyed reading about her thoughts on art...

  4. Beautiful and understated. Thanks for the introduction and great links.
    Great Guns, Garden and Gun!