I hail from the land of Steel Magnolias, Divine Secrets of The Ya-Ya Sisterhood, grand interiors and impeccable tastes. If imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, then I have flattered with the best of them. In my attempts to recreate the glory of fine, whimsical and vintage interiors, I have found I like home decor memories and keepsakes weaved throughout my decor.
It is a nice way to incorporate the wonder times of my childhood, friendships, travels, and family. I’m neither a Southern Belle nor Hollywood’s interpretation of one. What I am is an appreciator of tasteful objects that take me to a place in my life timeline as I pass by, place around and prize them.
My mother, who is a Southern Belle with a nth degree black belt in retail, is of the firm belief shopping and lunch go together like Visa and MasterCard. My brother and I were not particularly thrilled to see this idea of a circus come to town. The brand of circus I speak of was the weekly ritual of lunching and marathon shopping at “the Village.” The Village was the largest shopping center in town and the epicenter of early nineteen seventies shopping.
When I can’t sleep there is no sheep counting for my inner insomniac. I think back and place the shops in their rightful storefronts circa nineteen seventy something. Works every time! Fast forward to today’s Village where all that is left of yesterday’s retail offerings is one national chain grocery store and a family favorite, Piccadilly Cafeteria. I believe I have spent a collective decade of my life at the Piccadilly. When you are the only kid on the culinary block it just works out that way. With frequent visits came a strange familiarity with the surroundings. My parents viewed after dinner visiting with fellow diners, local friends and dignitaries as the final course of the meal. As my childhood patience was tested, I would stare at the chandeliers, grandfather clock, draperies and paintings in the dining area for what seemed hours.
I always loved the gold gilt framed oil painting of cows that graced the wall of the dining room with its larger than life presence. Some years later the exterior of the cafeteria was remodeled, and the addition of eight large decorative pineapples found a new home atop the cafeteria’s exterior pillars. Word spread fast throughout the community of the Piccadilly renovation and liquidation sale of interior and exterior decorative goods. My checkbook, my brother and my memories headed to the Village faster than you could say dilly plate.
The beautiful oil painting proudly hangs over the master sitting room fireplace in my brother’s home, and the “Piccadilly Pineapple” graces our kitchen dining area. The pineapple is a symbol of hospitality, and goodness knows the Piccadilly served up enough of it over the years to my family.
Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, children of all ages… A memorable memento from where we’ve been, what we’ve seen, and who we are celebrates us and brings it all home.