Belle Decor

Before and After: From Timeworn Farmhouse to Handsome Homestead

By Haskell HarrisBelle DecorAugust 20, 2015

We’re always inspired by fellow house romantics who appreciate Southern homes with history. This month in our Before and After series, we profile a Georgia farmhouse that’s lived many lives.

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Standout Southern Handbags

By Haskell HarrisBelle DecorAugust 10, 2015

Handbags that just get better with age are a beautiful thing and lately we’ve noticed a handful of talented female Southern designers putting a handmade spin on the idea, from leather bucket bags to cotton and silk clutches. Shop a few of our favorites below:

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Welcoming Front Doors

By Haskell HarrisBelle DecorAugust 2, 2015

A few weeks ago, we asked readers to tag their favorite Southern front doors on Instagram using #southernfrontdoors. We’ve enjoyed every post and have compiled a gallery of thirty images that reflect the wide variety of architectural styles, exterior paint colors, and regions submitted. From the melancholy beauty of a time-worn antebellum front door in Georgia to the cheerful riot of color on a door in the Bywater neighborhood of New Orleans, inspiration (and eye candy) abound.

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Perfect Porch Ceiling Colors

By Haskell HarrisBelle DecorJuly 25, 2015

You don’t have to look far in the South to see that porches—and porch sitting—are a cultural mainstay. So is the tradition of painting a porch ceiling blue. Some say the idea stems from the notion that blue porch ceilings prevented insects and birds from nesting. But more often than not, the color is attributed to the story surrounding the Gullah/Geechee shade known as “haint blue” and its influence on American design over the centuries. “The ‘haint blue’ color that is found on homes and buildings throughout the Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor is a visual representation of the power and legacy of Gullah Culture,” says Michael Allen, Community Specialist for the National Park Service. “We know through research that people of African descent brought that tradition surrounding the color with them to the United States. It is a color they believed defended the home from troubled spirits: a bright, Caribbean blue.”

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The Tastemaker Ten: Southern Summer Essentials

By Haskell HarrisBelle DecorJuly 15, 2015

Georgia native Thomas Wages opened his Atlanta menswear shop, Tweeds, in 2013, and he’s attracted a loyal following for his down-to-earth style. From his curated collection of American-made goods to the bespoke suits, shirts, belts, and more that he designs for the shop’s house label, the entrepreneur believes in well-made pieces. Visit his welcoming Westside shop, and you’ll likely find Wages pouring drinks for customers and telling them the stories behind some of his favorite products. Outside the shop, you’ll find him just as passionate about great food and great music as he is about style.

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Five Southern Sites to Save in 2015

By Haskell HarrisBelle DecorJuly 1, 2015

Last week, the National Trust for Historic Preservation announced their annual list of sites threatened by both decay and development across the United States. The list was first published in 1987 and in the twenty-eight years since, the nonprofit has highlighted over 250 at-risk sites. Five of the eleven earmarked properties that appear on the 2015 list are Southern, from the Little Havana neighborhood in Miami to the A.G. Gaston Motel in Birmingham, Alabama, that hosted Martin Luther King Jr. “This year’s list is our most diverse ever, and reflects our commitment to recognizing and preserving all the facets of our diverse history,” says Stephanie Meeks, president of the National Trust for Historic Preservation. “These sites tell American stories that have been overlooked for too long. We hope this list inspires more Americans to join us in the ongoing effort to save the places that tell the full story of our nation.” A full roundup of the Southern properties and the challenges they face follow below. For more information on how to help, visit

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Our Favorite Southern Front Doors

By Haskell HarrisBelle DecorJune 8, 2015

Southerners know how to say welcome in style—sometimes without even saying a word. Whether you’re strolling down a residential street in Richmond, Virginia, or Dallas, Texas, just take a look at all the stylish, inviting front doors and entryways painted in pretty color combinations, overflowing with potted containers, or framed in flowering climbing vines.

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The Global South: Perfect Summer Finds from Mi Golondrina

By Haskell HarrisBelle DecorJune 2, 2015

Dallas, Texas, native Cristina Lynch (pictured below), whose mother grew up in northern Mexico, knew that she wanted to create a business that centered on her Mexican heritage when she founded Mi Golondrina, in 2013.

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Bug Off: Field-Tested Ways to Keep Mosquitoes at Bay

By Haskell HarrisBelle DecorMay 22, 2015

Here in the South, the joy of entertaining guests outdoors can be undermined when less-welcome ones arrive—mosquitoes and other pests. We asked some of the South’s best event designers, who produce weddings and other soirees outside all summer long, how they battle bugs. From organic sprays and wipes to a mail-order mosquito magnet, these are their tried-and-true tricks of the trade.

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Before and After: Forlorn Cabin to Elegant Hunt Camp

By Haskell HarrisBelle DecorMay 14, 2015

Houses with soul and history rank high on our list of reasons to love living in the South. And it’s always heartening to see a property in need of a revival loved back to life in a way that feels authentic to the place where it sits.

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