For my 10-year wedding anniversary, I was lucky enough to spend a couple of nights with my husband at Blackberry Farm in Walland, TN. We were excited to go, but also were rolling our eyes a bit about the price. I mean we were thrilled to be able to get away to this fabulous escape, but we knew in our hearts that it was a one-time thing. There was no way this could live up to our expectations, which could not have been higher.
Fast forward three days later and we had the calendar out trying to figure out when we could spring for this vacation again. It was incredible. The food, the service, the location, the accommodations … and the design (and if you become a Friend of the Farm, you can get rooms on sale with their yearly sale). While we were there, my husband, someone who does not ever comment on things like curtains, lighting, rugs and furniture, said, “I’m not sure what you call this design, but can we do this at our house?” We were really especially taken by The Barn, where dinner was served, and how such a large, expansive space could be so cozy and intimate. And thus, without even knowing it, we were introduced to the work of Atlanta-based interior designer Suzanne Kasler. After working with Blackberry Farm founders Kreis and Sandy Beall for 15 years, Kasler’s influence on the property, including the commission to design The Barn, is stunning.
Blackberry Farm has a new division, Blackberry Farm Design, as many want help creating this inviting BF aesthetic. Kreis Beall has now stepped out of the role of proprietress (and her son, Sam, has taken up the role of the day-to-day operations) and into the role of director of design. She became fast friends with Suzanne Kasler after Kasler designed her 2000 home renovation. Since then, Beall continues to lean on Kasler’s opinion and advice for each home she designs, showcasing the lovely art of two creative minds working together.
Kasler has the ability to produce inviting design that is well-executed and fresh. Her designs are also peaceful and never overdecorated. No matter if the color scheme is bright and modern or neutral and filled with antiques, her designs feel complete and similar to a perfectly made cashmere sweater: always rich, yet comfortable; well-designed, but meant to be lived in.
The Antiques & Garden Show in Nashville, taking place January 30-February 1, is drawing experts from across the country, and we are excited for all the lectures. But, after being so intrigued by the designs of Suzanne Kasler and Blackberry Farm Design, we are more than excited to be in the audience for this lecture, where both Suzanne and Kreis Ball will speak on their design and friendship.
We caught up with Kasler and asked a few questions, including what she’ll be shopping for at the show, if it’s gauche to haggle with vendors over prices and what her favorite paint colors are. See our Q&A after the stunning photos below:
Where are your favorite places to find inspiration?
Suzanne Kasler: I find inspiration everywhere, but I do love travel, as it always inspires me. I love to go to Paris and L.A. Both places have influences of architecture, lifestyle and fashion that always resonate with my style.
Do you have a favorite white paint that you depend on time and again?
SK: I always go to Benjamin Moore White Dove. And I love Farrow & Ball Mizzle and Shaded White.
Are you on the hunt for any particular items at the upcoming Antiques & Garden Show in Nashville?
SK: When I go to the show, I am always open to what unfolds. I certainly keep clients in mind, but I love seeing the unique personality each antique vendor creates, and I buy things I love not knowing where they may end up.
Are there any particular vendors that you are most excited about?
SK: It is always interesting that I find things in unexpected places. I do love the focus the Nashville Antiques & Garden Show has on landscape design.
What do you think about negotiating with the A&G vendors? Is that possible or is that gauche?
SK: I always respect the antiques dealers and do not negotiate. I love the discussion of when the pieces were found and the specialness and history that each piece brings.
Thank you, Suzanne!
To hear Suzanne in person, along with Kreis Beall of Blackberry Farm Design, make plans to attend the 25th year of the Antiques & Garden Show in Nashville, TN, taking place January 30-February 1 at the Music City Center. This year’s keynote speaker is Diane Keaton (don’t we all just love her?!). Margot Shaw of flower magazine is moderating the Saturday design panel, and Garden & Gun is presenting A Southern Garden Tour. Yes, it will be fabulous. FABULOUS.
For complete details, visit antiquesandgardenshow.com.
And, StyleBlueprint will be making the exciting debut of a much-anticipated new product at the A&G Show as well. We’re excited! Stay tuned for details …