We are excited to launch the Williamson County edition of StyleBlueprint today. Expect a true focus on this fabulous county with some Nashville thrown in when warranted. And, because StyleBlueprint is also regional, you will be served up some interior design, homes, recipes and vacation ideas from areas all over the South. It’s the best of hyper-local and regional, rolled into one lifestyle publication.
Our Williamson County editor is Cathi Aycock and whether you know her as a friend, a personality or a name, you are bound to learn more about her from today’s interview. We are thrilled to have Cathi under our StyleBlueprint brand, filled with fabulous women who love nothing more than finding treasures in their community to share with our SB readers.
Welcome to StyleBlueprint Williamson Co! Be sure to signup for our daily emails–one a day, arriving at 5 a.m.
-Elizabeth Fox and Liza Graves, Cofounders, StyleBlueprint
Cathi Aycock: FACES of Williamson County, StyleBlueprint Editor
Where in Nashville did you grow up and what brought you to Williamson Co?
I grew up in Antioch, lived in Green Hills for a hot minute, and moved to Williamson County on my one-year wedding anniversary.
Do you have kids?
Two kids. We are paying college tuition for both of them, but I still think of them as my babies. And one fur baby, Coco Chanel, a tiny poodle that thinks she is human.
When someone asks you about moving to Williamson Co, what do you say?
I believe you can be happy anywhere you make up your mind to be happy. But living in Williamson County is one of those places, like Carmel or Charleston, that is visually beautiful, warm and friendly, and full of history. You don’t have to make up your mind to be happy here. Living in Williamson Co. makes you happy organically.
Tell us about Franklin’s Main St and all the festivals and fairs.
I always joke that pretty soon Franklin is going to have a “It’s Tuesday” festival, because this town can make a party out of even the most ordinary of events. But it is fun to live in a community that celebrates art, history and family with the events. From Dickens of a Christmas to Main Street Festival to Pumpkinfest to Wine Down Main Street. There is always something going on.
Do you have an under-the-radar section of Williamson Co that you are excited to talk about?
Everyone thinks that Williamson County is all giant McMansions. But there are some amazing old houses, from pre-Civil War antebellum to post WWII bungalows. And while I love the retail on Main Street in downtown Franklin, I have some sort of special radar that is always beeping–I can find hidden retail treasure all over the county.
What October event are you most looking forward to?
I love Pumpkinfest. When you don’t have littles to take trick-or-treating, heading down to the square and people watching is so much fun.
Do you have a favorite brunch spot and favorite place for a dinner date in WillCo?
I am still amazed that people haven’t discovered Puckett’s Boat House for brunch. They offer an omelet station, amazing homemade biscuits, cornmeal dusted fried fish and some of the best jambalaya you will find. And if you really want to indulge, their Bloody Mary, served in a mason jar, is the best.
For dinner, I love Saffire at The Factory and Gray’s on Main.
What is something surprising about the county south of Nashville that you want people to know about?
Many don’t realize what a huge arts community lives here in Williamson County. Some of the most talented songwriters call Williamson County home. To me, the songwriters are the true celebrities in Nashville. I love hearing why someone wrote a song and hearing the original rendition. Add all of the visual arts and published authors that live here … I think folks will be surprised at how many creatives call Willco home.
Are Williamson Co women different than Nashville women?
I was standing in line at a local lunch place one day and I heard the woman behind me saying the place must be crowded “because all the women in Williamson County don’t work so they all go out to lunch.” As a Williamson County woman, I have worked from home, worked for a big corporation and been a stay-at-home mom. And I have lived, struggled, laughed through every phase of my life, right here in Williamson County.
Are women different here? At the end of the day, I think women here want the same thing women in East Nashville, or Belle Meade want: to be happy, healthy and feel connected to their family and community in a meaningful way.
Do you have a style philosophy?
Start where you are. Style is about unzipping and showing the inner you, so don’t wait until the outer you is perfect. Don’t have a come apart if you need to lose ten pounds or you can’t shop on an unlimited budget. Remember, those two statements apply to 99% of all women.
Most women just need to curate a style that works for their body type, age and lifestyle. Get the basics and then have fun with it.
Tell us some of the things you are excited to explore as the editor for StyleBlueprint’s newest market.
I have a long list! I cannot wait to showcase all the fascinating women that live here in the FACES series. And I am going to have to start ramping up my exercise because I intend to spotlight some great local dining opportunities.
We have been advised through the years that we need to have a separate SB for younger and older audiences, but we find we pull equally in all demographics from 25-64+. Why do you think it is that we’ve been able to pull so consistently?
I think the elements of SB, interesting people, events, shopping, art, entertainment and food, are presented with an eye toward local communities. If SB writes about a shop, the writer has been to the store, touched the goods, met the owner. Nothing is generic. And everyone, no matter age or gender, wants to feel connected to their community. I think SB connects us in a really fun, entertaining way.
We are putting a link to sign up for StyleBlueprint at the bottom of today’s post. Why should everyone reading this (even men! A full 30% of our readers are men!) should sign up?
Have you ever heard of FOMO? Fear of missing out? SB is the best way to stay on top of style, food, entertainment and incredibly talented people with new content everyday. Reading SB is sort of a bright, happy spot to start your day.
My love language is hospitality. StyleBlueprint is allowing me to act as a hostess to one of my favorite places on earth–my hometown and surrounding areas. I think folks are going to love what they find here.