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CHARLES FAUDREE…A Beautiful Inspiration!

The following entry was written the first week in December of 2013.  It has been stored on my desktop for the last couple of months until I was ready to share this part of the HYACINTH journey.    I am posting today because like every other day I am so very grateful for the late Charles Faudree.   I cannot think of a better second blog entry to follow the introduction of HYACINTH blog then to share with you the person who encouraged me to embark upon this endeavor in the first place.


Thursday, December 5, 2013

Today I have been inspired to write as I have just returned from the memorial service of my dear friend, mentor, hero, encourager, and the very reason for the existence of HYACINTH for the Home. . . interior design icon Charles Faudree. 

As evidenced by the standing room only packed church sanctuary,   I was one of the many people who were blessed enough to be a part of his life and to call him a friend.   Since his passing last week, I have been walking around with a lump in my throat and a sadness that settled in the very pit of my stomach.   During that time, I have been praying that I would not completely crumble into a million tiny pieces when compassionate friends and family would offer their condolences.  After all, I was not a “blood” relative,  did not see him all the time or even talk to him all the time, we lived in completely different states—I  felt like I needed to maintain composure so  as not to give another reason for the “zany” description of my personality .   So, I just kept putting one foot in front of the other during a typical hectic holiday season.   It is a strange feeling how life keeps moving when it seems like it should really be coming to a crashing halt.  

Can you think of a person who has been placed in your life that has altered the course of it for the better, been an encourager and loved you unconditionally not because they had to or benefitted in any way but just because?  That is who Charles Faudree was to me.  He believed in me and encouraged me to do something I never thought I could do…just because that was the kind of person he was.    As I sat silent and still in the church pew prior to and during what was the most glorious remembrance of a human life I have ever experienced, my sadness turned to joy, peace and inspiration.    I left wanting to be a better person and to strive to be more like the person Charles Faudree was to all who knew him.

He has many accolades beside his name, many coffee table books dedicated solely to his design talents, feature magazine articles galore and endless awards but at the end of the day those are the least of Charles Faudree’s legacy.  His most outstanding legacy is about the lives he has touched and made better and more beautiful because he was in it. His talents were merely the vehicle in which he did so.   His life made a positive difference in all the lives that were blessed to have him in it.   

I made it a point to sit silently in the pew for the hour prior to the service so as to observe those arriving and not to miss a moment of this time.  The guests that arrived were varied in all ways–all walks of life and styles.  There was a soft buzz as people visited amongst themselves before we were asked to be silent.  What I  overheard were sweet memories being shared about Charles and the exact feeling I had which was that I was amongst one of the most important people in his life if not THE most important person in his life.    That sentiment was conveyed throughout the whole service.  Last night when I placed my head on my pillow,   I reflected on what Charles life taught me.  He taught me that:

There are lots of beautiful things in this world.  He showed me that it is a gift to be able to enjoy them, create with them, share them, and use them to evoke an atmosphere and a feeling.  I remember him stating that decorating never got boring because there were always new things introduced in the world of interior design.  I have never forgotten when he said “Kate, just remember, there is enough for everyone.”  How true that is on so many levels.    But the most important thing he taught me that every life has value and that we should never let things get in the way of relationships.    

I loved knowing him.  My life is richer for having known him and there is a HYACINTH because of him.

The greatest blessing of HYACINTH is the friendships we are making with you our customer.   We look forward to being a part of your lives. This week HYACINTH will be sharing with you through Instagram, Facebook, and email blasts all things Charles Faudree.  We hope to share with you some of his favorite things and the wisdom he imparted to us.    Make sure you are following us and are on our email list so you do not miss a single inspiration.

Inspiration is a beautiful thing!


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Finally…a blog entry!

From L to R (top row): Kaye, Belen (gone but not forgotten), Ellie (off to college),
(bottom row) Margy, Kate, and Debbie *not pictured: Hutton


Welcome to HYACINTH for the Home and welcome to our blog!  It has been three years since the inception of the idea for our shop, two years since our opening and one year since our web-site has been up and running.  And, for one whole year there has been a page on our website entitled “Blog” with no entries creating a daunting blank space on the screen of the computer.   On many occasions attempts have been made to craft the initial post only to be halted by a mental block fed by the insecurity of not knowing where to start. So, after a year of contemplation, the simple conclusion was made that the best place to start is at the beginning….an introduction to HYACINTH the place fondly referred by all involved as “the haven”.

Our haven was born in the heart of one middle-aged wife and mother of three boys seeking an avenue to nurture a place in her soul that had been lost in the diagnosis of a chronic illness and life lived and defined by all things boys.  With the encouragement and support of her friend and mentor Charles Faudree, she took a risk, jumped out of the boat and tried her hand at something that incorporated her love for decorating, gift giving, beautiful things and the blessings that come with meeting new people and being a part of their lives.  It has been said that each day at the shop is like hosting a party in which no invitations were extended.   Every day we are expectantly waiting for those who come hoping to provide either inspiration, respite from hectic lives lived, or assistance in finding the perfect gift or maybe the accessory that helps to transform a house into a home.   In the short time we have been open; we have shared joys, anticipated resolutions, helped to carry burdens, and in one case literally saved a human life.  (We will save that story for a future post.)

I believe that the members of our Hyacinth family are no doubt part of a greater plan that for this owner would have been impossible to imagine on her own.  HYACINTH is represented by Kaye, a retired school teacher, stylish mother of two as well as a hip and energetic grandmother.  She is gratefully looked upon as the rock and fortress that holds us all together having abundant wisdom for those of us who are experiencing situations she has already navigated and conquered.  She teaches the rest of us how to live life and live it well.   She always reminds us that we can never quit laughing.  As the master of organization and numbers she keeps the haven afloat.    There is sweet Margy,   mother of adorable young Weezie. (Be sure to be on the lookout for Weezie to subtly appear in some of our “Where’s Weezie?”  photo posts.)    Margy is routinely belting out show tunes as if she has just stepped out onto the Broadway stage to perform for her adoring fans.  She has the gift of style and decorating, constantly scouring blogs and staying attentive to the trends but never losing her eye for timeless elegance.  She is a natural at creating beautiful and inviting spaces.  When one thinks of Margy, they think of joy, a steadfast joy that comes deep from within and never dependent upon her circumstances.   Then there is our angel Debbie who epitomizes style, beauty and grace.  The mother of 4 and a recent empty-nester, she is our go to girl for gift wrapping which when completed is sometimes more beautiful than the piece she has wrapped.  In contrast to her gifts, she is no doubt as beautiful on the inside as she is on the outside.  She tries to keep us all above the fray, never speaking ill of anyone and always a lady but never above laughing at herself and poking fun with others.  And, our savior Hutton, a college sophomore who spent the summer getting us versed on the ends and outs of social media as well ensuring that we stay current with youthful trends.    She reminds me of a modern day Audrey Hepburn.  She was born with the kind of natural poise that one cannot be taught.     Finally, there is me, not last but hopefully the least of these, Kate, owner and resident dreamer who is described by the rest as “zany”.   Sometimes the excitement of the day comes with wondering which Kate is going to show up today.  And today, I am “grateful Kate, grateful for this beautiful place and these women who inspire me daily to be a better, stronger and more genuine me.  And, we are all grateful for our families and friends who have encouraged and supported our endeavors to make our haven a place we can share with others.

There is a simple well-known poem entitled “Hyacinths to Feed Thy Soul” that has served as the inspiration for our haven. It was written by the 13th Century Persian poet, Sadi.  It is an eloquent expression of the Biblical man who does not live by bread alone; though in the Biblical version it means that one should also live by God’s word—a moral spiritual life not just a physical one (ArtGrok).  It also serves as a reminder to see the beauty in life when things feel hopeless.  As one so adequately stated, “Concentration on the beauty of the hyacinth, its smell, its color, the perfection of its flowers…takes away the stress, “feeds the soul” and helps make life a bit brighter (posted by Rev. Linda on Words from the Heart Blog) .”    It is our sincerest desire for HYACINTH to be the place where one can come to feed their soul and make their day, their home, and their relationships a bit brighter.   We invite you to join us in taking time to find the beauty in life no matter your circumstances.   We look forward to sharing the inspirations we encounter throughout our ordinary and sometimes extraordinary days in future posts.   Until then, don’t forget to buy Hyacinths to feed the soul.

“If of thy mortal goods thou art bereft.

And from the slender store,

Two loaves alone to thee are left,

Sell one, and with the dole,

Buy Hyacinths to feed thy soul.”

Sadi, 13th Century poet