Thursday, August 22, 2013

My Delta: Art in the City Apartment, Happy Birthday Delta Bohemian Guest House

It is no secret, 
I spend a lot of time in Clarksdale,
 in the Mississippi Delta,
 my birthplace and home of The Blues. 

I LOVE it here.

I first blogged about
Clarksdale, Mississippi, in 2011 HERE
after I went up for a visit 
with my former Delta Academy classmate Madge Marley Howell of 

Madge and I at the Delta Bohemian Gift Shop
233 Delta Avenue, Clarksdale, MS
We are donning Bohemian Love Wraps

Well, one thing led to another
 between my bird of a feather 
Madge and me, 
and we have worked on 
several exciting joint projects since then, with plans for lots more! 
We want to really make a difference in 
bringing the shine back to 
Clarksdale, once known as the 
"Golden Buckle" of the old Cotton Belt. 

I had these custom signs, using vintage hardware and assorted paraphernalia,
made for the Delta Bohemian and MS Design Maven
What a partnership!
You will see the Delta Bohemian one hanging in the Delta Bohemian Guest House living room

Last week, it was the  

and Madge and I are kicking off 
another joint project.

I will be a permanent columnist on
The Delta Bohemian
with a column called 
"My Delta"
with a link to MS Design Maven
and Madge will do guest posts here 
from time to time.

I am kicking it all off with a series
called My Delta: Art in the City Apartment,
 with this post
celebrating the first birthday of the
Delta Bohemian Guest House. 

 Madge and her husband Billy Howell
decided last year in May to convert their 
early 20th century cook's house,
which was an apartment for years,  
into a 
a short term rental property
just two blocks from downtown Clarksdale.

The former apartment turned Delta Bohemian Guest House
during renovations

They were calling it the
 Delta Bohemian Guest House,
and I was thrilled to be asked to 
design the project.

We totally renovated the 
charming little ca.1920 house, 
bringing it back to life, 
in a fun, colorful, authentic, and VERY
Delta Bohemian style.

As I often do, I started work on the project 
by selecting a color palette that I felt was in keeping with the style and feel 
we wanted to convey.  
The colors were actually inspired by several Abstract Agrarian paintings which I had had for years and had been 
saving for the perfect project.
THIS was finally the one. 

At the time I had no idea that Madge had chosen new colors for her
 Delta Bohemian logo.

When I arrived in Clarksdale with my Benjamin Moore colors all 
picked out for Madge to look at, unbelievably they matched her new logo almost exactly.

The color scheme for the Delta Bohemian Guest House, all Benjamin Moore colors.
And all purchased from Winkel's in downtown Clarksdale.
You will not want to miss the Winkel's fabulous city apartment
coming soon!

The palette represented colors that remind me of my beloved Delta:

Greens, "Chartreuse" and "Grassy Fields", for the crops growing in the fields

Gold, "Semolina", for grains and the 
omnipresent golden sun glow

Denimy Blue/Gray, "Steep Cliff Gray", for the river waters, and the Blues

Red, "Rosy Apple" for the color of the old farm buildings I grew up with and 
the many deep red sunsets which we were told as children represented 
coming fair weather,
"Red Sky at Night Sailor's Delight" 

My first planning session in the Delta Bohemian Guest House.
Renovations were just getting under way, and I had selected several paintings, Abstract Agrarian ones, which echoed our bright, happy, Delta Bohemian color scheme.
Of course we toasted the colors with a glass of wine!

More of the colorful artwork I selected for the house and
 the vintage mushroom light we found for the breakfast area.

We knew we were on the right color path! 
We were, as Madge and I like to say, "Rolling"!

Many late nights, quite a few of which included both of us driving large 
trailers full of furnishings across 
county and state lines, 

Lots of architectural salvage and furniture loaded in Jackson and headed for Clarksdale.

Billy and my Daddy getting ready to load another trailer at my warehouse in Jackson.
Daddy was gone just a few days later.
I was so glad he got to meet Madge and Billy.

rendezvous in parking lots,

Jane Yandall Nalty, a Delta Princess, delivered the painting of her
 that famed portraitist and Madge's cousin
Marshall Bouldin had painted of her in the 1980's
You will see this painting in the "Delta Princess" room.

and text messages ad nauseum later,
we welcomed our very first guests to the 
Delta Bohemian Guest House just eight weeks later in time for last year's 
Sunflower Festival!

And now, unbelievably, a year has already whooshed by, and we celebrate the 
Delta Bohemian Guest House's 
first birthday.

Happy First Birthday during the Sunflower Festival,
Delta Bohemian Guest House!

The same wonderful Louisiana couple who were our first guests last summer
have returned.

Ralph and Rosalind
Our very first Delta Bohemian Guests for last year's Sunflower Festival
and our guests again for this year's Sunflower Festival 

The Living Room

Guided by the Abstract Agrarian art, we began
 to acquire funky, bohemian pieces for each of the rooms at the
 Delta Bohemian Guest House.
This stash was for the living room.

We found these chairs at Libby Story in Jackson.
This is one of Madge's favorite stores.

I found the rustic basket light for the living room at
one of my favorite antique markets.

We custom finished all the drapery hardware with
 Benjamin Moore's colored Deck Stain for a weathered finish

We hung the horseshoe over the front door for good luck.
Never hang it the other way.
Your good luck will drain away.

These wheel tables in the living room that Madge and I
 found in Memphis are some of my favorites,
My sister Susan, who collects hides, sent us the cowhide rug

Living Room art by local artist Joey Young
and a vintage ceiling tile representing the Delta Bohemian/MS Design Maven

These drapery panels are cotton dropcloth banded
with one of my bold Swedish linens.
The graphic pillows are also my Swedish linens.

One of the Agrarian Abstracts that inspired the colors in the house

The Kitchen and Breakfast Room

Claxton did just about everything we needed in the house 
as far as carpentry is concerned.

More of the inspiration art 

A vintage yellow industrial stool we picked for the kitchen

I used vintage aprons for the curtain over the kitchen sink, very vintage Delta.

More vintage aprons hang by the back door.
The breakfast drape is also one of my Swedish linens.
The vintage table was built by a Blues artist.

The red bucket full of cotton in the kitchen is a salute to the original owner's 
saloon in nearby Jonestown, which was called the Bloody Bucket.

The wise owl stands guard on the top of the refrigerator in front of
another Abstract Agrarian painting.
Notice that the ceilings are all painted the same colors
 as the walls to add height to the rather low ceilings.

The mirror by the back door reflects the vintage apron curtain,
It is one of a collection of vintage mirrors we used in the house.

Vintage Croquet in the Delta Bohemian Garden perhaps?

The Stairway

We painted on the runner.
I have plans to leopardize it.

The stairway lit at night is very dramatic and inviting.

We used many of the antique mirrors at the foot of the stairs.

Watch your head on the low clearance!
It is marked with fringe and an arrow.

The Master
"Green Acres"

Denis paints the "Green Acres" our Benjamin Moore Chartreuse from Winkel's

We were able to find a great vintage fixture for the "Green Acres" Master.

And vintage lamps

The old rake was my Daddy's, a gift from me
hung over the "Triple Haystack" painting

The authentic Delta Green Acres view from the Green Acres window

The Spare
"Delta Princess"

The inspiration painting and Swedish fabrics 
leaving the warehouse for the workroom and ultimately
the "Delta Princess" room

The Marshall Bouldin painting of 
Jane Nalty Yandall
that she gave us in the Brown's Framing parking lot rendezvous
She is the "Delta Princess"

A bit of an art aside hear,
 the famed Delta portraitist 
Marshall Bouldin III was Madge's cousin.

His first portrait, painted of Madge's 
great-grandfather Marshall Bouldin, hangs next door in Madge's house 
the Salone de Boheme

Madge's Great-Grandfather Marshall Bouldin
This painting of him hung in Delta Wholesale in Clarksdale for years
He was the President of the company

The hands in the painting are actually those of Marshall's father

Now back to the Guest House . . .

The Modern Swedish fixture in the 
"Delta Princess" room

The lace covered closet of the "Delta Princess" room
contains a treasure trove of vintage princess "dress up" clothes
and a few BIG surprises

We used many clever doorstops in the house!

The Bath

We played with many tile combinations for
 the completely renovated bath

Madge and I spent several hours selecting a new potty and hardware

Clarksdale is a MUSICAL place, full of love

We used lots of glass

And glass blocks to let some sun into the landlocked bathroom

The Garden

The RED Garden Gate so reminiscent of the old farm building red

Sunflower River  Blues Fest 2012 on the Delta Bohemian Guest House Patio

Hope you will come join us soon in Clarksdale, in the Mississippi Delta, on the banks of the Sunflower River at the
Delta Bohemian Guest House
for the full Delta Experience!
You MUST experience our ART!

I will be wearing 
OPI's Clarksdale nail polish
"Get in the Expresso Lane"
on my toes.

And of course my Delta Convict t-shirt or my
Bohemian Love Wrap.

I AM a Delta Convict
Delta Convict Tshirts available at the Delta Bohemian Gift Shop
on Delta Avenue in Clarksdale

Brought to you by the Delta Bohemian and the MS Design Maven

Click HERE for the
 Delta Bohemian Guest House

Click HERE for the Delta Bohemian

photo credits:  Marilyn Trainor Storey, Madge Marley Howell, Mary Brock Bobo

1 comment :

  1. That's one really bold colour pallet! I'm glad that everything came together so well too! A lot of the pieces here really manage to tie things up together and I think the apartment will do quite well - that's coming from an estate agent too! ;)


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