Guide to Gracious Living: Episodes 7-10

Dempsey & Carroll has long been known as the arbiter of good taste and social graces. Now, as we near our 150th anniversary, we’re creating IGTV videos on how to live graciously in today’s world. Follow us on Instagram @dempseycarroll to stay up to date, and be sure to let us know if you have ideas for future videos! Please enjoy episodes 7-10 of our Guide to Gracious Living to learn more about #makingtraditionsmodern

 

Gracious Living: A “When-to” Guide for Wedding Paper

From save the dates to ceremony programs, we’ve provided our tips on how to have a seamless workflow for perfectly timed wedding papers.

 

Gracious Living: Calling Cards Then & Now Part 1 – Late 1800s

In the days when ladies might receive visitors during hours they were known to be “at home,” the calling card served to announce a visitor to the house. In Part 1 of Calling Cards Then & Now, we’ve shared insight into calling card etiquette from the late 1800s and how they were used when Dempsey & Carroll was founded!

 

Gracious Living: Calling Cards Then & Now Part 2 – 21st Century

Today, the etiquette guidelines for calling cards are no longer relevant! In Part 2 of Calling Cards Then & Now, we’ve made traditions modern by sharing just a few ways that calling cards can be used in the 21st Century.

 

Gracious Living: Return Address Etiquette and Inspiration

Whether you prefer a classic typestyle or custom design, we’ve shared a few thoughts on how to present your return address on envelopes!

Spotlight on Nicole Fuller

Nicole Fuller, founder and principal of Nicole Fuller Interiors, is an award-winning luxury designer specializing in sophisticated, highly customized residential and commercial projects in the US and abroad. In honor of our new collaboration, we had the pleasure of sitting down with Nicole to learn more about her work and inspirations.

We are thrilled to bring Nicole’s contemporary, yet timeless aesthetic to our paper with the Key, Stripes, and Feather correspondence card sets! #nicolefullerxdempsey

 

How did you get your start as an Interior Designer? 

I love what I do and I fell into it very organically! I never went to school for it or studied it in any formal manner. I was living in London and designed my home which ended up getting a lot of press; people then started reaching out and inquiring if I could decorate for them.

When I reflect on it, though, I had been studying design my entire childhood. My mother was a multidisciplinary artist and raised me in a very creative environment. She taught me about art, architecture, interiors, and she also fostered a deep appreciation in me for the natural world and organic forms.

 

As a respected name in the design world, you’ve been awarded many prestigious honors in your field. Was there a specific moment early on in your career when you knew that you had “made it” in the industry?

I don’t think there is such a thing as “making it.”  I’m blessed to do what I love and I’m humbled to be recognized among other inspiring, talented creatives. I’m not one for resting on laurels– I keep my nose down and work into the future. Truthfully, I’m just getting started.

 

How have your travels inspired your work? Are there any cities or destinations that have had the most impact?

Travel feeds my creativity. I love going to Lamu, Kenya for textiles, Paris for antiques, and Italy for fine linens and furniture. London is my home away from home, and I return often to source art and enjoy the city’s incredible array of galleries.

 

Do you have any favorite projects that you’ve worked on recently? Is there anything coming up that you’re excited about?

I’m currently working on a spectacular Malibu project nestled in a private beachfront cove. We are gutting it to the studs and rebuilding, which I revel in doing. Moreover, my client is an avid art collector and I am curating a very important art collection for the property. I also recently signed on to design an iconic New York City hotel. I can’t go into the details just yet, but let’s say it boasts a dazzling park view.

 

We’d love to hear about your inspiration behind our stationery collaboration! How does each product speak to your design aesthetic? 

This collection marries my interest in organic, natural forms and my eternal fascination with art. The rainbow design (Stripes) is a celebratory homage to Frank Stella and his genius with shape, color, and balance. I am always inspired by his body of work.

The natural patterns and brilliant colors of nature form the other two parts of the collection (Feather and Key). Feathers, which the Navajo believed were good luck, have such a beautiful and complex pattern and texture to them. Lapis and malachite have the most intense color– but they are also from the earth. They represent pure distillations of color.

 

Where is your ideal place to sit down and write a letter? 

At certain times of day, my dining room table is flooded with gorgeous light. I will sit at the head, peer out the window, and find inspiration to write my letters.

 

What are your favorite ways to spend your downtime when you’re not working?

What downtime? My favorite way to spend any free moment (a rarity) is with my husband, our 3 Maine Coon cats, and my dearest friends.

 

Thank you for taking the time to chat with us, Nicole! Learn more about Nicole’s work on her website and Instagram @nicolefullerinteriors.   Shop the collection on our site here

 

A peek into Nicole’s world

 

Our Annual Sale 2019: Frequently Asked Questions

The beginning of a new year means that it’s time to start things off with a new note!  That said, we’re thrilled to share some answers to some frequently asked questions regarding Our Annual Sale (the perfect opportunity to update your stationery wardrobe with new notes of your very own).

DSC_7634_name

 

What is the Dempsey & Carroll Annual Sale?

Our most popular correspondence cards are offered at special pricing during the month of January.  Pricing of $295 (regularly $480) includes 100 #3 3-ply engraved correspondence cards, 100 plain envelopes, and a new one-line engraving plate.  Not sure what any of this means? Don’t worry, we’ve done the heavy-lifting for you. You’ll be sure to impress anyone with this classic choice.

 

Can I use any ink color or typestyle for my new cards?

This year, we are offering a selection 9 ink colors and 9 typestyles as part of the sale pricing. The 2019 offerings are listed below and on our website!

Correspondence Card Sale 2019 Offerings

 

What if I already have an engraving plate that I’d like to use? Is there an additional discount?

You are more than welcome to use an existing name plate for your sale order. Your existing plate can be in any typestyle.  There is no additional discount offered when you use an existing plate.

 

Can I add a return address to my envelopes?

Yes, you can certainly have your envelopes engraved with a new or existing return address plate.  The pricing for a quantity of 100 engraved cards and engraved envelopes with an existing return address is $490 (regularly $745). A new return address plate can be purchased at our normal pricing for an additional $190.

DSC_7659_name - Copy

 

Will I receive a proof for my sale order? 

A design proof is not included with your sale order, though you may choose to purchase a proof with your order for an additional $10.

 

I am planning on using my cards for more formal occasions like sympathy notes and professional correspondence. Do you have any ink color suggestions?

We would suggest using a more neutral ink color like Black, Regent Blue, Baron Gray, or Hunter Green for formal correspondence.

DSC_7651_name

Our Annual Sale is available through January 31, 2019
Please feel free to email us with any questions: info@dempseyandcarroll.com 

 

A Look Back at our 2018 Partnerships

As we look back at another great year at Dempsey & Carroll, our partnerships remain some of the most memorable highlights. 2018 brought several new collaborators into the Dempsey & Carroll mix, as well as some of our old friends who we were delighted to work with again. Our collaborations allow us to push ourselves in new directions – experimenting with new techniques and designs. We are thrilled to have had the opportunity to work alongside these visionary and truly wonderful brands this year. 

 

Caitlin McGauley 

Having worked with Caitlin in 2017 through our partnership with The Maryn we were thrilled when she decided to introduce stationery to her own business. Her whimsical, bright, beautiful designs have been favorites of ours since we began working with her in 2017 and we absolutely adored translating some of her famous animals and animal-inspired prints into stationery. Who can resist her charming fox or a pink cheetah with red spots?!

Shop the collection here

 

Sister Parish Design 

We have been following Sister Parish Design for years now as admirers of their stunning prints, so you can imagine our delight when they approached us about developing a line of Sister Parish-inspired stationery. As the granddaughter and great-granddaughter of Sister Parish herself, Susan and Eliza Crater lead their amazing brand and embody Sister’s vision. We took two iconic Parish Hadley prints, Serendipity and Desmond, and highlighted these motifs as classic stationery sets.

Shop the collection here

 

Whispering Angel 

Who doesn’t love a little something pink? We absolutely adored working on this collaboration with the winery behind our favorite rosé. Two charming angels engraved in Whispering Angel’s signature pink adorn the top of the luxurious 4-ply note cards we created for this wonderful winery. Time to drink pink!

Shop the collection here

 

Life Itself 

We partnered with the team behind Amazon Studios’ Life Itself this year to create a set of stationery reflecting two of the beautiful locations featured in this film. The stationery set showcases New York City and Carmona, Spain alongside a charming engraving of a fountain pen. The collaboration was inspired by the reasons we write, and connecting people in places thousands of miles away from one another.

Shop the collection here

 

Lingua Franca 

We could never in our wildest dreams have imagined that one day we would be selling stationery that had been embroidered and even more so,  embroidered with the coolest phrases like “booyah” and “everyday i’m hustlin’,” and we couldn’t be more thrilled about it. Hi, it’s us, Dempsey & Carroll, a 140-year-old stationery brand just selling cards with Rick Ross lyrics on them! How cool?! We loved every second of working with Rachelle of Lingua Franca and her truly amazing team. We are so happy to be able to offer these amazing note cards and delighted to partner with Lingua Franca, a company whose work we admire and are proud to be affiliated with.

Shop the collection here

 

J.McLaughlin

Third time’s a charm (though we loved the first and second ones too!)! This holiday season we released our third collaboration with famed ready-to-wear brand, J.McLaughlin. We shifted towards playful prints inspired by the season and created by artist John Pirman paired with cheery engraved phrases like “What a bright time,” and “Cheers.” We’re certainly cheersing a few of our friends this December with these note cards

Shop the collection here

Brand Friend Spotlight: Jon Prince

With the launch of our Brand Friend program, we’ve been able to connect with others who love the art of the handwritten note, our products, and our brand. If this sounds interesting to you, learn more about how to be a Dempsey & Carroll Brand Friend on our website!

It is our pleasure to introduce you to Jon Prince as part of our Brand Friend Spotlight series. Based in Pittsburgh, Jon is a world traveler, candy expert, long-time Dempsey & Carroll fan, and more!IMG_4912

How did you learn about Dempsey & Carroll? 

While attending boarding school in the early 80’s, I took a trip to Washington, D.C. and stumbled upon Dempsey & Carroll (Editor’s note – Our only Dempsey & Carroll store is in New York City, though we used to have a Washington, D.C store as well).  Ever the fan of the written word, I treated myself to a few boxes of beautifully made stationery – I still remember that it had a Jockey motif – and the brand has remained a favorite ever since.

 

Do you remember the first letter that you sent on your new stationery?

I recall I sent my parents a letter on my new equestrian emblazoned stationery, thanking them for letting me put the purchase on their charge. Kidding aside, if memory serves me, it was to a woman in Pittsburgh that I had a crush on who always commented that I used “beautiful stationery.”

What’s the most memorable handwritten note you’ve received? 

As a young man, I received a note from Gary Trudeau, author of Doonesbury. I also received a handwritten note from Walter Annenberg which I treasure and is tucked into the desk blotter in my office.

Where is your favorite place to catch up on correspondence?  

I enjoy catching up on correspondence at home in my study, often in the early morning hours. There is something cathartic about putting pen to paper while the house is quiet and life is at a temporary standstill

Pictured below, I have the Annenberg letter along with a letter from the chef of Tailevant Restaurant in Paris wishing me a happy 40th birthday (amazing meal). The wine vintage chart given to me by a dear friend and mentor who is deceased.

IMG_4905

Some of the coolest mementos on my desk include the actual diploma given to JFK when he got his honorary degree in 1963 from University of Galway, Ireland as well as a picture of my dad in basic training in the 50’s.

IMG_4906

We know that you have a pretty sweet job! What is your role at Candy Favorites and what are your main goals at work?

I am the President of CandyFavorites.com, the first online candy store. I am also the Vice-President of McKeesport Candy Co., which is the oldest wholesale candy company in the nation!

Robert Rauschenberg once said that his role was to “work in the gap between art and life.” I wear many hats, but my job is to bridge the gap between old world customer service and the impersonal nature of the internet to create an online experience that goes beyond selling a commodity.

IMG_6533

An insider look at the Candy Favorites warehouse

What does “making traditions modern” mean to you?  

Much like running my business, I love finding ways to keep old world traditions alive while embracing changes in social mores and technology. I loving sending handwritten notes to customers, and I always send notes to friends the day after a party or special meal.

Where business is concerned, most transactions occur on the “great electronic divide” and you can’t imagine the response when someone receives a well-written, witty note. It is a personal connection and bridge to a bygone era when saying “thank you” was the norm and not an exception.

I also have a stationery travel set and nothing is better, or less expected, than slipping a note under a friend or family member’s hotel room door or sharing your appreciation to a hotel, restaurant, or venue where you had a special experience.

I have received a few “thank you” notes via text and consider it a faux pas as it lacks effort or permanence. There is something intimate about choosing appropriate stationery, finding an elegant stamp, and making the effort to find a mail box.  Often, effort is as much appreciated as outcome.

What are a few of your favorite things that you do in your spare time?

I collect art and wine and I love to exercise, read, travel, and keep up with my two boys (aged 9 and 15).

My wife and I recently traveled to Cuba which we adored. It was akin to taking a step back in time and is a place where even the most mundane subjects make for beautiful photography. The colors are breathtaking and the people charming and hospitable!

Most summers, we take a family trip to Villefranche-sur-Mer in the South of France and were thrilled to see our favorite beaches emblazoned on the lining of the envelopes of your Cote D’Azur stationery.

DSC_6703

As an avid swimmer, I sent a note from this collection to a friend and drew a line showing where I swam across the bay! This, along with your baseball motif cards, served as a call to action for our boys to get into the habit of putting pen to paper!

 

Brand Friend Spotlight: Tadd Casner

With the launch of our Brand Friend program, we’ve been able to connect with others who love the art of the handwritten note, our products, and our brand. If this sounds interesting to you, learn more about how to be a Dempsey & Carroll Brand Friend on our website!

We’re thrilled to introduce you to Tadd Casner as part of our new Brand Friend Spotlight series. Based in Reading, Pennsylvania, Tadd is a Gilded Age historian, architecture enthusiast, writer, and more!IMG_4333

 

How did you learn about Dempsey & Carroll?  Were there any particular products that drew you in?

I actually found your firm a couple years ago while looking for a proper engraved calling card.  I used my Emily Post etiquette book (1924 edition) as my guide!

When ordering my calling cards I knew that I only wanted my full name centered in the middle and my street address only (not city & state) in smaller font size in the lower right corner.  Very old fashioned!  I live in a city, albeit much smaller than New York!  The font style and card stock thickness were very important to me.  The calling cards that Dempsey & Carroll produced for me are perfect in every way!

IMG_1114

 

How do you make traditions modern? We’d love to hear more about the work that you do in your historic neighborhood!

My husband and I live in our 1908 Queen Anne twin townhouse here in the Centre Park Historic District here in Reading, PA.  The Centre Park Historic District, Inc. is a volunteer neighborhood organization that was established in 1982.  Its mission is “to promote architectural preservation and enhance neighborhood living.”  We have various events throughout the year including our annual Gourmet Garden Tour and Christmas House Tour.  We promote our events on our website as well as on our Facebook page.  In 2008, “This Old House Magazine” named Centre Park Historic District one of the top ten neighborhoods in America to purchase an historic fixer-upper.

I am now in my third year of serving as President of the Centre Park District. Truthfully, I became President because few people were interested in undertaking the task, though it has been a rewarding experience so far!

 

When did you know that you wanted to be a historian? Are there any particular time periods that interest you the most?

I’ve been fascinated by history and architecture since childhood. I suppose I was born with a talent for it!  My main focus is on The Gilded Age in America and Britain because I’ve always loved the style of that period. I can remember reading the same books over and over again and being obsessed with photographs taken during that era when I was young.IMG_0397

 

Are there any interesting projects that you’re working on now?

I am currently working on writing a Biography of J.H. Sternberg, a steel magnate here in Reading during the late nineteenth century and early twentieth century.  He was a very important pioneer in the iron and steel industry, as he patented machinery to produce nuts and bolts.  For seven years,  I actually resided in the home he had constructed.  The home, “Stirling,” sits on a five-acre property in the Centre Park neighborhood.

I am the co-host for two live TV programs at our community television station. One of the shows covers the Centre Park Historic District events, and the other show, “The Passing Scene,” is focused on local history in general.

 

Where is your favorite place to write and catch up on correspondence?

As we are restoring our home, I’m limited to writing at a small built-in desk in one of our dressing rooms. I also use the dining table in our restored dining room, though I am currently looking for an Edwardian period writing desk. IMG_1989

I love writing letters and notes. In our modern era of texts and emails, a handwritten missive seems so much more special and permanent.

Brand Friend Spotlight: Kerrie Kelly

With the launch of our Brand Friend program, we’ve been able to connect with others who love the art of the handwritten note, our products, and our brand. If this sounds interesting to you, learn more about how to be a Dempsey & Carroll Brand Friend on our website!

Based in California, Kerrie Kelly is an award-winning interior designer, author and contributor, product designer and multi-media consultant, and more! On Kerrie’s trip to NYC last weekend, she paid us a visit at our flagship store on the Upper East Side to work on a bespoke stationery project and see our latest collections.

How did you learn about Dempsey & Carroll? Do you have plans for your next set of bespoke stationery with us?

I was born in California and my husband was born on New York’s Lower East Side. When we would come to visit New York (we live in California now), we would each share our version of the city. My husband would take me to his church, his school, and Katz’s Deli. Having worked for Ralph Lauren Home Collection, my version of the city was all about Park Avenue, the Polo Bar, and MoMA. While enjoying those neighborhoods, I came across Dempsey & Carroll and fell in love with the quality, history, and brand story. That translated into creating bespoke stationery for my husband, and ultimately for myself. I am currently putting together a bespoke collection that highlights my Blonde Fox accessory collection with GO Home, Ltd. It will be a flat card with a navy blue border and a side profile of a golden fox leaping.

 

How do you make traditions modern?

I believe traditions can be made modern by adding our own personal spin to family tradition along the way; add modern glassware to a china set, cover a family heirloom in a modern looking fabric, or use an updated font or stamp on a traditionally patterned card or note.

 

Tell us more about your love of history and how you incorporate vintage pieces into your work and own home!

When it comes to history, I love to celebrate my family’s heritage. Our dining room is painted a deep navy blue and has a wall of white shelving that features my great grandpa’s trumpet, my in-laws’ wedding photos, my grandma’s old encyclopedia set,  and my grandpa’s shaving kit and camera. Being surrounded by these pieces in a place where we entertain and enjoy friends and family is so comforting. We reminisce about so many good times while creating even more!

Where is your favorite place to write and catch up on correspondence?

I love to write in my home at a secretary that I designed for one of my furniture collections. It has several letters posted with special messages from dear friends and family. It also has my stamps, beloved pens and letter openers. To be surrounded by my favorite things always makes for better letter writing.

What are a few of your favorite things to do in your spare time?

As an interior designer and product developer, I appreciate unique designs, rich experiences, and quality goods. I love practicing yoga, visiting art museums, enjoying special dinners in the city with friends, and taking weekend trips to nearby Napa Valley. These experiences will always keep my creative juices flowing while providing the opportunity to meet new people (and send more correspondence!).

 

Thank you for sharing with us, Kerrie! Be sure to check out Kerrie’s Instagram (@kerrielkelly) and website to learn more about her work and travels. 

Learn more about being a Dempsey & Carroll Brand Friend!

140 Years of Dempsey & Carroll

In honor of Dempsey & Carroll’s 140th Birthday, our CEO, Lauren Marrus, wanted to share a few words on how we are continuing the legacy of our founders while making traditions modern. Cheers to 140 years! 

140 years ago today, two men, John Dempsey, a talented engraver, and George Carroll, a savvy businessman came together to found Dempsey & Carroll.  Their mission still remains at the core of our business today:  to provide luxury writing papers along with advice on etiquette and proper decorum in a variety of social settings.  To the founders, the social institutions of correspondence and etiquette were inseparable, and they saw Dempsey & Carroll as the ideal marriage of the two.

moodboard.jpg

Today, we celebrate both how far the business has come in these 140 years, and how dedicated we remain to our craft – many of our presses from the early 20th century are still in use today.  And, while, we are no longer on 14th Street in Union Square, we still call New York City our home.

Our team today uses the core values that John Dempsey and George Carroll put in place over fourteen decades ago to work together with our clients to make traditions modern.  The calling cards of John Dempsey and George Carroll’s time meant to announce a visitor are now used to share Instagram handles.

Formal dinners, once a regular event, are now more relaxed and seating arrangements and place cards are more about lively conversation and table adornment than matchmaking and social status.

DSC_6785

The impression of the handwritten note on the finest engraved paper has never been more meaningful.

jackiegreaney12.27

 

We thank you for being a part of our history and we invite you to join us in making traditions modern for many years to come.

— Lauren Marrus, CEO of Dempsey & Carroll

Making Traditions Modern: Summer Entertaining

Summer is a time to enjoy the weather and move the party outside, whether for a backyard barbeque, seaside soirée, or rooftop cocktail hour. Earlier in August, we worked with five of our partners to showcase how they would style their ideal summer dinner party.

First, they set the scene by sharing their handwritten invitation on one of our Destination: Seaside note cards– Capri, Côte d’Azur, or the Hamptons. The following week, they styled their corresponding place cards (Lemon, Compass Rose, or Lobster) in the context of how they would use them for a party. We loved seeing how everyone put their own twist on entertaining!

With that, we hope you’re inspired to close out your summer in a noteworthy way! Share your entertaining favorites on Instagram by tagging @dempseycarroll and #makingtraditionsmodern.

Dempsey Carroll x Jackie Greaney - Summer Entertaining Post 1Dreaming up the perfect backyard lobster party with Dempsey & Carroll’s adorable lobster & lighthouse Destination note cards– checkered tablecloths, buoy centerpieces, lots of sunflowers, and a build-your-own-lobster roll station! Anything I’m missing? Let me know if you’ll be in Maine on August 14th!

Jackie Greaney for Dempsey Carroll Entertaining Post 2Crack em! Fill em! Roll em! Every backyard soirée needs a Build-Your-Own Lobster Roll station, don’t you think? Dempsey & Carroll place cards make it easy to mark out the station’s steps, and I love the little engraved lobsters on these! 

— Jackie, @jackiegreaney

 

harlowejames post 1These Capri inspired note cards from Dempsey & Carroll make the perfect invite for a summertime soiree. The engraved lemon detail on the card paired with the print on the inside of the envelope will get guests excited about the theme before they even get to the party! 

harlowejames post 2Instead of using standard place setting cards, switch it up by writing little notes to your guests. These lemon place cards from the Dempsey & Carroll Destination: Capri collection are the perfect addition to the table and tie the whole theme together!

— Chrissy, @_harlowejames

 

meaghanmurray 1“I couldn’t be shellfish and not share this with you” -said my Dempsey & Carroll party invitation 

meaghanmurray 2What the shell! Let’s eat some oysters. Thanks to my Dempsey & Carroll place cards for hooking up my oyster situation. Long Reach or Shore Island, anyone?

–Meaghan, @meaghanmurray

 

Traditions are everything and whenever I travel abroad I love collecting unique stamps to send notes, postcards and in this case invitations back home to my friends and family. A few weeks ago my family and I traveled up the Coast of Italy and on the way, I purchased stamps at Pompeii, Rome, or to sum it up, basically each stop. Once we arrived at our final destination, Florence, I had accumulated enough stamps to send out my annual Lobster Boil invitations to my friends far and wide. I figured this was a fun way for my guests to receive a little piece of Italy straight to their mailbox, along with a piece of New England thanks to these Dempsey & Carroll Seaside Correspondence Cards. I mean, you couldn’t find a more fitting invitation card for a lobster broil even if you tried. Now I want to hear from you all, does anyone else love writing letters back home when they travel 

A New England Summer isn’t complete until you’ve eaten your weight in dock & dine lobster rolls. Each summer I’m in charge of creating a unique lobster-themed table setting, for when my family and I head down the river, to our favorite dockable lobster joint. This year’s setting was designed around these Dempsey & Carroll Lobster place cards! Originally, I took inspiration from the bright red lobster featured on the place cards by incorporating similarly shaded napkins for a pop of color, amongst the natural tones of cream and brown. Creating these tablescapes is an annual tradition I adore, and while I do love seeing how excited our guests get when they dock up and find their names written on a place card, I’m really just going the extra mile in hopes of winning the annual table setting contest. Fingers crossed, this could be my year! 

— Aubrey, @thecoastalconfidence

 

post 1aWe don’t know about you, but one thing that we look forward to at dinner parties is the appetizers. Our dream dinner party would consist of a happy hour with different charcuterie boards and a variety of apps. What’s your dream dinner party? 

post 2a

Can’t resist oysters, especially while at a dinner party. What’s your favorite thing to eat during cocktail hour? 

— R’el and Marcus, @theplaceiwastellingyouabout

Spotlight on Sister Parish Design

In honor of our new collaboration with Sister Parish Design, we had the pleasure of interviewing its President and Co-Founder, Susan Crater. We learned about her decorating style, inspirations, and the lasting influence of her grandmother, legendary Designer Sister Parish.

We are thrilled to bring the Parish-Hadley design legacy to paper with the launch of our Desmond and Serendipity correspondence card sets!

What inspired you to revive your Grandmother’s work and start Sister Parish Design in 2000? Did you always know that you wanted to work in the design field?

The truth is that I did not always know that I wanted to work in the design field. I did always know that I appreciated a beautifully decorated room, and especially appreciated and loved the rooms that my grandmother and Albert [Hadley] designed. It is these rooms that inspired me to create this collection.

Many of your patterns are from the Parish-Hadley archives, though you have also launched new patterns along with a home accessories collection. How do you find a balance between honoring the Parish-Hadley tradition while continuing to update your offerings?

We look to the rooms that Parish-Hadley decorated and we look to the rooms that inspired Parish-Hadley to guide us in building our collection. How are textiles being used and what types of textiles are being used in these rooms?  Will decorators today want to use these textiles in the same way or will they want to use them differently? These are the types of questions we ask ourselves in order to build a collection that will continue to honor the Parish-Hadley legacy.

What is your favorite piece of decorating advice that you like to share with friends and clients?

“Innovation is often the ability to reach into the past and bring back what is good, what is beautiful, what is useful, what is lasting.”  -Sister Parish

Photo: Horst P. Horst/Condé Nast Archive

Sister Parish, 1974

What do you think that everyone should avoid when decorating a home? Do you have any design-related pet peeves?

One thing my grandmother taught me was the importance of scale. Overly large and overstuffed furniture will ruin a room.

 You have a gorgeous house up in Bedford, New York!  How would you compare your personal design aesthetic to that of your Grandmother’s? Do you have any favorite pieces of hers that you have out in your home (furniture, decorative pieces, etc)?

I’ve always wanted to create the same comfortable and beautiful rooms for my family that my mother and grandmother created for theirs.  I’m particularly in love with a green velvet Lawson style sofa designed by Billy Baldwin. Baldwin was small in physical stature and would use the Lawson sofa as his bed in his studio apartment. The same green velvet has been on the sofa since the 1980’s and it has only gotten better with time!

We’d love to hear a bit more about the Desmond and Serendipity patterns that are featured as part of our collaboration. How did you end up choosing these particular designs?

Both Desmond and the Serendipity are small all over prints that make a big impact. They are tried and true patterns that have added depth and sophistication to many rooms over the years. We knew they would have the same effect on stationery as they’ve had on rooms.

You have priceless handwritten letters from First Lady Jackie Kennedy to your grandmother in your archives—a perfect tie-in with our partnership. Why do you think that handwritten correspondence is still important in 2018?

A beautifully handwritten letter is like a beautifully decorated room. If properly cared for, it will last forever!

Where is your ideal place to sit down and write a letter?

My porch in Maine.

Photo Jun 05, 12 44 48 PM (1)

Susan and her daughter, Eliza, at the Dempsey & Carroll office during the photo shoot for our collaboration

Many thanks to Susan for taking the time to speak with us. Be sure to shop our collaboration on our site here!