Bringing Rooms to Life

A flowerless room is a soulless room, to my way of thinking; but even a solitary vase of a living flower may redeem it.

-Vita Sackville-West, English garden designer, poet and novelist.

How easily this quote could have been credited to either Ida or Alice Callaway. Not only did they enjoy being the caretakers of the lush gardens surrounding the estate, but each delighted in bringing the beauty indoors as well, enlivening the formality of the stylishly appointed public and private rooms of the home. Flowers and foliage were collected from plantings of the surrounding landscape and greenhouse weekly or even daily to meet their needs. It might have been a mix of jewel toned iris, crisp white peonies and colorful tulips arranged in a Flemish inspired design or a single perfectly shaped rose in a bud vase placed strategically in the home to welcome family and guests. Hills & Dales continues this tradition by placing fresh flowers throughout the home daily. Materials are still gathered from the gardens and arranged in a style that is in keeping with the interior décor and, hopefully, the design sense of both ladies.

As part of our year-long 100th anniversary celebration, and to pay tribute to Ida and Alice’s love of flowers, Hills & Dales will open the doors to Troup County garden clubs for a weekend flower show on June 4 and 5. Members of the various clubs will be able to showcase their skills in floral design by creating arrangements throughout the home. Room assignments will be done by a drawing held in May, to allow time for planning designs. Whether the grand dining room is drawn or a more intimate bedroom or sitting room, the challenge will be to bring the character of each space to life. Once locations have been established, the participants will be able to view the rooms, record colors, take measurements and consult with resident floral designer, David Brown. Garden club members will assemble their creations on site with David on hand for guidance and placement. The results should be magnificent to behold!

In conjunction with this event, Troup County residents will be  invited to tour the home and garden free of charge, allowing local guests to enjoy the added beauty within for the centennial anniversary of the opening of the home. We sincerely believe that Ida and Alice would be so pleased that their lovely home will come alive that weekend with the talents of local garden enthusiasts.

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Calla lilies, azaleas and hydrangeas adorn the music room and complement the portrait of Ida Cason Callaway.