Tuesday, September 18, 2012

A Few of my Favorite Rooms

While attempting to clean out my sadly unorganized  photo files I ran across a few rooms that still make me swoon.  This is why my files are never organized!  I thought instead of working through this never ending task, it would be way more fun to share a few photos with all of you.  Don’t expect any rhyme or reason to this post, just pretty pictures.  That’s why we look at blogs anyway, isn’t it?


Love the  café curtains…. and that coffee table… and the club chairs… and…..and…

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Check out this ottoman, have you ever??  The sectional is curved and that’s not something you see often.  Obviously this is all custom made and oh, so pretty.


The color of these walls is just so serene, and I love the use of all neutral upholstery


So serene.  Love the pair of chests topped with mirrors.


A classic and comfortable room.  Love the bed and the textured basket under the console table.


My favorite color palette, well one of them.  I am just finishing a project using blues with sea green and creams… such a beautiful combination.  Notice the color of the side chairs.  It needs that touch of unmatched color to make it work, otherwise the look goes flat if all the blues are just the same.


More blues and creams.  The touch of black keeps this room from floating away.


Blues and creams, I just can’t stop!


Here is a change of pace, this color combo is so vibrant and fun… love it!

OK, back to the real world of working through these photo files.  Thank you for indulging me in my moment of design distraction.


Tuesday, September 4, 2012

A Short History and A Special Anniversary x Two

Here we are at the first of September, not just any September but one with two milestones! 

At Perfect Home we kick off our 10 year anniversary celebration and my sister store Perfect Dress of Rome begins their 35th year in business!!!  I’m not sure what it is, but I have always loved anniversaries.  Maybe it is the marking of time, maybe the opportunity to reflect, but I like looking back when reaching that certain special date on the calendar. 

Well, today is one of those days.  Way back when in 1978, today was the day I opened my first store, The Wedding Belle.   Bear with me as I indulge in a trip down memory lane…..

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Actually, I think this is my mom in front of my original store, but since I look just like her, imagine it’s me!

In downtown Rome, just down from the Desoto Theatre my first business was born.  I, myself had been born a mere 23 years earlier!  When I think back on how young and clueless I was, it is a miracle the store survived at all.  When people ask how someone so young could make a go of it, my answer is I didn’t know failure was an option.  Both my parents had always owned small businesses in Rome.  My father’s business, Milton’s
Photography,  was around from the mid 60’s until his retirement in the mid 90’s.  My mother had opened first Wee Tot and later Storybook preschools and kindergartens, in business from the early 60’s until the early 80’s.  At that time  she began a catering business after I opened The Wedding Belle in 1978.  She continued catering weddings for many years.  So you see, I  come from “self employed” stock!

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I still have my original desk, now it is charcoal gray and I use it for display.  Thankfully, I don’t have the shoes!

As most of my blog readers and customers know, I was in the bridal business until I sold it in 2002 and opened Perfect Home and Perfect Prom.  What many of you may not know, is Perfect Home actually began a couple of years earlier with in home parties.  This was prior to Southern Living stealing my idea {just kidding} and beginning their home party division. { I knew it was a good idea!  }

Setting up and hosting my first Perfect Home Party.  {sorry for the poor quality}

This was a great way to get a feel for the home décor and design business.  I learned how to buy, which vendors had the best product for the best value, and fine tuned my eye for design.


But, my heart will always be in “shop keeping”.  That is what I know.  In late 2001 I decided to sell The Wedding Belle and focus full time on Perfect Home.  Of course, I couldn’t let go of my formal wear roots completely, so I retained the prom division of my business and also opened Reesa’s Perfect Prom for the first five months of each year during prom season. 




And now……My formal wear roots run deep.  It is hard to give up dressing young girls dreams!

Check my blog soon for much more  about those early Perfect Home years in a later post as we celebrate our Tenth Anniversary this year, but today is the anniversary of The Wedding Belle, and it’s new incarnation Perfect Dress of Rome!!!


Approximately eight years after selling The Wedding Belle to Debye Culpepper, she decided it was time to move on and sold the store to my “niece” Alison Burton Smith.  I was thrilled!!!  Alison and her family have been my family’s closest friends for the past 50+ years and she is the closest thing this only child has to a niece.   No one could be a better fit  to carry on The Wedding Belle tradition  than Alison, she was actually born the year I opened.  I am thankful everyday that Debye chose to sell it to her. 


Alison and I in our matching dresses in 2010. No, not planned…   Obviously, we had been spending a little too much time together! 

Since taking the helm in 2010, Alison has relied on her eight years of previous experience at the Greater Rome Chamber of Commerce to bring her dream store, Perfect Dress of Rome, to life. 


Ribbon cutting in 2010.

I am so happy to spend each day next door to my “sister store”  Perfect Dress of Rome with this talented, motivated and hard working young entrepreneur.  Watching her become such a successful business woman in a store that I started so many years ago is a true blessing.  If you would like to read the post I wrote about Alison and  the precious story behind why she always wanted to own The Wedding Belle, you can read it here.   It is a very sweet story!



Happy girl at the opening of Perfect Dress of Rome

In today’s world celebrating a 10th anniversary, as Perfect Home will this year, is quite an accomplishment.   Celebrating  35 years as The Wedding Belle/ Perfect Dress of Rome will,  is truly amazing!

Please indulge me here…. Alison, I am so proud of you and what you have done with Perfect Dress these past two years.  It has been a privilege to mentor you, support you and watch you grow.   Here’s to another 35 years of creating that “ perfect day” for brides in Rome and the surrounding areas.   I know you are just getting started… the sky’s the limit!!!