Crossville Asks “What Does Southern Style Mean to You?”

Architectural watercolor by SCAD alumnus George Lewis.

Architectural watercolor by SCAD alumnus George Lewis


The second annual Southern Style Now Festival is coming soon, and we’re excited to once again be a part of this event celebrating Southern interior design. The three day festival will take place in beautiful Savannah, Georgia this year and will be marked by speakers, panel discussions, art exhibitions, antiques and architectural tours, and of course, cocktail parties. The Southern Style Now Showhouse, presented by Traditional Home, will showcase the design talents of 23 A-list interior designers and influencers who will be incorporating their visions of Southern style into a historic Greek Revival home.

About the Showhouse

Located in the midst of Savannah’s Landmark Historic District and listed on the National Historic Registry, the 1854 Greek Revival home home boasts views of Monterey Square and features original details such as plaster moldings, heart pine floors, and marble fireplaces. The home had previously been divided into apartments but has now been restored to a single family home, with the renovations done to historically appropriate standards.

The festival opens with a Showhouse Gala Reception on November 9 with a portion of the proceeds benefiting the Historic Savannah Foundation. The showhouse will be open the the public for tours for four weeks from November 10 – December 10. You can purchase your Southern Style Now Showhouse tour tickets here. The festival runs November 9 – 12, and is open to both design industry professionals and the public. Festival tickets are available here.



In the words of designers…

We reached out to Southern Style Now creator Robert Leleux and a few of the showhouse designers to discover how they define Southern Style. Here’s what they had to say.

Robert Leleux


Robert Leleux

“Southern Style means paying homage to our traditions, while keeping it relevant for the 21st century. It means deeply engaging in classic design, while keeping it daring and new!”

Robert Leleux, President & Founder of the Southern Style Now Festival, is the former editor of domino magazine and former managing editor of Lonny. His writing has appeared in  The New York Times, The New York Times Magazine, and The Huffington Post. He’s also the author of three books—The Memoirs of a Beautiful Boy, The Living End, and the forthcoming Southern Style Now™ (Abrams, October 2017).



Chad James


Chad James

“Southern Style is a reflection of tradition, family, and entertaining. The perfect juxtaposition of refinement and comfort. I believe it’s a classic look with thoughtful, elaborate elements that feel effortless. And of course a good plaid.”

Chad James is the principal of the Chad James Group, an architectural consulting and design firm in Nashville, Tennessee, centered on a meticulous approach to quality in design. Chad has designed spaces all over the world and has a reputation for his meticulous attention to detail.



Kevin Walsh


Kevin Walsh

“Southern Style Now is more of a feeling than one particular look.  Interiors that are craft-fully collected over time mixing modern elements with heirlooms passed down from generations. Spaces designed for entertaining and spending time with friends and family.”

Kevin Walsh is the talented interior designer and proprietor of the design firm and design shop Bear-Hill Interiors in Little Rock, Arkansas. Known for his “glamorous yet comfortable style,” Kevin just last year received the distinction of being named one of Traditional Home’s 10 New Trads of 2016.


Denise McGaha


Denise McGaha

“Southern Style is comfort, grace, and ease. It’s beautifully set tables awaiting family and friends. It’s a comfortable seat, even in a formal room. It’s layers and layers of history in each room. The generations before us make their mark on our homes, even today.”

Dallas designer Denise McGaha, principal and owner of Denise McGaha Interiors , delivers fashionable, diverse, and adventurous designs for clients who live on the fast track, specializing in turn-key, concierge-level service delivered in 90 days or less.



Lisa Mende

“As a designer who has lived in the south my entire life, I find authentic Southern Style harkens back to one’s roots. Our homes reflect our desire for gracious living. Fine china, crystal, silver and monogrammed linen are hallmarks. We love a good chintz fabric or luscious linen. These things are not exclusive to the south, but in the south we celebrate them!”

Known for creating traditional interiors with a modern vibe for clients throughout the Southeast and beyond, Lisa Mende of Lisa Mende Design in Charlotte, NC, is a nationally-acclaimed interior designer, named one of Charlotte’s Top 10 Interior Designers by Charlotte Living Magazine. Lisa’s acclaim in the design world had earned her speaking engagements at High Point International Market, The ASID Conference, Design Bloggers Conference, and The International Surfaces Expo.


We’ll have lots more to share in the coming weeks about the Southern Style Now Festival and Showhouse. Stay tuned!