If James T. Farmer were a place, he would be a front porch. Open and inviting, this Southern home and garden guru exudes a “y’all come on in” vibe. The latest book in Farmer’s prolific spree (it is his eighth) showcases the designer’s work in 11 homes throughout the South. Farmer is down-to-earth enough to realize that when it comes to our houses, we find devotion in the daily motion of living: piling armloads of groceries on the table, weeding the garden, cleaning the kitchen after a big family meal. “Acts of love and duty transform a place into more than just a house,” he writes. But Farmer’s work has loftier aims too. In his interiors, thoughtful choices matter. Paint is not merely a color “slapped onto sheetrock” but “a backdrop for cocktails with friends, Christmas mornings, prom pictures posed in front of the mantel.” Reading A Place to Call Home is like sitting on a front porch. You want to stay awhile.
By Kirk Reed Forrester
James T. Farmer III, A Place to Call Home: Timeless Southern Charm (Gibbs Smith, 2017)