CHAPTER 1: CELEBRATE
What do we love about this time of year? The flicker of lights. The unexpected delights.
Parties that linger long after midnight. So we’re celebrating with a series of love letters to the season.
First up, Rebecca and the very gifted floral artist Taylor Patterson of Fox Fodder Farm met at Rebecca’s townhouse in Brooklyn to talk celebrating, their dream party guests and making any gathering magical.
When you think of the holidays, you think of...
TAYLOR: Being cozy! And slightly tipsy. I love the first snow in the city. Walking at night, slightly frozen, with the city lights and holiday decorations glowing and the snow flurries dancing around you is one of those forever nostalgic moments.
REBECCA: Well, Thanksgiving is a new holiday for me, since I didn’t grow up with it, so it’s really like a bonus holiday. It’s purely about sharing magical moments with friends and family without the pressure of passing gifts. I really associate it with the turning of the seasons—the smell of fall in the city. Leaves burning. The sounds of leaves crunching beneath your feet. Seeing your breath in the air. And getting to wear your new winter coat is always exciting!
Any favorite holiday traditions?
REBECCA: At Christmastime we always watch The Polar Express with the kids and when the hot chocolate song comes on I always come out with dancing with hot chocolate. And then we read The Night Before Christmas.
TAYLOR: We always go on what my mom calls a "forced march." What we really do is just go for a walk all together in the countryside where I grew up. I live in New York and my sister is in Colorado so we’re not often all together. It’s the way we reconnect.
How did you collaborate on creating this beautiful table?
REBECCA: We talked first and we share a very similar aesthetic so it was easy.
TAYLOR: We wanted it to feel festive but not overly wintery. Since Rebecca is from New Zealand and it’s summer there this time of year, we went with a lighter palette. I brought in some soft, feminine florals like Café Latte roses, white anemones, Café Au Lait dahlias and then added blue milkweed to complement these beautiful blue plates she has. I finished it off with raw cotton branches along with candles to set the ambiance.
Who would be your dream party guests?
TAYLOR: Piet Oudolf, Tage Andersen, Joan Didion, and Cher. It’s an odd group and the first three are totally on the same wave length, but I loooove Cher.
REBECCA: Miss. Havisham. And David Bowie, of course! Although I’d be worried that I wouldn’t be exciting enough to keep him entertained. I love funny people. Anyone that makes me laugh is always welcome to my house.
½ oz Cognac
5 oz Cremánt sparkling wine
1 sugar cube
Soak the sugar cube in the bitters and drop
into a champagne flute. Add the cognac and wine
and garnish with a twist of lemon.
(Rebecca’s wine of choice: Mas Jullien Pays de l’Herault Blanc)
Any suggestions creating beautiful floral décor at home?
TAYLOR: Don’t overthink it. Trusting your taste is always the best thing to do. At home I always gravitate towards keeping things simple. Beautiful juniper branches laid across a mantle or snipped pine by itself in a vase.
What are you most looking forward to this year?
TAYLOR: Having my sister come home. She stayed in Colorado last year and it was hard not having her there. And being cozy! Did I say that already? Give me a soft sweater, a roaring fire, a good read, and a bottomless cup of coffee and I’m good.
REBECCA: Time with my children and seeing friends and family. Snow—I always love snow! And toasting with my favorite champagne cocktail by the fire.