I was very fortunate to have interned at Barry Dixon Inc. last Fall in Warrenton, Virginia.Truly a dream of an internship that I continue to be grateful for and appreciate. The seven minute scenic drive to Elway Hall from the rambling pink Victorian house on Falmouth St. and coffee from Mom's Apple Pie Company always made for a daily roaring start. I referred to my internship journal and the entry on Day 5 was - worked on Halloween at Hellway Hall invitations for 70 people. I was beyond excited to experience my first pumpkin carving party and in Barry Dixon fashion at that. While I was growing up in the Philippines, we didn't celebrate Halloween as feverishly but observed All Saint's Day and All Soul's Day instead.
"It was built by the 19th century industrialist and U.S. Senator, Johnson Newlon Camden, for his son-in-law and daughter, Gen. and Mrs. Baldwin Day Spilman. Elway Hall stands on 15 rolling, wooded acres. This great Edwardian mansion, completed in 1907, was the largest private residence built in Warrenton up to that time. Furnishings are a Continental blend of antique and contemporary pieces, acquired in France and Italy, with quieter Anglo-American echoes. Trophies from a safari with the Duke of Windsor and a walnut and a satinwood finish French armoire are from the estate of F.W. Woolworth. There are several iron and wire mesh pieces from a furniture collection designed by Barry Dixon."
Elway Hall photo from a Washington Post article
Barry Dixon, Michael Schmidt and Ellie at Elway Hall
photo by Tria Giovan
Hellway Hall's pumpkin carving party came about when Barry and his supportive partner, Michael Schmidt, organized it for their nieces and nephews almost twenty years ago. It continues to grow every year and has become one of the main events their family and friends look forward to. Guests are picked up at a designated point in the property and taken on a hay ride to the chic rustique barn. There were many photo op moments but I deferred from using my camera since I was still so new at the job. Claire's, Warrenton's top restaurant and caterer, served comfort food in style.
After googling photos and articles, I was thankful to find this lovely blog post by Eddie Ross and photos by Laura Moss for House Beautiful. I will share some of those here with you....
a thoughtful tableau
the way to the loggia
Ellie, the darling of the manse, in a majestic pose
They carved pumpkins and stuffed themselves with candy in merriment...
while I popped one too many of these addictive ham and biscuit amuse bouche!
photo taken in 2003 during our family holiday at the Bellagio, Las Vegas