An(ne)Architecture Blog

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Designing the Spaces Where Traditions are Created and Memories are Made

Anne Sciarrone - Tuesday, December 30, 2014

What a wonderful Holiday Season celebrating Holidays with family and friends! 

All the festivity of this season has inspired me to reflect on the importance of tradition in our lives. 

Traditions tie us to each other; they ground us in the roots from where we have come.  Traditions are a way of honoring, of remembering, and they are also a way of welcoming.  Through our traditions we tell our stories and invite others to be a part.

Festa Dei Sette Pesci

Our familys most notable tradition is our Christmas Eve meal.  For nearly 15 years, my husband has been following in the footsteps of his Italian grandmother by preparing a Festa dei sette pesci (Feast of the Seven Fishes).  In the days leading up to Christmas Eve, he carefully plans the meal and shops for the finest ingredients.  By December 24th all Christmas baking must be completed and cleared out because the kitchen is off limits to anything but the preparation of our evening meal.  I clean and decorate and set out our fine china and silver.  After returning home from the Pageant Service at our Church we open our home to our extended family and eat and drink with much merriment, lingering at the table through several courses. 

It is a labor of love and it gets better and better every year.  I wonder if our children will carry this tradition on; I know they will share the stories at the very least.   In the mean time, I hope to have a larger dining room one day so we can add more seats at the table. 

In addition to our family traditions, it’s always a special highlight for me to attend celebrations held by my clients.  I love knowing that the spaces I have designed will one day be back drops for their traditions.   

Jason and Melanie’s basement couldn’t be a more fitting space to host a Holiday Wine Tasting with its exposed stone walls and warm stained wood ceiling and bar.   It was their dream to convert the once unfinished space into the heart of their entertaining.   And boy do they throw a good party!  

Rob, the consummate cook and host, brought the low-country tradition of an oyster roast to his Grant Park Victorian cottage.  It was just as we imagined as we planned his kitchen expansion - his guests gathered around the large island helping themselves to the most amazing Brunswick stew and refilling their eggnog. 

There really is nothing more satisfying to me than to see my clients enjoying the spaces weve created together and sharing those spaces with their family and friends.  This is precisely why I do what I do!

What are your special traditions?  Is your space the perfect place to house those traditions?  Or are there ways to make even a small change in your environment allow those traditions to come alive?  

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