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Blog

Filtering by Category: NEWS

"A Culture of Your Own" for VIE September

Suzanne Pollak

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“There are two things I know for sure. First, never sacrifice your personality for someone else’s idea of ‘perfection.’ You have your own background, beliefs, and set of influences. I have mine. Yours and mine are different, and that is what makes life interesting — to identify what makes us unique and discover what we can each bring to the table, our community, our world. But remember the second thing I know for sure: personal culture has nothing to do with Instagram likes….”

Read the rest of Suzanne’s article, explaining how to develop a personal culture all one’s own, in the latest issue of VIE Magazine HERE!

"The Architecture of Dinner Party" for August VIE

Suzanne Pollak

George Best & his signature champagne stack, 1968. (We won’t tell you NOT to try this at home!)

George Best & his signature champagne stack, 1968. (We won’t tell you NOT to try this at home!)

“If you are asking yourself, Why bother? Let’s just go to a restaurant, STOP! The delights of a private dinner party cannot be replicated in the public arena. No waiting, no crowds, no loud party next to you. No feeling that you have to give up your table before you’re finished talking or eating dessert. At home, you can linger as long as you want under flickering candlelight. You can set your own pace, free from any pressure to give up your seats to those waiting.

You can and should move your guests wherever you please. Summer is for drinks on the balcony and dinner in the garden. Winter means cozy cocktails by the fire and dinner in the candlelit dining room. Spaces help set up moments that soothe, excite, and seduce, creating an atmosphere for meaningful conversation...”

Read the rest of Suzanne’s latest article for VIE Magazine, all about the careful construction of a good old-fashioned dinner party, HERE on their site!

"An Authentic Voice" for July VIE

Suzanne Pollak

“Corene” by Jonathan Green (1995)

“Corene” by Jonathan Green (1995)

“What makes very young people able to turn passions into a living, marrying their gifts with the discipline to create their life’s work? How can they know so early, possessing the confidence and necessary focus to keep them on their path? I dreamed of being a painter but derailed in college, distracted by thoughts like, If I am not Picasso, is it worth it? If my work is not going to hang in the Met, what does that say about me? In I am not ‘in,’ then can I still keep going forward and not give a damn what anybody thinks?

Jonathan Green knew in his very being the irrelevant nonsense of those distractions, which don’t mean a thing at the beginning of a career — or maybe ever. That’s why I love him. He actively chose to master one field (actually three: painting, fashion design, and the social graces) instead of being a jack-of-all-trades.”

Read more about Charleston-based painter Jonathan Green in Suzanne’s latest article for VIE Magazine HERE

Charleston Academy in Cosmopolitan

Suzanne Pollak

“And remember: In a sea of square-shaped biscuits, always make a heart-shaped one.” -T.A.

“And remember: In a sea of square-shaped biscuits, always make a heart-shaped one.” -T.A.

In her article “This Instagrammable Hotel Will Make You Forget Literally All Your Responsibilities,” Taylor Andrews writes about “errrything you have to do when you stay at The Beach Club, no matter what time of year you go….”

And guess what #7 on her list happens to be? “Learn how to throw a Southern Dinner Party. [The Dean] taught us how to throw a proper dinner party that included creating the perfect fluffy biscuit and shrimp and grits, but you can organize any sort of etiquette or cooking event with her if you’re interested in a different kind of Saturday-night rendezvous.”

We loved having Ms. Andrews visit while in town. Read her complete list via Cosmopolitan HERE!

Style Blooms Eternal at the Chelsea Flower Show for June VIE

Suzanne Pollak

Queen Elizabeth II at the Chelsea Flower Show. Photo:  Prima

Queen Elizabeth II at the Chelsea Flower Show. Photo: Prima

“What is it that makes this flower show so special? It’s more than queens and duchesses. Designs, such as one suspended in air in 2011 and one made of three hundred thousand individually crocheted poppies in 2016, are not simply a passive art experience. The attendees of the flower show become active participants. Our visual sense takes in the exhibits like we do the portraits at the Tate or the National Portrait Gallery; beyond our eyes, our imaginations might leap into action and plot changes to our gardens. Some people take it a step further and become part of the show by wearing fashions with a theme. How many times can adults wear their inner passions without looking loony? How many opportunities do we have to be fierce, fabulous, and maybe a tiny bit frivolous? The show is the venue to see the intermingling of artistic visions: the flowers, the garden design, the crowd, and the fashion choices. It is like a natural museum come to life — a living exhibit and a contemporary art installation all at once.”

Read more about the Chelsea Flower Show HERE via VIE Magazine!

"There's No Place Like Home (And By That I Mean Yours)" for May VIE

Suzanne Pollak

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“The houses I’ve lived in — and there have been many — meant everything to me. They’ve alternated between a calm oasis I refused to leave in the midst of chaos to party palaces where I couldn’t get anyone to exit on time. Growing up, my dipolmatic family met everyone through our homes in Afria. For eighteen years, we threw weekly dinners with every nationality seated at the table; our biannual parties for hundreds lasted all night. As an adult, my houses have been my most valuable assets. I used them to design the life I wanted at different times. My taste developed by organizing interiors and gardens. I used our rooms to add value, conjure joy, and help create more meaningful lives. I want every cubic inch to give its all….” - Suzanne Pollak

Read more about the Charleston Academy — what we do, how we do it, and why exactly — according the Dean herself, in the May issue of VIE Magazine HERE!

The Modern-Day Mary Poppins for April VIE

Suzanne Pollak

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“Meet Dennise Church — part modern-day Mary Poppins, part house whisperer, part intuitive soul seer who knows when someone needs their hand held spiritually. She flies around the country organizing, advising, and even putting clients to work as she sees fit, transforming and working her magic in ways that a life or business coach does not. Her specialty is making people feel differently about their living spaces, helping them to find stability in the midst of the turmoil in the world….”

Read more about the Dean’s personal M.P. in the latest issue of VIE HERE.

C2C for March issue of VIE

Suzanne Pollak

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“The Charleston to Charleston Literary Festival (C2C) is a collaboration between the Charleston Farmhouse in Sussex, England — home to the the thirty-year-old Charleston Festival — which is well known all over Europe — and the Charleston Library Society (CLS) in Charleston, South Carolina. The latter hosts two dozen well-known speakers and authors over fourteen days every November in two historic landmark locations downtown: the elegant Charleston Library Society (the oldest cultural institution in the South the second oldest lending library in the country) and our nation’s oldest theater, the Dock Street Theatre….”

Read more about C2C in The Literati Salon: A Festival for Intellects, Great Minds, and Engaging Conversation, by Suzanne Pollak, VIE March 2019, HERE!

Taking on #Towelgate for Town & Country

Suzanne Pollak

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“All humor and Twitter one-upmanship aside, how many towels does one need to own? Is the count influenced by how many times you use them before washing? And what of the guest towel vs hand towel debate?

For answers, we turned to a doyenne of the domestic arts—Suzanne Pollak, who runs the Charleston Academy of Domestic Pursuits—and asked for her thoughts on Ali’s bathroom arithmetic…”

Read the article by Liz Krieger regarding #Towelgate and the Dean’s final word on the subject, via T&C HERE

The Art of Gift Giving for VIE December

Suzanne Pollak

Three Wise Men at Strassbourg Cathedral, Germany (c. 1940)

Three Wise Men at Strassbourg Cathedral, Germany (c. 1940)

“The Three Wise Men Understand the Art of Gift Giving…”

Suzanne asks three experts — a world-class chef, one renowned jewelry designer, and a stylist to the stars — to share their wisdom on what to get your loved ones (knives, anyone?), when to give it (surprise them!), what to do when you forget (it happens), and how to give the really big one (diamonds, of course.)

Read the full article in the latest issue of Vie Magazine HERE.

"Setting New Traditions" for November issue of VIE

Suzanne Pollak

Rita Hayworth carves the bird.

Rita Hayworth carves the bird.

Expecting a crowd? Extended family or perhaps friends for a long Thanksgiving weekend? This may be the season to take the torch from those who have gone before you, to branch out and begin traditions of your very own. In case you are looking for a few great ideas on how to implement your personal style — from frying turkeys to divy-ing up dish duty, plus what to serve beyond the feast — (or if you just need a pep talk…)

Find the Dean’s latest piece for VIE Magazine HERE on their site!

Frequently Asked Wedding Etiquette Questions for NYT (!!!)

Suzanne Pollak

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In the excellent company of top etiquette experts from along the East Coast, Dean Pollak answers our burning wedding FAQ’s for the New York Times this week. Among other tips for how to proceed, Pollak advises against micro-managing in-laws who may be paying for a rehearsal dinner (although sharing your preferences is certainly allowed), explains the “no phone policy” trend, and instructs attendees on how much to spend on gifts when they have been invited to multiple events. This article is a must-read for anyone planning a wedding or even simply planning to attend one! Read the full piece via NYT HERE on their site…

"An Enlightened Affair" for VIE Magazine

Suzanne Pollak

Behold, the Charleston Library Society, home of many a salon...

Behold, the Charleston Library Society, home of many a salon...

The Dean is no stranger to a proper literary salon, having grown up in a diplomatic family who regularly entertained such events at their African home. To this day, she continues the tradition as director of the Charleston to Charleston Literary Festival, held annually at the local Library Society. Learn more about Suzanne's love of salons, her post and the impressive roster at this year's C2C (plus how to attend) in the latest issue of VIE Magazine: HERE.

Talking Top Sheets with Town & Country

Suzanne Pollak

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Town & Country contributor Liz Krieger knew who to call with her burning questions on whether or not a top sheet is an absolutely necessary addition to the make of a bed. Although Krieger cops to her own 'millenial' disregard for a top sheet, Suzanne remains steadfast in her admittedly old-fashioned devotion to the extra layer. Read the article, including all the pros and cons of having a flat linen to keep you cool (or warm, depending on the season), HERE via T&C! 

"The Romance of Outdoor Rooms" for VIE

Suzanne Pollak

Photo courtesy of G. P. Schafer

Photo courtesy of G. P. Schafer

Summertime is finally here again! In Charleston, this means lots of lounging in the shade of our (or our friends') porches and piazzas, iced beverage in hand, fresh off a dip in the sea. For the June issue of VIE magazine, Suzanne reflects on a life lived in outdoor rooms, from Tripoli to Ghana to the Carolinas, and the magic of bells, birds, and blue skies experienced in these inspiring spaces.

Read the full article HERE on VIE's site... 

Notes from the Rainbow Room, for VIE Magazine

Suzanne Pollak

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Looking for a reason to travel? If an epic blowout at NYC's legendary Rainbow Room isn't on your calendar this Spring, make a date with friends in a city you've never been to and live it up anyway! For three or 300, Suzanne tells how to make any destination event memorable in the latest issue of VIE Magazine.

Read the full article HERE...