April 21, 2016

Michael Devine Ltd. strives to create beautiful products that are unique and always handmade. Using the best artisans in both the USA and France, every yard of fabric or piece of china is carefully crafted and made to order.

What's James Serving?

The style setters intimate dining room.
Anybody who gets to spend about more than a minute with James Andrew is doubtlessly enchanted by his warm and clever wit. Known for his style blog What's James Wearing and his Instagram feed he has made a name for himself not only as a talented interior designer but as le nec plus ultra dandy about town. James started his career at the esteemed firm Parish Hadley and quickly developed a taste for bespoke everything. He easily translates his fashion to the table and creates welcoming environments for his guests that compliment his delicious cooking.

The host: designer James Andrew in front of his vast collection of design books. 
Tell me about the occasion and meal you made. 
Just a little luncheon for four friends. We started with Alex Hitz's sour cream corn cakes with creme fraiche and salmon roe followed by his chicken curry and a salad of spinach, red onion, duck prosciutto and blue cheese with a red wine vinaigrette. The dessert was pineapple upside down cake,  all so delicious and rather easy to make.

A paisley table cloth and Aynsley dinner plates create the background for each place setting. An inspired mix of a patterned salad plate and napkin add interest to each place setting.
What influences your menu choices when you entertain? 
There are seasonal considerations - I love a trip to the local farmers market, then there are moods and themes that come into play - I keep it simple for the most part - I think it is such a treat to entertain at home- and I want everything to have a sense of ease about it!
I like to start with a little cocktail hour in the living room - drinks and some little nibbly things and then go into the dining room for dinner. 
A collection of patriotic red, white and blue glasses and centerpiece add sparkle to the table.
Who or what has most inspired your entertaining style? 
There are so many people and things that have inspired me over the years - as a child I was fascinated by the Julia Child show, The Tiffany Table Settings books were amazing. I was honored to create a table setting at Tiffany's while I was an associate at Parish Hadley
Style icons like Deeda Blair, Valentino, Alberto Pinto, The Duchess of Windsor, The Slatkin Clan- the list is endless - these people have informed my own taste and how I set a table and aspire to entertain.
Using an object like this  melon tureen makes a great no fuss alternative to flowers as a centerpiece. 
Do you have a favorite china or tabletop item that you collect?
I am a bit of a hoarder- as you can see my place is beginning to look a bit like a chic episode of "hoarders buried alive" There are so many things that I like - and an elegant eclectic mix is most appealing to me!