From Us to You


writer people problems

–Calypso Grier, Writer/Editor for Wrought Iron Reads

Here at Wrought Iron Reads, we love our southern style. It’s one of the characteristics that sets us apart! The charm of the south is rooted in a history of gentility, a love for the finer things in life, and what better way to channel that beauty and grace than to transform your home office space?

Southern Living – Click here for more design tips!

Hello, All! It’s your girl, Calypso, coming at you from my patio with some tips on how to reshape your writing or reading area and give it some Dixie dust. I asked Reatha Beauregard to pitch in with her suggestions as well. Ready to see what the two of us came up with? Here goes!


Starting with the color scheme, you’ll want soft pastels or a muted palette because subtlety is the mark of a true Southern Belle or Southern Gentleman. Boldness should be tempered and refined, so nix the bright vibrant and go with shades and hues that gently draw the eye rather than command attention.

Here’s Reatha’s pick to give you an idea of what to look for:


Your wall paint/paper, furniture and accent pieces should stick to your chosen palette to bring the look together.

Pro Tip: It’s okay to throw in an odd color, something patterned or seemingly “out of place,” too! Don’t be matchy-matchy if you want a room that has balance and harmony.


Alright, you need antiques to give a room that Deep South appeal, but antiques can be costly. Can’t afford a horsehair settee like Scarlett O’Hara from Gone with the Wind?

Horsehair?! What the what?
Horsehair?! What the what?

No worries! Here’s how you can “fake antique.” Start by taking your old couch or chairs and adding needlepoint pillows to toss in a dose of character.

Go Vintage!
Go Vintage!
Or, Go Modern!
Or, Go Modern!

Next, take your old writing desk and give it a good distressing to create the antique look you want without breaking your pocket! You don’t have to be Van Gogh to make it happen. will show you how:

Switch out your light fixtures and lamp shades with vintage or retro accessories.

Give up these:


For these:



Now you can add the finishing touches and blend your own personal flavor with the mint julep and peaches and cream sweetness of the South. How to?

Look at you, looking all important and stuff!

Pick up old picture frames from salvage or thrift stores. They may need a touch-up on the paint, but it’s nothing you can’t handle now that you’ve tackled distressing your old furniture! Where I’m from, paying homage to your ancestors and holding true to family values is paramount. So, pull out some family photos and put them on display.


Paperweights and figurines may seem kitschy, but they’re all part of the design theme you’re channeling. Find pieces that match your personality. Completely against that idea? You can never go wrong with a stack of dusty, beautiful books instead! Place them on mantels, end tables and shelves.

My personal must-have in a reading or office space is a nice crystal whiskey set. Oh, fill it with whatever you want—just put it on display and feel how the room takes on “quality.”

D’ah, yes! “Quality!”

Finally, you can’t be southern without a heaping dose of patriotism and pride! Put your flag on display and watch how it all comes together!


We hope you’ve enjoyed our quick tips for how to bring the South to home. Once you’re done, curl up with a great book and relax. Oh, here’s one!

Tell us your own suggestions for creating the perfect reading or writing space below in the comments! Ta-ta now, y’all!


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