Tag Archives: Greenville

Marquin Campbell Designs Turkey Spur Jewelry Giveaway

Happy Friday!  What better way to celebrate is there than with jewelry?

Marquin Campbell Designs, Turkey Spur Necklace, Turkey Spur Bracelet, and Turkey Spur Cuff Links  | Oysters & Pearls

photo credit: www.marquindesigns.com

I met Marquin Campbell a year or so ago through a co-worker.  She lives in Greenville, South Carolina with her husband (the aforementioned co-worker) George and their pups, and creates beautiful, nature-inspired jewelry and paintings while simultaneously running her own business, Vino & van Gogh.

Marquin grew up near Savannah, where she was inspired by the wildlife and the marshes.  She went on to study Drawing and Painting at The University of Georgia, then to study Fashion Design at Parsons, the New School for Design in New York City. While in school Marquin had studied abroad in both Cuba and Italy, further influencing her artistic perspective.

Some of my favorite pieces of her artwork are combinations of her abstract and colorful style combined with scenes from nature:

photo credit: www.marquindesigns.com

photo credit: www.marquindesigns.com

Her artwork is colorful and fun, as is her jewelry.  But my favorite of all her jewelry is her simple, hand-cast bronze and pewter turkey spur jewelry.  As a matter of fact, she’s sort of famous for them!  The cufflinks will be featured at the Garden & Gun show in Charleston this December, and they are also appearing in the Southern Living Gift Guide!  

Marquin sent me a necklace, bracelet and a pair of cufflinks so I could see them for myself.  Any (or all?) of these would make an excellent gift to tuck away until Christmas time.

Marquin Campbell Designs, Turkey Spur Necklace | Oysters & Pearls

Marquin Campbell Designs, Turkey Spur Necklace, Turkey Spur Bracelet, and Turkey Spur Cuff Links  | Oysters & PearlsThe pairing of the pearls with the turkey spurs is simple, classic sporting style.  And I just love the story behind the turkey spurs.  From Marquin’s website:

These Pewter Turkey Spur Cuff Links were inspired by an afternoon afield in Thomasville, Georgia.  The original spurs came from a magnificent old Tom harvested by Marquin’s husband.

He was so proud of the bird–which he had chased for over two years–that Marquin surprised him with a pair of links made from the spurs, and he wore them every chance he got.  After garnering much praise and clamor from his friends wanting a pair of their own, Marquin had the spurs cast into bronze and pewter, and they have become beloved keepsakes for outdoor enthusiasts across the Southeast.

These designer cufflinks are handmade in Greenville, South Carolina by designer Marquin Campbell with great care, they are uniquely original and fantastic conversation starters – a symbol of the true affection for the Great Outdoors held by every conservationist.

Marquin Campbell Designs, Turkey Spur Necklace, Turkey Spur Bracelet, and Turkey Spur Cuff Links  | Oysters & Pearls Marquin Campbell Designs, Turkey Spur Necklace, Turkey Spur Bracelet, and Turkey Spur Cuff Links  | Oysters & Pearls

I asked Marquin what she loves about Greenville , the South, and how it inspires her work.  

I have been really fortunate to have landed in Greenville.  Its a medium sized town that still has retained its small town traits.  The city LOVES artists and because I have surrounded myself with the arts through the art school I own, Vino & van Gogh, and utilizing the space as both a store and gallery, living here has been a perfect spot for me to land.  I am so very grateful to live out a creative life. 

Isn’t that all we can ask for?

Marquin Campbell Designs, Turkey Spur Necklace | Oysters & Pearls  As absolutely tempting as it was to keep at least one of these goodies to myself (seriously, SO tempting – I gotta get one for myself!) Marquin generously sent them all for me to give away to you guys!

Marquin Campbell Designs and Oysters and Pearls Turkey Spur Jewelry Giveaway

I know, right?  All you have to do is follow Marquin on Instagram, Pinterest, and Facebook, and leave a comment on this post for each one follow.  Each comment will count as your entry into the contest – as in you can enter three times!  I’ll pick three winners next Friday, September 19th.  First winner gets first pick, second winner gets second pick, third winner gets third pick.  Sound fair enough?  So follow away, and be sure to come back here and make sure to leave a separate comment for each place you follow Marquin.

Follow Marquin on Instagram

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Follow Marquin on Facebook

Good luck!

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Marquin Campbell Designs Turkey Spur Cufflinks
Marquin Campbell Designs Turkey Spur Bracelet
Marquin Campbell Designs Turkey Spur Necklace
Marquin Campbell Designs Artwork

Until Next Time

Charleston Okra Soup

I hope everyone had a great weekend! Wheat was playing in a golf tournament out of town, so the boys and I had a nice little weekend to ourselves. I watched football on Saturday at Maggie & Greg’s house, ate some amazing homemade pizzas they made for gourmet game day fare, as well as some killer browned butter & sea salt rice crispy treats she made. I’ll be talking game day food all week this week (after today) as I prepare to go to Gainesville (and drag my Dawg-loving husband along with me) for the Tennessee game! I also canned pears (I’ll post on it later, unless anyone is really antsy about it), put up pumpkin, and made Maggie’s pumpkin pasta recipe! You may have already seen it on Instagram. I made a couple changes, and I will do a post on it at some point as part of my Operation Eat All The Pumpkin campaign. I picked 15 more last week, and have more coming! It was a nice, productive weekend, but we were all ready for Wheat to get home!

When I was in Greenville a couple weeks ago, I had the chance to pop into Charleston Cooks! It’s a great little (or not so little, rather) kitchen store. I thought it was the perfect opportunity to pull the trigger on The Lee Brothers’ Charleston Kitchen cookbook. So I did. And now it’s my new, possibly all-time-favorite cookbook. I like to read my cookbooks like a novel, and this one did not disappoint. Each recipe is accompanied by a story about the person or place they got it or adapted it from, and there is a plethora of Charleston history intertwined with the recipes on its pages. I enjoyed reading every bit of it, and so far, I’m really enjoying the recipes, too.

I started off making the Okra Soup, because our okra plants are actually making enough okra for us to legitimately eat it. That, and the Low Country holds a little special place in my heart. My dad’s family is from Beaufort, South Carolina, which is just a hop and a skip down the coast from Charleston, and I grew up eating deviled crab and she-crab soup due to my dad’s roots there. When I read about this soup, between our little garden and family connection, there was no way I wasn’t making this soup.

Okra Soup | Oysters & Pearls

It was delicious, and thanks to our prolific okra garden, the only thing I had to purchase was the meat. I have a strong suspicion I will be making this again before the frost gets the okra.

I mean, I almost can’t believe we grew this beautiful veggie!

Home Grown Okra for Okra Soup | Oysters & Pearls

A bowl full of perfect fresh okra hand picked from my backyard is a beautiful thing to me, anyway.

The commentary from the Lee Brothers on this recipe was really interesting to me. Apparently Charleston Okra Soup is just as traditional as She-Crab Soup in the low country (as is the beef-okra combo), and is often paired with pimiento cheese sandwiches. That is a combination I can SO get down with, but Wheat claims he doesn’t like pimiento cheese, so I served it with Baked Cornbread instead, which was awesome.

A cook’s note: I went to Jones Meats, our wonderful local butcher shop, for beef shank, and they didn’t have any. Apparently, it’s the kind of thing that you have to let your butcher know you want ahead of time. This is something you’d probably want to consider, but in a pinch, I used “soup ribs” which are beef ribs cut into large chunks, and the soup was really, really good.

Charleston Okra Soup
(via The Lee Brothers’ Charleston Kitchen)
made 6 main course servings for me

ingredients

– 1.5 pounds of beef shank or “soup ribs,” cut into 1 inch cubes, marrow bone reserved
– Kosher salt & freshly ground pepper
– 1 tablespoon canola oil, plus more if needed
– 2 cups chopped yellow (I used Vidalia) onion – about 2 medium onions
– 3 bay leaves
– 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
– 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
– 1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
– 1 pound okra, trimmed, cut on the bias into 1/2-inch thick ovals
– Fresh parsley for garnish (option)

instructions

Season the beef (bone included) with salt and pepper. Bring to room temperature, about an hour. Pat the pieces dry with a paper towel.

Pour the oil into a large dutch oven or heavy-bottomed pot over medium-high heat, and when it shimmers, brown the beef in batches, if necessary. Don’t crowd the pan or you won’t get a good sear on them. Add oil by teaspoonfuls if the pan gets too dry. Remove the browned beef to a bowl with tongs and set aside.

Turn the heat to medium and add the onion, bay leaves, red pepper flakes, paprika, and 1 1/4 teaspoons salt. Cook, scraping up any browned bits on the bottom of the pan and add a teaspoon of water or oil if the pan gets too dry (I didn’t have this problem at all). Cook until the onion is soft and transparent – about 6 minutes. You don’t want the onion to char.

Add 1 quart (aka 4 cups) of water and the tomatoes, return the beef to the pan, and cover. When the soup simmers gently, uncover and reduce the heat to low. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the meat is tender – about an hour. Add the okra and continue cooking until the okra is just tender – about 25 minutes.

The Lee Brothers suggest removing the bay leaves and salting and peppering to taste, but I just let us salt & pepper at the table and left the bay leaves in there. I figured we could eat around them just as easily as I could dig around in that big pot to find them. I also wanted them to stay in to continue to season the leftovers.

The soup ribs were probably a little too fatty, and I wish I had trimmed them up a bit before using them.

Soup Ribs for Okra Soup | Oysters & Pearls

The soup was still somehow not really greasy, and was SO good.

Home Grown Okra for Okra Soup  | Oysters & Pearls

Okra may be my favorite vegetable.

And this soup may be my new favorite soup! It was hearty and felt very fall-ish without weighing you down like a chili or other wintry soups. It was somehow light but hearty at the same time.

Okra Soup Recipe | Oysters & Pearls

A few more shots of my new favorite soup.

The Lee Brothers' Okra Soup Recipe | Oysters & Pearls

Makes me want some right this minute!

Charleston Okra Soup Recipe | Oysters & Pearls

What’s your favorite soup?

Greenville, South Carolina

Last week I made a quick (emphasis on quick) trip to Greenville for work.  Since we were working, I didn’t get a whole lot of time to explore the city, but we did sneak in a little exploration.  Downtown Greenville is insanely charming and adorable, and one night there was not nearly enough!

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We were there on a Monday night, and as it goes in small southern towns, most shops were closed on Mondays.  If they had been, I might have had to stop in this gallery to inquire about this painting.  Y’all know I love my Duke’s Mayo!

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In spite of the shops being closed, my friend & coworker Charity and I did manage to grab a beer at the local brewery, Blue Ridge Brewing Company.

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We also sampled their smoky pimiento cheese, which was excellent.  I loved that it came with warm pita bread, and the smoked cheddar they used was delicious!  I tried the Kurli Blonde Ale, while Charity sampled the hoppier Rainbow Trout ESB.  We thought both were very tasty! IMG_5587

After polishing off our beers and pimiento cheese, we headed to dinner with another coworker at High Cotton on the river.  The atmosphere was amazing, and despite the frigid temperatures and high velocity wind gusts, we really enjoyed the quick walk from our hotel to the river area and High Cotton.  The river was beautiful, and the restaurant did not disappoint.  I highly recommend the fried oyster appetizer and, if they have it, the cheesecake dessert!  The cocktails were especially delicious – the Pimm’s Cup was great!

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Above is the view from the footpath bridge of High Cotton restaurant.

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I wish we had been in Greenville longer to enjoy it, but I definitely envision myself going back to visit for fun!  If you do, we stayed at the Westin Poinsett downtown, and it was perfect.  Nestled in between the river and the downtown area, it was within walking distance of everywhere we would have wanted to go, with cozy, well appointed rooms.  So glad to have gotten to briefly explore a new-to-me corner of the South!