INTERVIEW: Alfred Jones
INTRODUCTION: Alfred Jones
Hello there, I’m Alfred Jones and my Instagram bio reads husband, brother, Hallmark Art Director and dog dad. I was raised in Rolla, Missouri and growing up I was always surrounded by artistic and creative people. My grandmother and father were both accomplished artists working in countless mediums, and my mother’s professional career spanned decades in advertising, design, and marketing. I have two brothers and growing up we spent most summers at our grandparent’s home in the country. When we weren't outside stomping around in the woods, we were inside taking art class, learning how to draw, paint, and cook. I currently live in a mid-century home in Kansas City, Missouri and love to spend time working in the yard, sharing meals with friends and family and traveling whenever possible.
Can you describe your home aesthetic?
My home is clean, simple, and unpretentious. I want others to be comfortable as soon as they walk in the door. This is our third home in Kansas City. Our previous homes were chopped-up and we personally had a lot of stuff everywhere. Four years ago when we moved into this home the floor plan was open, the rooms light filled, and it sat on an acre of land surrounded by mature trees. After moving in we renovated the kitchen, put in new hardwoods upstairs, carpet downstairs and painted every wall a fresh coat of white. We had a blank canvas. I knew I wanted to keep it simple and streamline the interior design. We simplified and curated as we moved and rebuilt. Our home is now filled with items picked up on our travels, artwork and home decor from regional artists, two adorable miniature dachshunds, and more plants than I ever thought I could keep alive.
Is your home design all thanks to you or is it a merging of you and your husbands taste?
If you ask my husband David, the home design (inside and out) is all my doing, but I can say we did merge things he loves throughout the house. He’s been in amateur radio since he was a teenager and has collected vintage and antique radios for the past 20+ years. Our home is always filled with background music coming from one of the many radios sprinkled throughout. Our home is an eclectic mix of vintage and modern that seems to really work seamlessly together…just like our marriage. My main design principles was to create a home that everyone could be comfortable in, to keep a consistent color palette throughout, and to keep things flexible enough that they could be changed around when we felt the need to update.
Would you say that your home impacts your work or is your home impacted by your work? Or, both?
As an Art Director in the Hallmark photo studio, I am constantly impacted by the incredibly talented people around me. Photographers, stylists, producers, art directors and designers - all of us working together to make beautiful images. One huge perk is having an in-house Trends Department that researches and shares the latest and greatest trends in color, pattern, icons, texture, home decor, etc. Since we typically work 6 months to a year out, its essential for us to always be looking ahead. Working in the photo studio made me realize that it’s good to have the “basics” in home decor so they can be easily updated. I’ve learned that you can’t go wrong with black, white, and gray - neutral colors that go with everything.
What role does your home play in inspiring, centering and preparing you to carry out a creative job?
My home is my heart. It’s where my family gathers for birthdays and holidays. It’s where I laugh, love, and make memories. It’s where I can be creative in the kitchen or work in the yard. Our home is uncomplicated and simple, very much a place that keeps me grounded. I’m very lucky that no matter how stressful or crazy my job can be, I love what I do and the incredible coworkers that I also call my close friends.
Can you describe Convivial products in 3 words?
Wow, that’s a hard question! The three words I would use are clean, simple, and handmade.
If I had six words I would also add classic, beautiful, and durable.
You have such a bright, colorful style. Ironically, what draws you to collect so many white, Convivial wares?
In any home, you have to pull color throughout to help with visual flow, and my go-to-color is white. Convivial bowls, cups, serving dishes and planters help me accomplish that. White is subtle, forgiving, aesthetically pleasing and makes anything you put against it stand out. Whether it’s a giant aloe plant in a riveted planter or a geometric bowl filled to the rim with green beans, shallots and toasted almonds… everything pops in white. The elegant, handcrafted simplicity of Convivial wares also demands a lot of compliments when family or friends are over…a bonus for me!
What do you believe draws you to collect objects and curate a home?
As I’ve gotten older I’ve become much more selective about what I collect. I’ve collected a lot of things: English Ironstone, globes, and vintage “A’s” in every font, size, and shape (the big red A in my dining room is from an old HONDA dealership sign). Today I don’t collect as much as I curate things I gravitate towards or things that capture a memory. Today it’s the one-of-a-kind bowl from a potters tiny shop in Camden, Maine or an original art print picked up in Portland, Oregon or a mammillaria elongata cactus from our most recent road trip to Minneapolis. It’s finding a place for objects that I want to hold on to, ones that I can look at and remember a time spent exploring.
Connect with Alfred Jones on Instagram via @awjones70