Christi Pringle’s insatiable wanderlust and deep-rooted appreciation of art and culture manifest as a passion with purpose.
by Catherine Ruth Kelly | photographs by Dustin and Susie Peck | produced by Whitley Adkins
Christi Pringle’s first taste of travel was at age 2, when her family moved from California to the Azores, an archipelago of nine volcanic islands off the coast of Portugal. Her father’s service as a pilot in the U.S. Air Force landed them there for four years before they returned stateside and settled in the Charleston area.
“Living in the Azores is where my love of travel began, as well as my appreciation of different cultures,” Pringle says.
From left: The gallery wall in the living room features an eclectic mix of art, including brass rubbings from Westminster Abbey during a family trip to London in the 1980s, a pencil drawing of Pringle’s grandfather that she sketched in high school and silhouettes of various family members. Christi Pringle in her accessories closet, wearing one of FOUND’s signature items, a skirt embroidered by Indian women who are HIV positive. Her earrings are made from antique Venetian glass by a London designer. Right: Cocoa the dog commandeers a corner in the family room, anchored by a hand-painted French desk from the Charleston home of Walter Pringle’s grandmother. A black-and white-abstract painting by Christi Pringle accents the space.
This love and appreciation is apparent both in Pringle’s personal style and in the Old Foxcroft home where she and husband, Walter, live and raised their two adult sons. Each room has a colorful, collected aesthetic that has been thoughtfully woven from wanderlust and cultural curiosity. Walls are filled with art curated from vacations or created by family members, including Pringle herself. Furniture and accessories include travel relics, heirlooms from beloved ancestors and pieces accumulated via Pringle’s keen eye from vintage stores.
The Pringles’ front door, finished in shiny black lacquer, is punctuated with an oversized round brass knob procured in England. The knob was inspired by Pringle’s favorite London hotel, Number Sixteen. Upon entering the house, a hand-painted Asian screen greets guests in the foyer. The screen is from Walter’s grandmother’s home in downtown Charleston.
From left: A portrait of Walter Pringle’s grandmother greets guests at the bar, which is accented with heirlooms and travel souvenirs. A Moooi chandelier illuminates the custom Jonathan Kauffman dining table. Kauffman assembled it on-site, and Christi wrote a prayer on the center post before he affixed the top. The banquette is from Ballard Designs.
“The original Coromandel screen was twice this size,” Pringle explains. “Walt and his sister both loved it, so they divided the panels into two so they each can enjoy half.”
Just beyond the entry, a painting of Walter’s beloved grandmother hangs above a console table that doubles as a bar. The portrait was painted by Walter’s step-grandfather, an English professor and true Renaissance man whose hobbies included art, music and poetry. Beneath the painting sits a ceramic Asian sculpture, another heirloom from Walter’s grandmother. The bronze Etruscan horse is a souvenir from Rome, a frequent destination for the Pringles because of dear friends who live there. A small slab of rock shaped by oxidized iron, so intricately detailed it reminds Pringle of a city skyline, also sits atop the bar. She picked it up at a shop in Paris just around the corner from the Hotel de Buci, where she and her sister, Tracy Dart, have befriended the concierge.
Left: The powder-room walls are swathed in a mossy green faux croc wallpaper by Elitis. Kelly Wearstler pendant lights hang above the sink. But the chicest accessory is the built-in telephone, which is original to the house. The number written on the base is 867-5309, for a latrine laugh. Right: The laundry area is camouflaged with wallpaper by Rebel Walls.
Pringle and her sister share a love for travel, so much so that they founded a business around it in 2016. FOUND Collection, a mindfully sourced collection of clothing and accessories from around the world, combines their passions for travel and fashion.
“Our trips usually focus on sourcing items for our business,” Pringle says. FOUND features independent women designers with a socially conscious or sustainable mission. Pringle and Dart offer their products at trunk shows and donate to a nonprofit after each sale.
Left: An antique buffet from Walter Pringle’s grandmother showcases a silver tea service awarded to Christi’s great grandfather in a boat race in 1937. He was a sea captain and invented a class of boat called the Moth boat. Fabric lampshades were sourced from Cashion Hill Design. The large artwork was a wedding gift from Walter’s step-grandfather, a pioneer of computer art. Right: An antique Asian screen, an heirloom from Walter Pringle’s grandmother, makes a statement in the foyer. The Pringles added wooden slats beside the front door to create a division between the entry and living room. The rug is from Adrienne Davis Design.
“This year was a banner year for FOUND’s international exploration — Copenhagen, Madrid, London, Mallorca and the Azores,” Dart says. “We are always thrilled to discover new items to share and new artisans to support.”
Pringle and Dart are grateful they have been able to translate their wanderlust into a greater purpose.
“We feel fortunate to be able to use our business as a platform for women supporting women and share these unique handmade items from all over the world,” Pringle notes.
Left – Right: Wine awaits guests in a vintage silver nautilus wine chiller that Christi also uses as a planter. A porch party with dear friends who have supported FOUND since its beginning in 2016. Christi’s father brought the round table home from Morocco. Hors d’oeuvres are served on a handcarved wooden tray that Christi’s father bought in the Philippines. The engraved silver cup is a 1932 boat race trophy won by her grandfather.
As for her next trip with her husband, Pringle says that is a favorite topic of conversation.
“Our 30th anniversary is next year, so we are trying to land on something perfect,” Pringle says. “We both have long lists of places to go, and happily they are pretty similar lists!” SP