Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Chatting with...Genie Francis!

 Genie Francis, perhaps best known for her role as Laura on General Hospital and currently starring as Genevieve on The Young and the Restless, now owns a cottage furnishings and home accessories business called The Cherished Home in Belfast, Maine. Here, Genie shares with us her love of decorating and her favorite parts of celebrating the holiday season. 

(Oh, and I just have to share that I discovered Genie and I share a's kismet!)

 (all images provided by Thierry Bonneville)

Matthew Mead: To many who know you, you are an Emmy award-winning daytime actress who lived a glamorous life for many years in Hollywood. Yet your childhood was spent leading a quiet, happy existence on Long Island. Did those roots lead you to set up shop (literally) in rural Maine?

Genie Francis: Yes, absolutely. Belfast, Maine feels like time has stood still here. Preserving the charm and comfort of simpler times is what I wanted to share with my children.

MM:  Where did you love of home décor evolve from?  Do you shop the gift and furniture markets to select items for the store?

GF: Yes; I try to get to as many markets as possible to find good products at a fair price. I think I have always had a desire to make my environment look beautiful, even from early childhood.


MM:  TV and movie sets have to be decorated for the holidays...

GF: Yes, but this is done by the set decorators.

MM: You obviously enjoy decorating and design. What made you decide to segue from simply renovating and decorating your own home to starting your own interior decorating business?

GF: It was a fantasy I had for a long time and when we were living in Maine full-time, I had the free time to do it. 

MM: It sounds as though your busy career and family life has led you to make your home in Maine your family's getaway.  Are you able to get back to Maine each year for the Holiday season?

GF: We always come home for the holidays and summer. We see Maine as the antidote to Hollywood. 

MM: The holidays are quickly approaching. My readers and I would love to hear about your family traditions and how you decorate your home for the holidays. Will you paint us a picture?

GF: My Christmas decorations are very traditional, but I do have a collection of angels that I always use. 

MM: What part of the magic of the Holidays do you try to share at the store? And what are some of the traditions that you try to incorporate into your own family Christmas?

GF: One of the traditions that we have created in our family is a holiday party/fund raiser for children's charities.

MM: The Cherished Home features a lot of fresh cottage style. What is your personal decorating style? Do you have any designer crushes?

GF: I like an awful lot of styles, but most of all I am an avid collector of antiques and I decorate for them to show them in their best light. Personal designer crushes include Annie Selke and, of course, Ralph Lauren and Cath Kidston...and I love what Mitchell Gold is doing currently. 

MM: Thank you Genie! We have so enjoyed hearing more about your holiday style and your beautiful shop, The Cherished Home


Be sure to visit Genie's online shop and for those in the area, you can visit The Cherished Home at 
31 Searsport Avenue | Belfast, ME 04915. MONDAY - SATURDAY | 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
 Toll Free 1877 338 4111 | phone (207) 338-4111 | email

**Follow The Cherished Home on Facebook and Twitter.**


Buy our expanded keepsake edition of Holiday with Matthew Mead 2011 here.


  1. Great interview Matthew. Her store is beautiful! All different rooms in the house filled with gorgeous items. My daughter and I were in there so long, my husband had to come in to see if we were ok!

  2. Beautiful store and a beautiful lady.

  3. What a beautiful home and a teriffic interview!

  4. I loved this interview, Matthew. I have been a fan of Genie's since I was about 17, during those Luke and Laura days. I have purchased a couple items online from her store and was impressed at the service and style. The old yellow house/store is darling, love seeing it here!

    I will share this interview on Twitter :)

    Thank you for bringing this to us today.

  5. What a fantastic interview, Matthew. My sorority sisters and I used to schedule our classes around General Hospital! *love Genie* Thanks for posting the links, too!

    Merry Christmas!
    Ricki Jill


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