I like to keep my magazines nice and neat so almost all my copies look fairly new except for one. I carried it around so much that I eventually had to order an extra copy. That was the October 1998 issue and it was the month the movie Practical Magic came out. Victoria did a story on the house that was created for the movie. By the time I went to see the film I was absolutely in love with the house.
I know I'm not alone because I've seen entire websites and blogs dedicated to the Owens family Victorian mansion. It looked like a wedding cake and the interior was decorated in a very Pottery Barn / Shabby Chic sort of style. This was new back then since films about witches usually had them living in dark and dusty old houses.
The production designer Robin Standeffer still used dark woods but paired it with golden tones, sage and lots of creamy whites. I loved everything about it and for years this was the same palette I used in my house. I tend to get obsessive about films that inspire me so I actually went and decorated my house in the same style. Even today I have lots of touches from that time because I love that film.
The movie itself never got rave reviews. It's much different from the book it was based on (which I loved as well) but because of all the visuals (house, garden, Sally's shop and the Aunt's fabulous vintage costumes) this is up there with my all time favorites. Twice a year I get into the mood to watch it. October, for my Halloween mood, and Spring, because most of the the film was set in Spring. There's a part in the film when Aidan Quinn's character mentions the date March 8. He used it because it happened to be his real birthday. Well it's also mine! So I always get a kick when I hear it.
The kitchen was my favorite room. It had creamy white paint and tiles, an enormous Aga stove and that long farmhouse table where they danced around during the tequila lime in the coconut scene. This kitchen is the reason I have so much white dishes and pottery and started collecting bell jars! I still love it and one of these days I'd love to live in an old Victorian with an attic at the very top where I can have my own studio and paint, collage and craft the night away. And maybe sip a midnight margarita or two!
There's a nice post here about this kitchen as well as the production designer, Robin Standeffer.
Update: I can't believe I didn't mention the soundtrack (thanks Angie)! It's my absolute favorite and I have 3 copies as well! I have the original one that came out right before the movie release and the second one because they eventually made changes to the final score. I still love to listen to it in my car. As soon as I hear that opening guitar on 'If You Ever Did Believe' I can picture that big Victorian house in a heartbeat!