Getting set up on a blind date is tricky business. Getting set up by your boss makes it even trickier. But for Jadz Pate, vice president of creative services at Neiman Marcus, it turned out to be the best thing ever. When she met Pat seven years ago, “I immediately said to myself, ‘What a really great guy. What’s up with this guy?’” she says. After the third date, she knew she was going to marry him.
Four years later, she did just that. In the interim, she sold her Dallas home and moved into Pat’s Fort Worth townhouse. The two had talked about building a house, and shortly after tying the knot, they decided to get started. The stars were obviously aligned—they found the lot on the way to the gym. Once they had the dirt, they started on their wish list. “Over wine and a beer, we started drawing out a plan on a napkin,” Jadz says. “We designed our home based on how we love to entertain. We wanted a nice-size house, but we didn’t want unusable spaces. We’re empty nesters.” Builder V Fine Homes turned the plans into a reality.
From there, friends Lisa Martensen and Jan Jones of Martensen Jones Interiors came in for design assistance. (Neiman’s has provided an embarrassment of riches for Jadz. Not only did she meet Pat through work, she also met Jones and Martensen there, too.) The result is a stylish and warm home, perfect for parties. Which is lucky, because when Jadz says that the couple likes to entertain, she isn’t kidding. “We have tons of parties—different events. Birthday parties. Engagement parties,” she says. “We always have a dinner party of some sort every month.”
It makes sense then that decorating for the holidays is a big deal to the Pates. “Even when we dated, Pat knew I really get into it. He helps in his own way. He’ll play music, pour me a glass of wine, get a fire started. Then we have great banter about what’s going on in our lives, what’s happening with the kids. It’s something fun and romantic that we do.” In the past, Jadz refused to even consider a fake tree, but she had a change of heart after her tree was less merry than brittle last year. New ornaments from Roost make the faux tree pretty fabulous. “The colors kind of pick up on the color palette in the living room. And the icicles that are made out of crystal stones give it some texture,”
Ordinarily, Christmas takes heavy scheduling. Jadz hails from Chicago, and it’s important for her to spend Christmas Eve with her family. She normally flies back on Christmas Day, so the day is understandably understated. “We open presents in jeans. We have a fire going. It’s low-key.” This December, however, things will be a little different. “The way it’s falling, we’re going to see my family earlier, so we’re going to be here for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day,” she says. She’s looking forward to celebrating her first Christmas at home.
Pat’s family is what brought Jadz to Fort Worth, in a way. She says she loved the city even before she met Pat, but the two talked briefly about living in Dallas. Big D was never in serious contention, though, “because his family is in Fort Worth, and I’m a big family person,” Jadz says. “My husband is an old Fort Worth-family guy. His family is all there—his mom, stepdad, siblings, sons, and daughters-in-law. And to me, it’s all about being around your family.”
So what to expect at the Pate family Christmas affair? Music is pretty much a sure thing. “My stepsons are really into music—music is an important factor.” So much so that the Pates refer to their living room as the “piano room” or the “music room.” “When our boys are over, it starts to get rocking with music. Someone picks up a guitar. Someone gets on the piano. It becomes kind of von Trapp here,” she says, laughing.
Styled by Jan Jones, Lisa Martensen, and Shelby Hennessee | Holiday styling by Billy Milner