“Southern Charm” Star Kathryn Calhoun Dennis Shares 7 Ways To Act Like A Refined Southern Lady

KD Photo 1Photo Credit: J Michael WalkerIf you’ve ever dreamed of being a true Southern lady, you can at least now act like one thanks to Kathryn Calhoun Dennis. Dennis, the star of Bravo’s “Southern Charm,” is a true Southerner, born in Charleston and raised on her family plantation in the countryside surrounding the historical town. With an understanding and a love for both town and country living, Kathryn is the true essence of what it is to be a Southern Belle.

Her pedigree, mapped out in her three names, is a rare culmination of historically significant families. She is the granddaughter of Senator Rembert Coney Dennis, who served 50 years in the South Carolina senate. When he retired in 1989, he left behind a prolific legacy and is known as the last political giant of that era in South Carolina. The reality star is also a direct descendent of John C. Calhoun, 7th Vice President of the United States under Presidents John Quincey Adams and Andrew Jackson and was part of the “Great Triumvirate” who dominated American politics for much of the first half of the 19th century.

Dennis herself has followed in her family’s footsteps: she now works in politics on both the state and Federal levels. She is committed to giving back to her community and to preserving the southern values that she was raised upon.

“What is etiquette? Put simply, it’s a set of rules and regulations dictated to a group of people by a dominant society. As a woman who tends to stick her stilettos through the status quo, I knew I couldn’t write some antiquated guideline on how long your skirt can be or how to discern the salad fork. However, I do have values I believe we should all live by.” And without further ado, here, this charming Southerner shares seven tips on etiquette worthy of a refined Southern woman.


KD Photo 2Photo Credit: J Michael Walker

1. To start a conversation, use the magic words “Tell me…” and be genuinely interested. It puts people at ease and opens doors for a deeper conversation and maybe even some unexpected gossip.

2. Always say please and thank you. Even if you are not pleased about something or thankful for it.

3. You can act like a lady and still show strength. Being “seen and not heard” is an archaic way of thinking for women in the South. Be seen and be heard! Just try not to overdo it (which I have failed to do so but at the end of the day, I always seem to get my point across).

4. Only hand out compliments when you sincerely mean them. Insecurities are easier to read than you would think and sincerity is more treasured these days; as it has become rare.

5. In the words of my late Grandmother, “pretty is as pretty does.” If you act like a queen, you will be treated like one.

6. A lady always does the right thing even when it is not expected of her. For example, a lady will always bless someone else’s reputation, even that of someone whom has attempted to curse hers. Let nature take its course and allow it to reveal others’ skeletons. Darkness always comes to light.

7. Finally, a classic tip: Always respect your elders.