Jason Bolden And Adair Curtis On Their Favorite Christmas Cocktails, Traditions And How To Do The Holiday In Style
Lexus Gallegas/Courtesy of Grand Marnier

As a go-to stylist and beloved interior designer for the A-list, as well as founders of the multidisciplinary creative shop JSN Studios, Jason Bolden and Adair Curtis spent most of 2021 working nonstop. But with the Christmas holiday and the celebration of the upcoming new year, the star couple is getting the chance to slow down and really make special moments with loved ones, including, most importantly, their soon-to-be 9-month-old son, Arrow. Their plans involve some volunteering, dressing themselves and their home well, and Grand Marnier. They’re big fans of the brand of orange liqueur and shared with us holiday cocktails they’re excited to make for friends and family. They also chatted with us about how we can get in the holiday spirit in regards to what we wear and how we can create photo-ops in different corners of our home for small family gatherings, and their favorite holiday traditions, including the beautiful one they’re looking to start for their son.

ESSENCE: You both have been married almost 10 years! What is one of your favorite holiday traditions that you’ve made together?

Adair Curtis: The last (almost) decade has been incredible and it’s gone by so fast! One of our favorite holiday traditions we’ve made together is traveling. Whether that be a tropical island with friends for Thanksgiving or our annual trips to St. Louis where Jason was born and raised, the change in environment and seeing new things always inspires us.

How does Grand Mariner fit into your celebrations this season? Is there a cocktail you are looking forward to having and/or making for guests and loved ones?

Jason: Grand Marnier is a staple in our home, especially around the holidays! We love hosting friends and family this time of year, so it’s really a go-to for entertaining because it’s so versatile. Not everyone is going to have the same taste in cocktails, so we love offering a few cocktails when we host. Our welcome cocktail is the classic Grand 75 — its base is Grand Marnier Cordon Rouge but adds a celebratory touch since it’s topped with champagne. We also love serving the G&G (super simple with Grand Marnier, lime and ginger beer!), Grand Old Fashioned, fun twists on the margarita and more.

Jason, when people think Christmas, they think red and green, chunky knit, fair isle and ugly sweaters, and plaid. What can we do to look festive and chic for last-minute gatherings, parties and the actual Christmas Day that’s outside of the box?

Jason: It’s never been easier to look festive and chic for whatever the gathering. Focus on metallic colors (gold and silver), crystal and anything that sparkles as your holiday-approved look!

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Lexus Gallegas/Courtesy of Grand Marnier

Adair, I know you mentioned setting up the stairway in your home as a space for a regal holiday photo op. What other corners and unconventional spaces are perfect to spruce up for something like that?

Adair: Every corner of your home presents an opportunity to show off your holiday best. From decking out your front door with garland and lights to your entry table with miniature trees and holiday-scented candles, you should treat every surface as its own special little world!

Lastly, what can’t you go without this time of year that makes you think warmly of the season?

Adair: We love putting out a bottle of Grand Marnier on our bar cart — it looks just as beautiful as decor as it does in your cocktails! The red ribbon subtly signifies classic holiday and always piques guests’ interest.

This is your first Christmas with your son. What is a tradition you’d like to put in place for him for years to come?

Adair and Jason: During the year, we’re constantly on the go so for the holidays, it’s all about slowing things down and spending time with our family and friends. With that, we’re excited to start the tradition of showing our son the importance of counting your blessings and paying it forward, all year long, but especially during the holidays. It’ll be a tradition of volunteering our time and sharing our resources with under-resourced families.