You might know Carson Kressley from his role in the original "Queer Eye" Fab Five, where he served as the show's resident fashion expert. Maybe you've seen his design show on Bravo, "Get a Room With Carson and Thom." But did you know that the celebrity stylist and fashion designer has an entirely separate, hilariously charming alter-ego? We sure didn't!
Carson revealed to us his surprising "gentleman farmer" side when he took us on an exclusive and highly entertaining tour of his Pennsylvania farm house.
"Sometimes people think that I am just a jetsetting New York City fashionista. And that is part of my life, but I come from a long line of farmers," the designer says.
"My family has lived in this part of Pennsylvania since the middle 1800s. I do not pretend to be a farmer — it is very hard work. I like to think of myself as a gentleman farmer. That means that you live on a farm but you don't get super dirty," he adds with a laugh.
Carson says that when he first bought the farmhouse, he told his friends that it was going to be very understated. Obviously, the end result didn't exactly turn out to be subtle. But, like the stylist says, "I'm genetically fabulous. I can't help it!"
The sunroom is one of Carson's favorite rooms on the property. "It's a super cozy place to be every season of the year. I love the view in here because you can look out and see the horses grazing and you can see the barns," he says. "And the entire style of my house is basically equestrian theme park."
Next up is the den, a big entertaining space where Carson can watch movies. There's a large fireplace in the den where Carson reveals that he "tried roasting chestnuts once, [but] it went terribly wrong."
He loves to go to flea markets to find unique pieces, like this horse-printed scarf that he framed and hung on the wall. "They make great art. I have them all over my house," Carson continues.
The tour continues in Carson's "boudoir," where all the magic happens. (Or where it would, but "it's not really magic because I'm here mostly by myself," he admits.)
Some notable pieces in his bedroom include a sign hanging above the bed that says Carriage Shop — "It's hard to read, but I love that it's all crumbly and old" — and a ceramic bust of a man's head. Carson's explanation for this one? "I don't know where I found him, but sometimes I feel like he's staring at me at night."
Of course he shows us the stone barn, a Pennsylvania German bank barn built into the side of a hill in 1887.
"There's a lot of work to do on the farm. You have to clean stalls and bed stalls and water and feed," Carson says, rocking what looks suspiciously like an Hèrmes belt while shoveling horse poop. "And then the fun part, what you do it all for, is actually getting to ride."
The farm also features a large vegetable garden with tons of heirloom tomatoes. "Look at this one, it's the size of my head!" Carson says.
He picks a bunch of fresh tomatoes and peppers and heads into the kitchen to make a simple salsa. The other ingredients? The juice of one lime, jalapeño, sweet onion, cilantro, cumin, salt and pepper. That's all you need to make what Carson calls "the best salsa" he's ever had. (Not that he's biased! ?)
Carson hopped on his tractor and signed off in hopes of beating the traffic, which we assume he did, because he made it to Rach's kitchen in time for the show (in a crisp white Alexander McQueen suit and Gucci shoes, no less).
"I like Italian spices and shoes," the designer quips. Plus, Carson "brought some bounty" to make his Chicken Pot Pie Soup, which he likes to cook using fresh peas and corn from his garden when they're in season.