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Kiawah Island: Architectural Treasures

My small piece of paradise sits on Kiawah Island South Carolina. We have had a second home there well since Hilaire was 7 years old…let’s see that is 16 years. I never get tired of my visits to the island and the architectural treasures I find each time go. I always spend a day on my bike touring the island and taking pictures. Below are some of the places I visited when I was there last month.


The architecture of this home is inspired by the Voysey english country arts and crafts style. Built by Simonini Builders of Charlotte it looks perfectly at home in the low country setting.


I always marvel at the quality of the brick work and tabby stucco of the low country trades.


It takes a special artisan to construct groin arches in brick! They were really magnificent in person…


Even I was blown away by this entry feature of stone and slate. The slate “cap” is beautifully executed in staggered lengths turned on its side.


These stones that seperate the street from the drive look as if they have been there for hundreds of years.


More Voysey inspired rooflines….


Even the boat dock to the Kiawah River has architectual appeal!


Architecture is art…all subjective. I can identify 4 different historic styles in this single family residence on the ocean. Interesting to say the least…I am just not sure it knows what it wants to be when it grows up.


Even mother nature creates beautifully orchestrated structures on the island.


A beautiful example of unpretentious low country architecture.
Tell me about your favorite places to visit for inspriation?

Charleston: Smith Killian Art Gallery (My Favorite!)

I just got back from a week at our place on Kiawah Island just 21 miles south of Charleston. It it one of my favorite places on earth. While I am there I cannot resist going gallery hopping in Charleston…and my favorite gallery is Smith Killian Gallery. Pieces by two of the featured artists, Betty Anglin Smith and Shannon Smith have made it into my private collection….
my newest piece is by Shannon Smith called Seven a.m. I will feature it as soon as it arrives.

Below are some of their most recent works. Leigh, director of the gallery is great to work with and I know she would love to send some art to Raleigh for you to see! Call me and I will be glad to arrange it.

The Gallery at 9 Queen Street, Charleston

Weighing Shrimp by Shannon Smith

Low Tide by Betty Anglin Smith

Dock Mates and Fish Market by Shannon Smith

Full Moon Rising, II by Betty Anglin Smith

Last Light by Betty Anglin Smith


My Favorite Photos from a Recent Installation

Here is a sneak peak at a work in progress nearing completion. I was able to create a totally new look for these clients by changing the fabrics on some of their existing pieces and adding in some new pieces along the way. The result is something new, fresh and different than what they had previously.

The new master bedroom chaise, nest of tables and mercury glass accessories create an inviting spot to read by the fireplace.

I worked closely with the Atlanta showroom Ainsworth-Noah, the east coast representative for New Classic Creations who master-crafted the master bed to our specifications.

The open family room, kitchen and breakfast room are the heart of the home. The new hutch was a perfect compliment to their breakfast table and chairs, and the new upholstry in the family room worked perfectly with their rug.

By adding window treatments and an accent bolster for the bed, the guest bedroom takes on a whole new personality.

The custom foot thows made from a Ralph Lauren woven fabric trimmed in a Lee Jofa cut velvet are my favorite addition to this secondary guest bedroom. My insiration came from the new Romo fabric at the windows.

Designers Support Returning Vets Through ASID Foundation

I thought you would like to learn about the good work the ASID Foundation is involved in. I am on the Board of Trustees and although I have held many positions with National ASID, this by far is the most rewarding. One of our new initiatives will help the brave men and women who return home from war.

“Through a new partnership with the organization Rebuilding Together and its Veterans Housing Initiative, the ASID Foundation is helping to provide safe, sustainable and accessible housing for active duty and retired members of the Unitied States Armed forces who own homes, yet are in desperate need of assistance. The fact is that many of these men and women cannot afford the cost of home maintienance and often times are physically unable to modify or maintain their homes.”

31,000 service members have been wounded in Iraq and Afghanistan…the need is huge and will be even more dire as they return home.

Designers have stepped up and have contributed thousands of dollars to the Foundation to begin this important work. You do not have to be a designer to contribute.

Contact me at or to learn how you can support the ASID Foundation.

Well worth the wait

Some of you may or may not know that I moved at the end of November 2007. I have to tell you I have a new appreciation for what my clients go through when finishing the building of a new home and moving.

Part of the fun of moving for me was to be able to finally have the space for all the wonderful things we have at our fingertips from the design world. One of those things I was dying for was a rug from Niba…so low and behold I have a custom 17′ runner on order due in sometime in March. Yes, designers get no preferential treatment…I still had to wait 4 months!

But to increase the anticipation of the rug’s arrival the owner of Niba, Beth Arrowood, did a very smart thing. She sent this picture of the work in progress. It is truly something to think that this one of a kind rug was made by human hands over a period of months…for me!

Their designs are incredible so the next time you stop in to the studio ask to see the portfolio.