When Eric and Mary Busko decided to move their family of four into a newly built Chastain Park manse requiring loads of design decisions, they knew without hesitation that designer and Stanton Home Furnishings owner Jimmy Stanton—who had worked with the couple on previous projects—was the right man for the job.
Mary, who has ties to the interior design industry herself, first discovered Stanton after seeing his work featured in an issue of Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles. As fate would have it, she found out that Stanton’s Westside showroom was also a registered dealer of some of her favorite furniture manufacturers. She and Eric promptly enlisted him to design their mountain home in Sapphire Valley, North Carolina, and the rest, as they say, is history. “It’s just so fun to work with Jimmy because he’s always positive; he’s such a great person inside and out,” says Mary. “I feel lucky that he took us on again.”
The admiration was mutual. “I think we worked so well together with the first home, they let me have full rein,” says Stanton of this Chastain Park project, which required his input on everything from wood floor finishes and paint selections to important interior design decisions.
The first order of business was to replace the existing front door with a wide expanse of metal floor-to-ceiling windows. To brighten the home’s dark exterior, Stanton gave the new brick a fresh coat of white paint, which was also applied to the exterior limestone, an unconventional move that would ultimately prove to be one of the Buskos’ most-loved touches.
When it came to the interior decisions, Mary found herself gravitating toward a minimalistic, white palette after looking to magazines and Pinterest for inspiration. Daunted by the idea of living in an all-white home, she was initially hesitant to trust her instinct, but Stanton convinced her to go with her gut, suggesting that they incorporate rich color in the more formal spaces, such as the walls of the dining room and the parlor on either side of the home’s commanding entry foyer.
“When you walk in the front door all you see is white; then to the left the dark gray dining room, and to the right, you see the dark khaki parlor,” says Stanton “They’re like two jewel boxes.”
True to his word, Stanton kept the rest of the home white, which creates a bright, peaceful glow throughout thanks daylight streaming in through to its multitude of windows. “We wanted a clean, fresh look, with all of the beautiful windows letting in bright light and greenery,” he says.
This scheme is perhaps most evident in what proved to be the Buskos’ and Stanton’s favorite area of the home: the adjoining kitchen, living room and breakfast areas, which give the appearance of a single, large living space.
In the kitchen, Stanton replaced a standard window above the sink with a large iron-framed one that “completely changed the space,” the designer says. “I feel that simple, clean and classic is always the best.”
Large, iron-framed windows also overlook the sprawling backyard and pool. “To me that’s part of the room,” says Eric. “There’s something like 19 windows, so it’s very bright. I love how all three rooms all have their own personality, but they fit well together. It’s very lively and inviting.”
Both designer and clients couldn’t be happier with the project’s outcome. “It’s a great house for entertaining,” says Mary. “We like to have bunches of friends over for dinner or music. Jimmy’s a gift in so many ways.”