When an Atlanta family had outgrown their simple North Georgia cottage and it was time for a teardown, they knew they still wanted the style of the new home to reflect its natural setting.
“They wanted the house to look like it belonged, and they desired a rustic cabin attitude but with a sophisticated execution,” says architect Greg Busch. Influenced by the work of acclaimed English architect Edwin Lutyens, Busch used high-end, natural materials with an emphasis on craftsmanship.
Embracing another Lutyens principle, the cedar-shake roof, cypress board-and-batten siding and stacked stones make the home look in harmony with the wooded landscape. Old-growth trees that had to be felled during the process were milled and worked into the design, as were logs retrieved from the lake itself. “There’s no Sheetrock in the entire home,” says Busch. “It’s all varieties of wood, with plaster only in the master bedroom.”
All that wood could read monotonous, but interior designer Meridy King, who collaborated with Busch from the start, added varying stains and washes to keep it dynamic. Even the kitchen backsplash is made of individual pieces of petrified wood, which, along with cabinet fronts in reclaimed oak, gives the space a layer of age and interest.
Having designed the family’s Atlanta home, Meridy knew their lifestyle and needs. Accordingly, everything in the home speaks to the owners’ desire for “authenticity, comfort and durability, with nothing too fussy or fragile,” she says. “They also wanted some color and nothing to do with the white trend. They have a very active, athletic family, so we kept that in mind with our design decisions.”
In addition to sparks of color, varying textures flow throughout—for example, the powder room, joined with pretty terra-cotta tiles in green and off white for the floor. Capacious barstools, outdoor fabrics and put-your-feet-up options speak to a relaxed lakeside atmosphere.
Nothing about the interiors is predictable, due in part to the custom furniture by Brad King (no relation to Meridy). “There was a magnificent white oak tree that had to be removed, and I started to think about how I could bring this tree back to life,” explains Brad. The oak metamorphosed into structural beams, powder room walls and even the dining room table inlaid with a nautical star design in the center. “I liked the idea of a white oak compass to guide you back to the lake.” That is, of course, assuming you ever want to leave.
INTERIOR DESIGN MERIDY KING, Meridy King Interiors (404) 252-3377; meridyking.com. ARCHITECT Greg Busch, Greg Busch Architects (404) 252-8073; gregbusch.com. KITCHEN DESIGNER Cynthia Ziegler, Cynthia Ziegler, Inc. (404) 313-1823; cynthiaziegler.com