Rooted in Style

This rustic estate proves far more than a garden-variety home, thanks to inviting interiors by Meridy King and a landscape lush with captivating surprises.

After years of longing for the wide-open spaces of the country but still wanting the city within arm’s reach, a family of five discovered their dream domicile in 2003 on a dilapidated Sandy Springs property. The forgotten home offered little besides good bones and three green acres worth digging into. “The house was being sold as a tear-down, but we saw the hidden potential,” says the homeowner.

Thirteen years and a handful of renovations later, the decor was overdue for a face-lift by Meridy King of Meridy King Interiors. Her mission: to highlight the home’s character while keeping in mind the lush gardens and grounds. The homeowners consider the house and gardens as one continuous space, so King channeled the great outdoors into the 10,000-square-foot house to achieve a dreamy but durable design.

Livability was a top priority. With pets, family, frequent houseguests and countless parties, the home needed to be sophisticated but resilient from the elements of day-to-day living. Easy-to-clean limestone and hardwood make for warm, rustic and ultimately forgiving floors, while elegant, fine-lined furnishings add sit-and-stay appeal.

The two-story living room is the heart of the home, where streams of natural light bounce off the crisp white walls that once sported a heavier hue that did no service to the space. The lighter surface now spotlights the wooden-framed windows, beamed ceiling and grand flagstone fireplace. King selected a soft, neutral palette that pulls from the outdoors and reflects the family’s playful personality. Cream upholstered seating adorned with pillows covered in Nancy Corzine and Galbraith & Paul fabrics pops with blues, greens and grays and complements the large abstract painting by artist Madeline Denaro from Pryor Fine Art. 

In the study, a purposely minimalistic use of color on the drapes and rug sets the stage for the room’s breathtaking original woodwork. A contemporary writing desk by Bernhardt pairs with a statement-making Carmen chandelier by Made Goods that’s dripping with elegant strands of coco beads. Relaxed refinement continues in the dining room and light-filled bedrooms, where careful consideration to color gives an effortless elegance to the spaces that share attention with sweeping views of the blooming yard.

The grounds were always revered as a continuation of the main house, with the homeowners investing hundreds of hours into making the outdoors into a true living room. After purchasing the property, the entire yard was dynamited; the unearthed soil was used to build dozens of beds and the large-scale granite boulders were incorporated to frame the yard and act as sculptural artwork. With the help of Adriana Hernandez of Arcoiris Design Gardening, the segmented yard now boasts a bounty of fruitful gardens growing the likes of herbs, hydrangeas, roses and cutting flowers, as well as quiet sitting nooks tucked away throughout the property.

“With Atlanta’s temperate climate, we spend 10 months of the year reaping the benefits of the outdoors, even when we’re inside,” says the homeowner. “Thanks to the light-filled main house opening onto acres of green gardens, we feel like we’re on a continuous vacation.” 

INTERIOR DESIGN Meridy King, Meridy King Interiors. (404) 252-3377; LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTURE Adriana Hernandez, Arcoiris Design Gardening, (404) 438-9955; ARCHITECT Bill Edwards, Edwards Architecture Ltd. (404) 869-2443;