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The Experience of a Lifetime: Cashiers Showhouse 2018

By: Stephanie Andrews

As you know, we were selected to design the dining room for the Atlanta Homes and Lifestyles annual Cashiers showhouse. At first we thought, “There’s no way we can pull this off in such a short timeframe!” This was completely new territory for us, and to be honest we were nervous about how we could transform this room in less than six weeks!

With not a moment to lose, the Shelby Adamson/Stephanie Andrews dream team headed up this massive project and discussed (with vigor) the use of the room, aesthetic inspiration, and ultimately the stylistic direction. Both were instantly inspired by the tile serpent on the floor that the homeowner had taken over a year to lay by hand herself. We chose Farrow & Ball Studio Green for the walls as the base of the dramatic atmosphere that only a dining room of this caliber can manage with ease. We also wanted to celebrate the beautiful acreage surrounding the home, so we set to finding the perfect set of trees to make an impact in the room (with 15 foot ceilings, this was no simple task).

We sought the help of incredibly talented artist and designer Steve McKenzie to create a massive, dramatic painting for the main wall. This giant triptych measured nine feet tall by six feet wide, and we could not have been more thrilled to work with Steve on it. And the result? We think it speaks for itself.

So what did we learn from this entire experience?
1. Sometimes you just gotta do something risky and outside your comfort zone — it’ll work out!
2. The other designers in the showhouse were not only extremely talented, they were also a lot of fun and super supportive.
3. Our favorite vendors really went out of their way to help us, graciously providing the furnishings to make our room sparkle. We cannot thank you enough! (Special shoutout to Steve McKenzie, Verde Home, Direct Furniture, and Trinity Mercantile.)
4. The Balance Design team cleans up beautifully at a black tie gala!

The entire home is awe inspiring, so if you want to get away from the heat, head to the cool mountain paradise of Cashiers, NC. Tickets are available through the Cashiers Historical Society website (https://www.cashiershistoricalsociety.org/showhouse) but hurry! This is the last weekend!

Atlanta Homes & Lifestyle’s Cashiers Showhouse

By: Shelby Adamson

We are incredibly honored to be chosen to design the dining room at this year’s Cashiers designer show house by Atlanta Homes & Lifestyle Magazine! The Cashiers Historical Society hosts this event each year as its largest annual fundraiser. This year’s home is a Mediterranean style villa situated on 42 acres, graciously donated by Terry and Brenda Beye.

The dining room boasts 15 feet high ceilings and an Ouroboros inlaid into the stone floor by the homeowner herself. We embraced these serpents and gave the room a dramatic feel while incorporating the beautiful scenic landscape. We almost immediately decided to paint the walls Studio Green by Farrow & Ball (kindly donated by Verde Home), a sultry and moody black-green that makes the room feel cozy and comfortable. We really took advantage of the high ceilings (and brought the outdoors in) by flanking Steve McKenzie’s gorgeous black and white triptych painting with a pair of sculptural Japanese snowbell trees.

To complement the inlaid stone serpents and give a nod to the mosaic’s eastern feel, we adorned the grand table with coral and white ginger jars (loaned to us by our friends at Trinity Mercantile & Design) and flanked them with two jade foo dogs. The result is a dining experience that embodies a Mediterranean courtyard, where one feels that they are enjoying a meal alfresco in a dramatic space that tantalizes all of the senses.

Serene and Strong: Zen Gardens

By: Danielle Clockel

Everyone needs a place they can go to be still and quiet, and unwind from the stress of the day. For some, that place is a comfy chair nestled within a room in the home. For others, it’s a luxurious bath. And still others find their peace in nature. The garden has long been a place to go to reflect and regroup, and none is more up to this task than Japanese zen gardens. (I mean, it’s in the name!)

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Photo courtesy of Pinterest.

While they are called “rock gardens,” don’t think you have to completely forsake your beloved plants. Most zen gardens heavily feature stonework and pebbles, but mossy patches and petite trees are also right at home here.

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Photo courtesy of Pinterest.

Maybe you just don’t have a green thumb. Hey, we’re not judging you. Immerse yourself in the meditative process of raking intricate swirls (symbolizing ripples on water) into the pebble gravel of your rock garden. It may be neutral in color, but this garden has visual interest galore!

Minimalism may be a common theme in these kinds of gardens, but don’t fret, maximalists — you can still go big! Shapely trees, peaceful ponds, meandering bridges, different levels…this garden has it all.

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Photo courtesy of Damien Douxchamps.

You can still feature color even if you’re more into rocks than roses. Different stones have different hues, and arranging them in a geometric patchwork creates a fun, modern look.

Because of Atlanta’s climate, it’s easy for us to get wrapped up in landscapes full of lush greenery and bright flowers. But that’s not the only way to turn your outdoor space into a personal paradise! Just picture yourself in the quiet serenity of these zen gardens, and find your inner peace.