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Palm House at Lake Lanier

Dear friends,

I am really excited to share with you the Design Concept created for us by our architect, C. Brandon Ingram from Atlanta, Georgia.  This is for our forever home at Lake Lanier where we have the little cabin I have featured in a previous post.   Well, we have been systematically giving away, selling off and moving to storage everything in that cabin.  We just got final approval for septic, which is a big deal up at the lake.  It’s rather complicated, but you have to have an engineering firm come out to test the soil, and try to figure out the system and where to put the lines, based on number of bedrooms in the home.  We will have 4 and so that is what we are approved to have in our ranch with a basement!

This is the back or lake side of the original cabin, about to be demolished.  It has served us so well, and it is bittersweet to say goodbye.  But if we are to progress to our forever home and take full advantage of our acre lot, it has to be…


So first let’s start with the site plan.  As you can see, there is an arrival court, 3 car garage, ranch with a basement, pool and terrace.  At the bottom of the site is the Army Corp of Engineers boundary.  We can walk the property and enjoy the beautiful views, but it is their land, not ours.  We can access our dock which is attached via a ramp.


It’s all in the details, and Brandon does not disappoint!  


Here is a black and white rendering- don’t you love the smoke coming out of the chimney?!  They say at the lake you have two fronts on a lake house- the street side and the lake side!



And here is the color version- since visiting with Brandon and the builder about the house, we have decided to paint the brick white on the back facade to make it look like a stately ‘old’ home that has been there for years.  You know the look of a home that may be brand new, but somehow it has an old patina to it that makes it seem as if it just grew up out of the earth.  Now, the roof looks tan here, but will actually be a gun metal gray roof made out of,  you guessed it, metal.  Now you may think metal roofs are less expensive to build, but they are not.  Especially a really good seamed one.  But the upside is that they last forever, that is unless you get a really bad hailstorm.  And in that case, I suppose it’s best not to have shiny silver to exaggerate the dings in the facade.




This is the room that best depicts the inside great room of Palm House.  This home is in Ponte Vedra, Florida, by the amazing Collins Interiors out of Dallas, Texas.  Palm House won’t have this exact look, but does have the scale that we are after.  We will have three sets of double doors across the back as well as three sets across the front.  All will be in alignment with each other to give the house that see-through look that I love!  Isn’t it wonderful to walk up to a home and see all the way out the back side?!  Then, the dormers above will feed light into the main room.  A porch across the entire front and back sides of the home will block the light, but the dormers will bring all the natural light we need to brighten up the space.  One end will have the fireplace and seating area, while the other our old, classic three pedestal dining table and chairs.  I am longing to see it all put together and stand in this room.  It is like having a dream that you can walk into.  Just not quite yet!!  Haha patience is not a virtue I happily stand in, yet what else can I do?


Here is a bedroom by Collins Interiors.  Isn’t it lovely?  Our windows in the master will open to lake views.  I can just see recycled beams like this in the space.  And I will probably use light blues in this space too.  We will have more of a flavor of British West Indies though.  And we have a king four poster rice bed that will look beautiful in the room.


Here is another bedroom inspiration photo by Collins Interiors.  I like the ceiling in this one too, and may be less expensive since the beams are painted instead of stained.  And of course a ceiling fan for us.  I would love to have a beautiful chandelier in the master bedroom but necessity dictates a fan- we sleep with one whirring away in all seasons.  Can’t live without my fan!

I do not have a source for this photo, but this is a bit like I envision the back porch.  It won’t be screened in, but it will have all the doors across the backside, and those doors will be 8 feet tall, giving the room loads of potential to open up the house to the porch for circulation during parties or family holidays.  We are a family of 7 currently, as my 88 year old Mom Bootsie will be moving in with us once we are built.  I am working with the builder and the wonderful Madeline at Ferguson hardware to make the suite for Bootsie handicap accessible.

Here is another photo of the Ponte Vedra home by Collin Interiors

What I am not quite sure about yet is whether or not I will use drape panels on the three sets of double doors across the back.  While I love the way drape panels warm up a space and give it a presence, the view out the back of the home may be all that is necessary.  I am one that really likes to walk through a space and let it speak to me, tell me what it needs.  I guess I am a house whisperer haha!  They will tell you what they want if you let them.  Not in a creepy voice but more like a subtle wind blowing through the curtains sort of way.  You just have to listen!


Here is a look at another room at the Ponte Vedra home designed by Collins Interiors.  How fabulous is that ceiling?  We have a room off of the kitchen that will have windows all around with great views.  While I love the idea of a room just like this, I think ours will play out more with a table for eating for just my husband and I and a sofa and some really comfy chairs.  I won’t know this room and where it is going either until I can walk into it and again, it can whisper to me what it needs to be perfectly mine.  Not perfect, just right for us and the way we live.   I seriously love the baby blue drape panels in this room.  They don’t mess with the view one single bit, but they’re such a lovely addition to warm the space visually.

P Four Design

We will have a transition hallway from the front doors to the main room.  I don’t want to just walk into the home without a welcome hallway first.  If you look right you will see a vestibule to my mother Bootsie’s suite, and to the left will be our office where I will have to do some changes to our current mess!  Since it will be so visible, I think this is important.  Also, we will have a ‘dirty office’ like some homes these days have a dirty kitchen, where the dishes go while guests are still there, so no one feels the need to help the hostess clean up!  Of course in our home, everyone is invited to chip in, especially the grown kids (4 of them) to make Mom’s (me) life easier.  I like lots of folks in the kitchen.  But I digress.  Our dirty office will be a place for washer and dryer, dog wash, and a desk for the computer and paper… somehow paper ends up in our current kitchen and it drives me crazy!  My precious architect calls it our Family Studio!  Being a bit of a neat freak, I hate mail coming in and staying awhile.  And it does.  Oh I have systems to place it where it needs to go, but still somehow there it is when I don’t want to see as much as a scrap of it lying around.  Hence our new ‘dirty office’.  I think it is a great idea.  I think there will even be room for a butler’s pantry for all those entertaining pretties I use a few times a year but need to be able to see them to know what I have.  Years of accumulation will do that to you, and if you can’t see it, you forget you even have some of these lovely pieces to use for entertaining!  Maybe we will even have one of those rolling ladders to gain access to the tall shelves, since the ceilings will be tall.

So having said all of that, this entry hall is my inspiration for ours.  It is light and airy, and the lighter colored wood floors are looking mighty appealing to me!  They have a beautiful color variation and wider planks which I am dreaming of after being in a house with narrow planks.  I’m also digging the old beams and painted ceiling for drama.  And three pendants along the way are dreamy.  My decorator instincts went into swoon mode when I saw this picture on my Instagram feed.  How about you?  Isn’t it lovely?  I think so too!!

Here is our builder Kirk (right), along with our landscape architect Danny.  Look at that water behind them!!  And that is just the side view- not the big water!!  Oh how I can’t wait to build our forever home with our dream team!  

Historical Concepts

And this sweet home on Spring Island, S.C. is what started this whole journey!  By the rather famous firm, Historical Concepts, this home style had me at Hello!


I can’t wait to share actual pictures with you of the real journey we are about to embark upon!  The plans are ready, the builder is gearing up for us, and I am so excited to be building our dream home!!  Join us, won’t you!?




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