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An Exquisite Mélange

The visions of a talented cadre of creative teams came to life at the 2012 Flat Rock Designer Showhouse.

Photo by David Dietrich

Photo by David Dietrich

Once the summertime retreat of the Low Country gentry, Flat Rock is justifiably proud of its heritage. “Little Charleston of the Mountains,” as it was known in the 1800s, boasts dozens of exquisite antebellum “summer cottages” — grand estates, actually — and many other period structures that give the village a unique charm.

Fortunately, the village also has an active community organization, Historic Flat Rock, Inc., with over 600 members dedicated to preserving this architectural legacy for future generations. This summer, the organization held its biennial fundraiser, the Designer Show House, at “Interlude,” the gracious, French Château style home of Dr. Allan and Mrs. Lynn Huffman.

At Interlude, the past meets the present. Designed by Frank Snodgrass and built by Paul Taylor, the 1997 estate incorporates traditional elements such as arched doorways and windows and refined landscapes by Ed Lastein with modern features: an open floor plan, abundant natural light and multi-level terraces. Personal touches — secret passageways and an extraordinary spiral staircase in the library — designed and built by Forest Millwork — provide added interest.

A talented cadre of designers was enlisted to transform Interlude into an exquisite mélange of decorating styles and visions — each unique, yet sympathetic to the home’s classic references. Legendary designer Carleton Varney of Dorothy Draper, Inc. was on hand to offer a keynote presentation, encourage the creative endeavors and present his eponymous award for excellence. But a stroll through Interlude confirms that every room is a winner — treasuring the precedent and inspiring the future.

View a slideshow of the showhouse.

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