Converging Styles

SC Homes & Gardens Magazine (December 2006)
Text: Penny Starr.
Photography: Richard Leo Johnson Architect: Group 3 Design
Builder: T.D. Reese Construction
Landscape design: Pat Carthauser

A wealth of words can be used to describe Lynne and Bert Einloth's Colleton River home, with its stunning lagoon views from almost every room, an interior accented with beautiful antiques, original art, architectural features and decorative details that create a stately yet cozy atmosphere. Add to that Lynne's talent as a professional interior designer and a long list of artists and artisans who contributed their skills to the mix, and the result is definitely one-of-a-kind.

"It's certainly not your typical home," says architect Rick Clanton of Group 3 Design on Hilton Head Island. "It's definitely what Lynne and Bert wanted.
"We just clicked," Lynn says of collaborating with Clanton. "He's delightful to work with."

Clanton describes the exterior of the 3,900-square-foot home as "English country," with an "arts and crafts" feel inside. Lynne calls the home's style "eclectic Cotswold."

No matter how you characterize it, though, the home undoubtedly reflects the lifestyle and tastes of its owners, from the lush courtyard at the entry showcasing Lynne's green thumb, to Bert's large, comfortable and tastefully appointed home office--accessible through a "secret" doorway in the master bedroom's walk-in closet.

It was Clanton's work, in fact, that helped persuade Lynne to agree to move here from the couple's home in Stamford, Conn. While touring Colleton River, she saw another Group 3 Design home. "I said, "If I can have a home like that, I will move here,' " Lynne recalls.

The Einloths moved into their home, built by T.D. Reese Construction and landscaped by Pat Carthauser, two years ago.

In planning their home, Lynne put into practice what she advises her own clients to do. "I literally just tore pages from magazines."

She also brought some of her most treasured art pieces and furniture to incorporate into the home's decor, including an Oriental jardiniere dating to the 1800s, a French refectory table also from the 1800s, French ladder back chairs, and a hand-painted coffee table from Brazil.

In the dining room, an English stone base with high relief serves as the base of the beveled glass table, and Italianate hand-painted sconces decorate the walls. The master bedroom features an heirloom Empire style table from the early Victorian era that belonged to Lynne's grandmother and a late 1800s linen press that now is used to house a television.

In almost every room, two of Lynne's favorite things are prominent: original paintings and tassels. Ranging from simple to luxurious, the tassels can be found on lamps, cabinet doors and other more whimsical locations. "I love tassels," Lynne says. "They're like the icing on the cake. They take an ordinary piece and dress it up."

In the great room, one painting is installed above the dining nook in place of draperies, and in the guest room parlor, another painting is hung strategically on a cabinet that is disguised as another wall-like space. Paintings aren't the only art in the Einloth home. Beverly Elmore of Decorative Faux Finishes is responsible for the varying styles of faux finishes on the walls in many rooms, including the powder room, the bookshelf wall in the dining room and the ceiling in Bert's office. Artist Nancy Mitchell painted floral designs on the ceilings of both guest rooms. Even the floors of the dining room feature artistic talent. Concrete Design of Savannah provided the acid-washed and scored cement floors in a checkerboard design.

Clanton says one of the most unique aspects of the house design reflects the Einloths' love of entertaining family and friends. "They didn't want a living room," he says. Lynne adds it's a room that rarely gets used.

So the large and airy entry into the Einloth home, with a lagoon view, leads through a wine room to the heart of the home--a warm and spacious kitchen and great room. The kitchen features a huge island that also serves as a dining table, and acid-washed granite counter tops. Both the wine room and the kitchen boast copper sinks, and the island also is covered with copper.

Family portraits dot the top of an antique baby grand piano, located in one corner of the cathedral-ceiling great room, with richly stained beams arching across it.

The color scheme throughout the home includes ochre, "driftwood" grays and browns, onyx and pearl white, with bright accent colors. The guest room parlor is what Lynne calls her "whimsical" room, painted in three shades of green with brightly colored furniture and decor.

While much of the home could fit into the English cottage theme, there are many Asian touches throughout, from Chinese wedding boxes to the parasols that Lynne configured as a light fixture in the guest sitting room."Someone once said I would be drawn to (Asian styles) and I said no," Lynne recalls. "But it happened."

Clanton says the process from drawing board to dream home includes asking his clients to make of "wish list" and he begins sketches from there. Then the sketches are refined to reflect the final design. "It's very much an evolutionary process," he says.

Looking out of the master bedroom window with its sweeping view of the lagoon and a northeast exposure that lights up the space with bright sunshine, Lynn says it's a process that created exactly the home they hoped for.

"We love this vista," she says. "It's marvelous."

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