How to Design Your Luxe Mountain Dream Home

The Cashiers Designer Showhouse in a charming North Carolina town offers plenty of tips for making your getaway an escape from the ordinary.

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Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

Photo By: Tomas Espinoza

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Little Mountain Cabin

A radical break from the rustic mountain cabin with a design motif of pinecones, bears and rainbow trout, this stunning Cashiers, North Carolina home was the site of the 2018 Cashiers Designer Showhouse sponsored by Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles and the Cashiers Historical Society. Rooms instead featured big city flair considering most designers hailed from Atlanta, but also from New Orleans, and the Highlands and Cashiers, North Carolina region. Inspired by chateaux in France and Italy, this 42-acre estate overlooking Lake Glenville was decorated with some au courant trends including lots of assertive, stylish wallpaper, a preponderance of soft pastels, plenty of Chinoiserie and subtle nods to the beautiful local surroundings in botanicals and floral motifs.

First Look

The dramatic foyer of the Cashiers Designer Showhouse in the North Carolina mountains promises a very different kind of vacation cabin experience.

All Dressed Up

A pretty dressing room upstairs from Atlanta designer Sande Beck features a charming wallpaper with colorful birds and a mix of antique and newer pieces. "Wallpaper is more expensive than paint" says Beck, "but you keep it forever."

Curtains = Cozy

Several rooms in the Cashiers Designer Showhouse used curtains on walls rather than windows to create a feeling of plush comfort. Says designer Sande Beck of this upstairs dressing room and bath, "we didn't want it to be too precious. We wanted pretty." To that end they used drapery to hide unappealing cabinets and a timeless blend of old and new in the room with a mix of vintage pieces and fresh new details. Soft pink grasscloth on the ceiling creates a finished look and a mix of framed and unframed art does much to keep things from becoming too precious.

Well-Curated Dressing Table

Think of dedicating a space in your bedroom or bathroom to getting ready. Nothing makes a night out special like a place reserved for a beautifully curated grouping of grooming essentials. The dressing table is a classic idea we'd love to see brought back.

Art Makes the Room

A lovely unframed painting of a bouquet of flowers echoes the actual bouquet on this dressing room's vanity. Choosing not to frame art is a great way to save money and gives your room a fresh, modern look.

Color and Texture

A master class in mixing a variety of elements to create a harmonious design, this dressing room shelf makes use of glass, marble, metal and velvet to keep the eye inspired.

Sleep In

Plush draping on this canopy bed, a Barbara Westbrook Italian queen, luxurious wall-to-wall carpeting and the decorative flourish of a round mirror give a comfortable sense of enclosure in this large-scale, sumptuous master bedroom.

Masterful Bed

The ground floor master bedroom from Atlanta's Janie Wilburn offers stunning views of Lake Glenville, even from the sumptuous canopied bed.

View to a Thrill

Designer Janie Wilburn incorporated a seating area featuring antique French wooden chairs into her master bedroom for good reason: the spectacular views of the landscape available right outside the window.

Dressing Room

Just off the master bedroom is a spacious master bath featuring two dressing areas and a step down shower room that gives the feeling of a spa-like oasis. One theme of this showhouse was the variety of high quality artwork and novel ways to display it including this vintage French cartoon displayed on a stand-alone easel.

Feminine Allure

A nook dedicated to fashion off of the master bathroom designed by Janie Wilburn is just right for a dressing area. The space features a custom folding screen, vintage fashion sketches and soft, feminine colors of ivory and robin's egg blue in the folding screen, antique French cane chair and wall color.

Luxurious Soak

Designer Douglas Hilton of DWH Designs likes to mix styles in his rooms, from classic to contemporary as seen in his guest bathroom for the Cashiers Designer Showhouse. He also advises homeowners work with galleries when sourcing artwork for their home. When you work through a gallery, they have already vetted the work. And when you establish a relationship over time, the gallery begins to know your style and taste and can make specific recommendations says Hilton.

Lucky Guests

A ground floor guest room by designer Douglas Hilton incorporates plenty of color and luxe details including hue-of-the-moment peacock blue.

Soaking in the Art

Designer Douglas Hilton's ground floor guest bath is a sumptuous study in art and nature with a soaking tub, sculpture, a striking oil painting and stunning Christian Lacroix for Designer's Guild wallpaper that references the great outdoors with cheeky style.

Rustic Chic Kitchen

An open, light-drenched kitchen from designer Sara Brown manages to combine luxury and a rustic feel with its combination of wood cabinets, plants and the beautiful grain of the marble countertops and backsplash.

Let the Light In

No need for window treatments when the windows are this beautifully designed. Geometric planters filled with succulents placed between these windows echo their striking beveled design.

In the Pink

Designer Sara Brown created this fresh vignette that shows how easily and casually contemporary photography can be incorporated into a design scheme and easily changed out. Brown leaned the white matted and framed photograph against the kitchen counter and added a touch of color with some nicely complementary millennial pink dishes and gold salt cellars.

Breakfast Nook Art

Designer Sara Brown takes the novel approach of hanging artwork from decorative brass chains on the French doors leading from the breakfast room to the patio. Metal containers filled with succulents and pebbles bring a welcome touch of green to the room.

Flight of Fancy

Designers could not resist bringing the outdoors indoors in their rooms, as with this lyrical display of porcelain butterflies gracing a wall in Sara Brown's breakfast room.

Pastel Pops

It was hard to miss the predominance of pastel hues in this year's Cashiers Designer Showhouse. Shades of pink, soft blue and mint green graced many of the rooms and the prevalence of glass like this oversized bowl filled with smaller pink vases added to the sense of lightness throughout the home.

Bring Your Garden Inside

No matter how you do it, bring life and beauty to your home with plants and flowers. Designer Sara Brown has incorporated multiple potted houseplants and succulents into both her kitchen and breakfast room design scheme. Her clever arrangement of pink glass vases inside a larger vessel and simple stems of Queen Anne's lace show how to incorporate even wildflowers and simple arrangements into your home as an alternative to expensive arrangements of cut flowers.

Crisp, Captivating Red

Brilliant contrast for these white walls in a compact bathroom by Bill Cook and Michael Faust of Atlanta's Vermilion Designs Interiors, red lampshades and a scarlet skirt for the sink bring a modern punch to the space.

Woodland Theme

A vintage Swedish poster and adorable wallpaper from Spoonflower is the highlight of this Carriage House powder room from Vermilion Design Interiors with offices in both Atlanta and Highlands, North Carolina. Designer Bill Cook of Vermilion was inspired by the home's name, Foxtail, and so decided to decorate this bath appropriately. Cook says he "thought that this was the bath of a rather flamboyant and elusive fox who had escaped the hunt and flaunted his friends and family on the walls...swiping a couple of the red wool British hunting jackets and repurposing them as sink and window treatments."

Fox and Friends

This woodsy and witty bathroom from Vermilion Design Interiors took its cue from a fox who designer Bill Cook says decorated this carriage house bath with some of his favorite things. Cook adds that, "while our main space of the apartment was inspired by a country English gentleman’s den, we chose to give the bathroom more of a sense of whimsy and humor. We even had a bar set up, because we felt that this Fox was a bit of a playboy."

Tranquil Space

Shades of white and green and plenty of flora decor bring the outdoors in in this solarium by Francie Hargrove. Even more use of outside inside: the novel incorporation of the relaxing sound of water in a water fountain at one end of this pretty room.

Water Works

An indoor fountain is a novel addition to this sunroom.

Ode to Nature

The ground floor solarium designed by designer Francie Hargrove of Highlands, North Carolina, brings in elements of the natural setting outdoors with a display of antlers and framed, pressed botanicals. A fern motif on the curtains and floral pillows continue the nods to the great outdoors.

Host With the Most

The solarium features a curated bar with set-ups for gin and tonics. Why not create a different bar in each room for a party, with a drink themed to each?

Knock Out Light

A striking space age style light fixture in the foyer atrium demonstrates the power of statement lighting.

Formalist Foyer

We could all take lessons from Atlanta designer Whitney Ray's impressive foyer console. The ideal blend of art and design, Ray cleverly uses both the top and the underside of this console to display framed art and decorative elements. The mix of representational and abstract art suggests a mini-museum exhibition amidst the obvious functionality of providing a perch for foyer lighting.

Meet and Greet

A wonderfully thoughtful addition to any foyer design plan, a comfortable bench to put on or take off boots or wait for a ride is one of the design insights offered by Wyeth Ray Interiors.

Curation Station

Here, here to another beautifully put-together foyer arrangement from Atlanta designer Whitney Ray. Don't keep your most beautiful antiquarian books hidden away in a library or on a book shelf: display their gorgeous covers in a sideboard or coffee table tableaux.

Preppy Panoply

Pattern and more pattern adds up to an ultra-cozy and all-around fun upstairs bedroom by New Orleans designer Susan Currie.

Garden Party

From the white trellis-style valance to the bold grassy wallpaper and vibrant floral throw and curtain panel, this bedroom is a celebration of outdoorsy color. An instructive case in not being afraid to mix your patterns, this room creates cohesion by sticking to a palette of preppy pinks and greens.

Color Storm

Intense colors and a playful mix of fabrics give this upstairs bedroom designed by Susan Currie a lively, spirited vibe.

Make Every Moment Count

An epic hallway on the ground floor of the Cashiers Designer Showhouse has been gorgeously outfitted by Atlanta designers, gallerists and shop owners Huff Harrington with vignettes that break up that long corridor. Gold accents, a 19th century French Chinoiserie commode and a pair of stunning leopard chairs bring attitude to what might have been an overlooked space.

Hall of Frame

A long hallway is a wonderful opportunity to create a gallery for your artwork.

Great View

A hallway designed by Atlanta's Huff Harrington leads to a solarium from Francie Hargrove of Cashiers.

Work Meets Play

We like how designer Lynn Monday thinks in this home office-slash-bar on the showhome's upstairs level. A generous bar on one side is balanced by a sitting area and bookcases on the other, and the large room leads to a balcony with a glorious view of Lake Glenville.

Multi-Purpose Space

This sitting area on the second floor of the Cashiers Designer Showhouse offers the opportunity for getting work done in a private nook, but also entertaining with seating on one side and a bar on the other. Making rooms multi-purpose means every section of your home is used advantageously.

Chinoiserie Glam

A stunning laundry room from Atlanta's Grayson Pratt Interiors makes a daily chore a thing of beauty with Chinoiserie accents including fabric panels placed in cabinets and a statement light fixture overhead.

Mood Board

Redecorating a room or just want to document the process as a piece of decor? This laundry room mood board on a gilt-framed corkboard keeps beautiful track of your design inspiration.

Little Things Mean a Lot

Hexagon gold door knobs and an arrangement of porcelain bibelots make this laundry room about beauty as much as function.

Dining Allure

The elements that make this dining room from Balance Design work so well: dramatic dark walls and an oversized artwork for impact.

Great Stay

Planning a trip to Cashiers, North Carolina? This charming mountain town is home to an array of home design stores and one signature mountain resort, the Lodge at the Chattooga Club that would make a wonderful berth during your mountain visit. Croquet is a huge pursuit at this gorgeous spot with just seven luxurious suites (think gas fireplace, marble bath, Molton Brown products, complimentary wine and snacks and a wonderfully plush, comfortable home-away-from-home feel) and the most spectacular views imaginable.

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