Welcome to Palmetto Bluff: Our Lowcountry Showhouse
Nestled in the Lowcountry of South Carolina, our Flower Showhouse reflects the beauty and serenity of its natural surroundings
Situated along the May River in Bluffton, South Carolina, Palmetto Bluff is home to the newest Flower Showhouse. “We love the serenity of this community,” says designer Nellie Howard Ossi. “And the style of this English Country cottage fits perfectly into the setting.”
Nellie partnered with her mother, designer Phoebe Howard, to create a neutral scheme in keeping with the natural beauty of the surroundings. The result is a home that not only fits the needs of the current owner, but also those of future buyers. “There is plenty of room for a family to spread out, as well as spaces that can easily be converted for other uses,” says Nellie.
The owner was first introduced to Palmetto Bluff by her son, Geoffrey Sernyak, the developer of the showhouse and founder of Nashville-based Geofferson & Co. development firm. “She fell in love with the community and, more specifically, with this property because of its expansive views,” Nellie says. “We made sure the interiors complemented those views and did not distract from them, especially off the back of the house.” Working closely with Tippett Sease Baker architecture firm in Montgomery, Alabama, and Atlanta-based builder Young & Meathe, Nellie and Phoebe skillfully captured the beauty and charm of the Lowcountry throughout the home.
The interiors offer a nod to the whitewashed, eclectic aesthetic of the iconic Belgian designer Axel Vervoordt, known for his love of art, antiques, and architecture. “To complement those Belgian influences, we chose a primarily linen fabric scheme,” says Nellie. By using fewer furniture pieces, the designers placed a heavier focus on textures such as iron, reclaimed wood, plaster finishes, and natural stone accents. As Phoebe explains, “It’s a subtle yet sophisticated decorating approach that blends well with the architecture and doesn’t fight the natural beauty of the landscape.”
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Foyer: A dramatic sweeping staircase and art display offer a grand welcome into our Showhouse.
The center of the home and one of the first spaces you see upon entry, the dining area called for memorable pieces such as the oyster chandelier and the perfect stone table.
Larger furniture helps fill this spacious room and a neutral color scheme is complemented by texture in the form of rough-hewn wood beams, a unique mirror over the fireplace and chalky plaster walls.
A cozy offshoot to the living room, the den is the ideal place for intimate gatherings or quiet relaxation.
An oversize island in the kitchen enhances the home’s entertainment factor by serving as a prep area, serving space and seating area.
The roomy main bedroom features tall ceilings, a statement bed, sumptuous fleece bedding, and a warm inviting spot for morning coffee.
Adjoining the bedroom is a luxurious bath with a freestanding soaking tub.
At the top of the stairs, a circular table echoes the curves of the metal stair railing.
Just off the upstairs hall, a home office provides ample workspace for two people and can easily be converted into a bunkroom or nursery.
Tucked away upstairs, two guest bedrooms with ensuite baths are loaded with comfort for overnight visitors.
Off the kitchen, a classic covered porch with a beautiful view serves as an extension of the home’s entertaining space.
Adjacent to the porch, a grassy terrace creates the perfect setting for alfresco dining.
Watch a complete tour of the 2022 Flower Showhouse in Palmetto Bluff and find sources for every room and outdoor space.
Drawing inspiration from the architecture styles of Edwin Lutyens and Axel Vervoordt, builder Young & Meathe and architecture firm Tippett Sease Baker collaborated to create a home resembling a European country gardener’s cottage. The exterior consists of lime-washed, handmade brick walls and a cedar shake roof, as well as large, multi-pane, divided-light windows to frame views and create interesting passages of light.
The one-and-a-half story home includes a large, open, first-floor space that houses family life and gatherings within the kitchen, dining, and living rooms, each area defined with a large bay window. More intimate rooms, such as the den and main suite, juxtapose the common areas. Because the house is one-room deep, every space is bathed in light, which plays off the bright plaster and warm wooden beams and floors. The peninsula porch, accessed off the kitchen, invites breezes and provides views of the marshy landscape beyond.
Designed by AO Studio, the landscape highlights the home’s atypical style, helping it stand out from neighboring houses without being over the top. Surroundings consist of native plantings found on the coast, many selected to create a loose, natural feel with a touch of formality. Natural stone and pavers give rustic, timeless appeal to the areas closest to the house. Multiple outdoor entertaining spaces serve as extensions of the home, with a cohesive palette that complements the interiors.