Architecture & Design // 5 min Read

Behind the Design: Let There Be Light

Written by Palmetto Bluff

Dec 1, 2020

Abundant natural daylight was the first "must" on the clients' wish list, so Allison Bonner and Evan Goodwin of Pearce Scott Architects knew from the beginning that the design and selection of custom windows would be an important factor in making the project a success. The home, built by Richard Best Custom Homes, in the May River Forest neighborhood of Palmetto Bluff includes a main house and guest suite over the garage. Low-slung roofs work to keep the building's mass from overpowering the surrounding nature and the design team worked to make the most of the wall space in each room.

Large, oversized windows were placed at eye level to maximize views; low windows underneath those were intended to connect the owners to the ground below outside; and angled windows up top let in ample indirect natural light while highlighting the understory of the tree canopy above.

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The low-sloping roofs across the front facade allow for the treetops behind the house to still be visible while approaching from the driveway. Natural, earthy tones were used for the exterior paint selection to further blend the home into the surrounding landscape.

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The single-story wing on the right side of the home features the owners' bedroom and bathroom, laundry and storage, and an office accessed via the glass-filled gallery facing the front porch and courtyard.

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Upon entering the foyer, views of the lagoon are clearly visible through oversized sliders and screened porch beyond. The high windows above the screened porch flood the great room with natural daylight. The clients worked closely with Shelley Wilkins of S. Wilkins Interior Design through the entire construction period to make sure all of the selections were complementary throughout the house.

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The screened porch spans nearly the entire rear of the house. Custom-detailed exposed rafters in the ceiling provide an interesting rhythm for your eye to follow from one end of the porch to the other.

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The owners' wing also has its own open-air porch immediately outside the bedroom. A full wall of glass, with custom angled windows above, maximize views of the backyard and lagoon.

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The gallery outside the owners' bedroom and office features uninterrupted views of the outdoors. Operable hopper windows below allow for natural breezes to naturally cool the house during the warmer months.

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High southern-facing windows in the owners' bedroom mean natural daylight is abundant throughout the day. Hidden roll-down shades above the larger windows allow for blackout curtains to block that daylight while sleeping in on the weekends.

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Even one of the most private rooms in the house, the owners' bathroom, is flooded with daylight and views of the outdoors. Large plantings and bushes maintain privacy from remote neighbors' lots.

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The owners' home office occupies the front corner of the house. With a full corner of glass, pecky cypress ceiling, and dark green wallpaper, the office feels more a part of the surrounding nature than the building in which it resides.

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The guest suite above the garage, currently being used as an entertainment space, also features corner windows and a feeling of living amongst the tree canopy. Bright painted wood ceilings reflect light throughout the entire room.

- Designed by Pearce Scott Architects - Pearce Scott, Allison Bonner, and Evan Goodwin

- Landscape Design by Witmer, Jones, Keefer

- Built by Richard Best Custom Homes

- Photography by Richard Leo Johnson

- Interior Design & Selections by S. Wilkins Interior Design

- Landscape Selection & Installation by Andy Barger Landscaping