Best Performance 2018

Contractor: Bluestone Construction

Architect: Shamburger Architectural Group
Interior Designer: Kathryn Greeley
Photographers: Melissa Lind, David Dietrich and Carl Amoth
Story Author: Carolina Home and Gardens, July 2018 issue

Bearwallow Mountain Rustic Luxury Home

With real elevation comes real responsibilities, so when Kevin Reed, owner of BlueStone Construction, carved out a dream home for Kirk and Minette Johnson on Bearwallow Mountain, he was glad of every chance to log a dry day on the books. The lush Grand Highlands community straddles the Buncombe/Henderson county line at 4,000 feet. The main challenge, always, was “weather, weather, weather,” Reed says.

“There was lots of wind,” he adds. “All the time.” In the winter — and all year round, really — it’s way chillier on the ridgeline than down in town. Luckily, sunny days held firm during some of the construction’s trickier aspects. Master carpenters accomplished the timber framing “with lots of skill and a little bit of brute force,” says Reed. “We had beautiful weather during that time, which was fortunate … the pieces fit together very well.”

The same is true for the vast package of structural and ornamental salvaged wood used inside the 5,649-square-foot home, sourced from Appalachian Antique Hardwoods in Waynesville. “It takes a long time to make matching dovetail cuts, especially in such hard wood,” notes Reed. “ [The carpenters] used a variety of tools, from chainsaws to chisels, circular saws, belt sanders, even files.”

Big-ticket amenities included an in-home elevator and what Reed calls a “killer workshop with an in-floor dust-collection system.” Minette is ultra sensitive to chemicals, so any airborne allergens — rife in most building materials and finishing processes — had to be eliminated wherever possible.

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