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I had the pleasure of getting to work with M & S early on in my stonework career. S was an architect and new to Western North Carolina. The couple had bought a home that also had a small cottage on the property, which they wanted to remodel. Some of the first work that was done was on the grounds, outside of it. The cottage is located on a steep hill site with little access for bringing in heavy materials. The first contractor they hired, dismantled the old retaining walls, but did not complete the project … and frankly, made a mess.

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Together, we created a design to install a large, dry-stack retaining wall with a number of graceful curves. We chose to work with the local Fines Creek, Doggett Mountain stone partly because of its size and availability.



This project is when I fully realized how much I really enjoy putting curves in the landscape. We continued to make other additions to the grounds around the cottage, including a large water feature, steps, a pond, a bridge over the water (built by a carpenter), and walkways.

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All of the changes we designed together, and that I implemented, made this cottage a very charming and desirable weekend rental. And because I like to work closely with a client, checking in often, I feel I helped to re-establish their trust in working with others, which is very important to me.

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