Darryl Cobb designs a masterpiece for an artist and an artisan


FeatureCobbVer3Image1Builder Roy Mahshie had the home’s exterior brackets, corbels and porch beams made locally at Fountain Timberworks. Shed dormers above the garage offer northern and southern exposure for the artist’s studio upstairs.

In style, the house defies classification, drawing on mountains, coastlines, Southern woods and Western grasslands. Its traffic-stopping front porch, in architect Darryl Cobb’s view, “is one big piece of sculpture.”

The effect was deliberate. Cobb designed the home in Daniel Island Park for a husband and wife who live surrounded by art. Ultimately, the house became the largest piece in Steve and Laurie Meyer’s collection. Learning that Cobb was once a painter tipped the scales for the Meyers, who had studied several of the nearly 60 homes he’s designed for Daniel Islanders. Likewise, Cobb says, “I’d always wanted to design a home for an artist,” and the Meyers’ need for both living and studio space gave him the chance.

“Darryl got both the physical and the metaphysical side of our ideas,” says Laurie. “He took the idea of an open floor plan and still gave us so much room to hang paintings—and create more.”

Laurie is a professional artist whose oils hang in the Hagan Fine Art Gallery in Charleston as well as in three other galleries in the Carolinas. She makes annual trips to Italy to teach plein air painting and, at home, teaches classes in her own studio.

Steve Meyer, vice president of the Burton-Meyer Group of UBS Investment Bank, is a wealth management professional and a volunteer high school football coach. What he didn’t know until the building project started is that he’s also a craftsman.

That self-discovery was sparked by a relative who owns a Revolutionary-era estate in Winnsboro and offered Steve access to a stockpile of antique wood.

About 80 square feet of walnut was earmarked for the countertop for the Meyers’ kitchen island, but there was wood left over. With Laurie’s encouragement, Steve bought $500 worth of tools and set up shop in his garage. His first piece was a large, white pine table for the back porch, followed by two walnut sink stands and a white pine table for Laurie’s studio.

With husband and wife so fully vested in the project, and with the selection of Roy Mahshie as their builder, Cobb says: “Everything fell into place. We all got to be creative.” Cobb says he enjoys the fact that you can see straight through the house, from the front door to the 16 feet of glass doors opening to the back porch. The view of the yard, the pool and the golf course beyond is unobstructed, giving the Meyers the sensation of living outdoors.

The stairwell—“one of my favorite ‘rooms’ in the house,” says Laurie—also creates openness. Behind iron balusters, floor-to-ceiling wainscoting creates gallery space with dimensional interest.

Does even a professional artist get stressed over wall paint decisions? “I did so much research on paint colors,” recalls Laurie. “Steve would leave me at the table looking at samples and come back hours later and say, ‘Have you moved?’” She finally settled on two cool-hued Sherwin-Williams shades, “Useful Gray” and “Analytical Gray,” to create a neutral backdrop for both vibrant and subtler colors. She chose “Ivory Lace” for the trim work and ceilings.

FeatureCobbVer3Image2Once the sun goes down, illuminated built-ins, sconces by Visual Comfort and a chandelier by Restoration Hardware light the dining room. Laurie’s marshscape hangs above a vintage buffet. Chairs surrounding the Hickory White table are by Lee Industries and are finished in sage velvet with matte silver nail heads.
FeatureCobbVer3Image3Lit by Edison bulbs, a greenhouse chandelier from Candelabra sets aglow the island’s antique walnut countertop in this kitchen designed by Brian Reiss of Distinctive Design. Madre of Pearl from Charleston’s MVP Granite covers the remaining counters. Beyond the kitchen windows, a bluestone porch is home to Steve’s first woodworking piece—a large table, which overlooks a rectangular soaking pool. Slipcovered barstools from Verve in Columbia, S.C.
FeatureCobbVer3Image4The double-sided stacked-stone fireplace, with its mantel of reclaimed wood, introduces a mountain ambiance to the living room. Behind this wall, the same fireplace warms Steve’s Southwestern-themed study, where he watches film of Bishop England’s football team. Living room furnishings from Verve include a Vanguard chair and couch; and a coffee table of leather, chrome and wood by Michael Weiss. Fan from Ferguson.
FeatureCobbVer3Image5A colorful Charleston “roof-scape” takes shape on Laurie’s easel at the back of her roomy studio. Blackout shades from All About Windows of Charleston.
FeatureCobbVer3Image6The upstairs landing affords a view of the floor-to-ceiling wainscoting in the airy stairwell. Table from Lyndon Leigh in Mount Pleasant.
FeatureCobbVer3Image7White marble floors and quartz countertops create a dreamy master bath. A useful cupboard and tall chest separates his-and-her vanities. Sconces by Visual Comfort. Cabinetry painted “French Gray.”

The resulting airiness is grounded by the interior doors, which are painted “Enduring Bronze” and by the dark floors, which are a mixture of 3-, 4- and 5-inch-wide planks of white oak in a fumed and oiled finish.

Upstairs, a velvet view of golf course and treetops greets the Meyers in their master bedroom, where the v-groove ceiling soars to an 18-foot vault. Cobb says the master suite came together well, noting its luxurious bathroom, a closet sectioned with built-ins, a laundry room (one of two in the home) and a separate water closet.

Laurie’s enthusiasm bubbles over when she enters her studio. Located above the three-car garage, it, too, is a suite containing a workroom, bathroom, office and balcony. Sixteen windows provide both northern and southern exposures and are outfitted in blackout shades for maximum light control should she choose to dramatically light a model. Designed with built-in cabinets, special ventilation and a laminate floor (forgiving of drips), the studio provides Laurie ample room to work before she puts down her brush and migrates downstairs to a home where beauty has been captured on a highly livable canvas.

Margaret Locklair writes and edits books and magazine articles from her home in Berkeley County. Email:

FeatureCobbVer3Image8Open trusses span the soaring ceiling in the master bedroom. Floor covering from Palmetto Carpet and Floor Covering in Mount Pleasant. Furnishings and reverse shades from Verve.
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