Kathryn Long Wins Two (More) Design Excellence Awards!

Kathryn with Margot Olson, ASID, immediate past president of CCASID

From the recent Gala Awards Presentation for the Carolinas Chapter, ASID, Kathryn Long, ASID, brought home first-place and honorable mention awards. The top prize was for the new Tupelo Honey Café on Hendersonville Road, and the honorable mention was for adaptive reuse of 189 East Chestnut Street, Ambiance’s new home. We are proud of this—competition for these awards is keen, as top designers from North and South Carolina—Charlotte, Raleigh, Charleston, Hilton Head, etc.—enter their best work. Some years over a hundred projects are entered. Rules are strict and rigorous; judges come from outside the chapter. It’s a big deal.

"I'm really proud of both awards," says Kathryn, "but the most fun moment was, after seeing photos of the runners-up in the hospitality division, which were beautiful projects, photos of Tupelo Honey were flashed on the screen. I was really thrilled to win against such stiff competition."

How do you decide which projects to enter?

Sometimes I know from the beginning, when meeting with clients, that they and the team involved are such a good fit that the result will be outstanding.


So the team approach is often important?

Absolutely! A credit sheet accompanies every award entry form. For example, the Tupelo Honey project could not have happened without Glazer Architecture and Doug Stratto as lighting consultant. And restoring the wonderful old home for our offices and design studio was very much a team effort. You don’t restore a building by yourself!


How many of these awards have you won?

Eleven, starting in 1992. In several years, including 2009, I have won multiple awards.

Kathryn at the 2009 Gala at Wrightsville Beach


What were your winning entries in 2009?

First place for Vacation Home was the Mountain Air residence of Tom and Toni Oreck and their family.

This was a real team effort, with Platt Architecture, Wildwood Studios as the cabinetbuilders, Lyna Farkas as the decorative painter. There were many craftspeople and artisans involved, as were the clients, who fulfilled many dreams with the project.
For the full story of this project as published in Carolina Home and Garden, click here to see the article.

What was the other 2009 award winner?

The renovation of a den in North Asheville, in the “single space” category. This is the most difficult slot in which to win because there are so many entries.

Jim Samsel was the architect. This beautiful den is full of details. The room's size and number of windows presented many challenges.

The clients, Bob and Kim Wiggins, had a definite vision, which made the design process go smoothly.


Why does this matter—all of these design awards—to the consumer?

It means it costs no more to approach an interior design problem with the best available designer. In the long run, creating designs with lasting quality is the BEST VALUE.
Those of you who are receiving this newsletter know how good we are at Project Management. That, combined with the highest quality interior design, means there is no reason to reach outside Asheville for the best. Be sure your neighbors and friends know about Ambiance Interiors. Ask them to visit at ambianceasheville.com.

If you are an architect or contractor whose client is looking for a designer as part of the team to plan their dream home or renovation, forward this newsletter to them. You can rest assured you are recommending the very best. Only two other CCASID designers have received more design awards than Kathryn—one is retired in Charlotte, the other has multiple offices in the two Carolinas.


Any parting words?

I want to thank my clients, who have made it possible to create such outstanding environments to be submitted.

And also the various teams of architects, contractors, consultants, and photographers. Without them this could not happen. I should also mention the teams who have helped “style” for the photos.

It is such a privilege to work in such a rich environment as Ambiance Interiors, in such a great town as Asheville, and in such a beautiful area as Western North Carolina. I have lots to be thankful for!

If you haven’t yet experienced Tupelo Honey Café’s south location, make a reservation and enjoy both the food and what the judges described: “the use of warm yellow palette and lighting make the space sparkle.” If you missed the story of the Tupelo Honey design, click here.

P.S. “Stay tuned”: the next newsletter is about “before” and “after” photos of some amazing spaces designed by both Kathryn and Linda Constable.

Wayne Caldwell, our Finance Department and best-selling author, can now also be called “prize-winning novelist.
Requiem by Fire
, his second novel, has won the 2010 Thomas Wolfe Memorial Literary Award, given by the WNC Historical Association for the year's most important work having to do with the region.
The first award was given in 1955, to Wilma Dykeman. Over the years such authors as Gail Godwin, Ron Rash, Charles Frazier, Lee Smith, and John Parris have won the award, so Wayne is in distinguished company.
He is fond of saying he will sign every copy you care to buy, so pick up a hardback while they’re still available. (Cataloochee, his first, sold out two hardcover printings.)
Call before you come, as he spends a fair amount of time promoting the book. Great holiday gift!

book cover

Read more about the book, or order a copy from Wayne's website waynecaldwell.com.