Photo: Joann Seiburg Baker

This gawker-worthy farmhouse owes its beauty to a bright green color palette, a colorful front yard, and a charmingly simple design. 

Zo? Gowen

Architect Sam Greeson of Meyer Greeson Paullin Benson;

Spotted in Blowing Rock, North Carolina

Year Built 1998

Size 5,000 square feet

Why We Love It
Sited on a sleepy mountain road, this home has a vibrant color palette, a kaleidoscopic front garden, and all-American good looks that make you wish you were pulling into the circular front drive. It's also hard to fight the feeling that this could be the home of the famous pitchfork-holding duo of the American Gothic painting—if only they had lived in the South. 

What Makes It Work 
Graphic lines and a bold color scheme keep the Gothic Revival-style exterior from getting lost behind the blooming front yard. Simple building materials such as board-and-batten siding, a cedar shake roof, plank shutters, and two-over-two windows give the home a low-key, cottagey feel that's in keeping with the mountain locale.

The Wow Factor
That bright green color! Taking cues from Mother Nature's favorite neutral (and to best complement the flower-filled yard), Sam painted the siding a bold green and the shutters a deeper, nearly black green. Then he used crisp white paint to highlight the trim and Victorian-inspired millwork.

Only In The South
A low-pitched, copper-roofed porch softens the home's facade and gives it a farmhouse feel. At 30 feet wide by 10 feet deep, it's spacious enough for a gathering to sit and visit.

The Little Details
To mix up the look, a graphic diamond pattern was used in two spots—the second-story center window and the lattice woodwork on the porch—to add just enough charm without compromising its overall simplicity.

Love it? Get it!
 Splurge on a statement-making window. (It only takes one!) A-Series casement window with Diamond Grille, from $500;
Bracket: Embellish existing porch columns with new gingerbread-style trim. Decorative Bracket (BR 141), from $16;
Climbing Rose: Welcome guests with rambling roses around the front entry. 'New Dawn,' $18.95 each;
Roof Shakes: Swap asphalt shingles for thickly textured cedar that ages well. #1 Medium Hand-Split Treated Cedar, from $2.59/sq. ft., available through Cole-Hall Lumber Company; 205/663-2900

While scouting the South, we often slam on the brakes when we spy picturesque homes like this. Have a brake-worthy home in your neighborhood? Send it to us at

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