The Summer House is a testament to Paula and Barry Jones’ life principles “leap and the net will appear”.

The seed of this unique enterprise was planted 20 years ago when the couple went on a hike in the north Georgia Mountains. The discovery of an abandoned cabin and its bentwood willow furniture caught the couple's fancy.

Paula thought, “we could make that furniture.” “But we had no idea how to begin,” Their research resulted in finding very little written about mountain crafts and nothing about rustic handcrafted  “twig” furniture. Barry, a writer from the North Carolina/North Georgia area contemplated that a book, a step beyond the Foxfire series might be well received.

A period of investigation followed with a study of the few remaining examples of the early 1900's crafts found at Lake Rabun Hotel in Clayton, GA and High Hampton Inn in Cashiers, NC. The Jones' went to Lake Placid, New York and attended workshops at the Adirondack Museum. Tracking down the few local artisans proved more difficult. (That's another chapter to be written!).

“We certainly didn't plan to be in the furniture business but every turn led us down that path.” Early pieces made in Barry's barn in Tiger, Georgia caught the interest of the director of The Bascom gallery in Highlands, NC. A gallery showing resulted in a commission to work with the Chattooga Club in Cashiers, producing the chairs and tables for the Pavilion. “That show gave us the confidence to proceed with our work and develop the idea of rustic furniture for interior design. We knew that mixing rustic furniture and accessories with Arts and Crafts furniture from the same period would be a perfect look for a mountain house.” So, after almost 100 years “rustic” returned to the mountains.

This new style proved successful in the Highlands-Cashiers area. Next, with the help and encouragement of Paula's friends in the design business, an item was featured in House Beautiful. The feature caught the attention of the decorators of George Lucas’ Skywalker Ranch and Robert Redford’s Sundance Lodge who both commissioned rustic pieces for their respective projects.

With these designs now being produced, Tiger Mountain Woodworks was born and the designs were soon finding their way into stylish homes across the country and exclusive decorator magazine.

The first Summer House shop evolved from a small storefront in Scaly Mountain, NC to its present sprawling location in an old apple tree orchard just outside the town of Highlands, NC. The Summer House and Tiger Mountain Woodworks act as a complete home-furnishing complex inclusive with a design showroom, kitchen shop, and porch and patio store. “We want you to feel so comfortable that it's like coming home to friends,” says Paula.

For more information on the Jones’ and The Summer House, call 828-526-5577 or, better yet, visit Paula and Barry at 2089 Dillard Road in Highlands, NC. Open Year Round Monday to Sunday – May through November and Monday to Saturday – December through April.