We had the pleasure of touring Frank Lloyd Wright’s Auldbrass Plantation last week with the Beaufort County Open Land Trust‘s biannual tours. Some of the office had visited before, and for others of us, it was a first. It is quite impressive, both the original design, as well as the efforts undertaken by the current owner to realize Frank Lloyd Wright’s vision. Auldbrass is one of two Frank Lloyd Wright’s designs in South Carolina, the other is Broad Margin in Greenville, South Carolina (you can read about our visit to Broad Margin here).

Auldbrass seems to belong among the live oaks and spanish moss. Though it is a sprawling estate, the buildings are unassuming and quiet in a way that pays homage to the peacefulness of the cypress lake by which it sits. All the exterior walls slope to mirror the angles of the surrounding oaks. Many of the details are typical of Wright’s designs, such as his signature color, Taliesin red, and the hexagonal motifs throughout the property. Others are unique to Auldbrass and reflect the specific site, such as the copper downspouts designed to represent the spanish moss. The Auldbrass ‘logo’ is a design that is derived from the Yemassee Indians of the area. The form is common for our area; one room thick to encourage daylighting and ventilation with high ceilings to allow the heat to rise. The kitchen was originally located in a separate building from the sleeping and living areas, which is historically typical in our area, both to contain heat from cooking and lessen the impact of a potential kitchen fire. The house was retrofitted with cooling capabilities, but it would have been fairly comfortable without, even with our hot, humid summers. The concrete floors were originally heated, a feature that is no longer used today.

In addition to the main house, the grounds have extensive gardens, a swimming pool, stables, barns, a guest bedroom building, and various cottages. The owner has plans to build a two story guest house and a canal from the pool to the lake with a dinner barge.


Much of the furniture throughout the house was designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. The cars belonged to a fleet of Taliesin red cars that were customized to his specifications.

Construction Update

Saint Simons Island House

Exterior under construction

We always love seeing our designs come to life. It is fun to go back to preliminary design drawings and compare to construction photos. Some houses go through many iterations of preliminary design before the owners are completely satisfied. This one is not much different than the first sketches drawn.

St Simons House

tile tub

Tile installation is in progress. The tile on the right, in the master shower, is by Alyse Edwards, its part of the “Wanderlust” Collection, see more here.

Maple interior trim is nearly complete (click above photos to enlarge)

We are excited to see this project coming together. It is about 70% complete.

Fripp Island

Piers, Fripp Island

On Fripp Island, foundation work is underway. The footings are poured and the CMU piers are going up. A retaining wall of piles is installed. See the preliminary design for this house on the boards here.

Under Construction
Retaining wall
Beach front, Fripp Island

It is a treat getting to go to the beach for site visits!

Long Cove Club Renovation

Our major renovation in Long Cove Club, on Hilton Head Island is very close to completion. We love happy clients, and these clients are thrilled with how their house has been renovated to suit their family’s lifestyle and design preferences.

Hilton Head Island Renovation
Back porch
Pool Broad Creek View

The outdoor living on the rear of the house and the pool, with views over Broad Creek are pretty spectacular!

We will have more houses under construction to show you soon!

Dining room to kitchen, Beaufort SC renovation

Thomas Rhodes House wins AIA SC Honor Award

Frederick + Frederick Architects was recognized with the 2019 Honor Award from the South Carolina Chapter of the American Institute of Architects in the Historic Preservation category for the Thomas Rhodes House. To see the project, visit our portfolio page here. The project is a complete renovation of 1790's house, one of the oldest in Beaufort.

Jury Chair, Cheryl Morgan, FAIA said of the project:

“This is historic preservation done right! The fine design of the original house shines through and nothing in the plan adjustments distracts. They only make it a much more livable house.”


3D drawing lowcountry cottage

On the Boards- Lowcountry Cottage

There is something very satisfying about a compact and efficient cottage, especially here in the lowcountry where most of us would rather be outside most of the time. This little house will serve as a guest cottage with rental potential after the owners build a bigger place on their land. It's really got everything you need though, and with all those solar panels on a house that is just over 800 square feet, you can bet it'll be net-zero!

The clients on this project are interested in using hempcrete, which is a lightweight, cementitious insulating material made from the stalks of hemp plants and lime. We are still learning about hempcrete, but it seems like a wonder-product. The raw materials are renewable, it sequesters carbon, it insulates well. We are very intrigued, and will report back about the practicality of using it.

The Lowcountry cottage clients decided they wanted a little more space, including a full second bedroom rather than a loft, so here's version two. It is a dogtrot plan (our favorite vernacular form, read more here). The dogtrot space between the two buildings is unenclosed. The breezes funneling through the outdoor space will make it a lovely spot to dine, relax and watch the sunset. The butterfly roof will capture rainwater in a cistern. The collected rainwater will be utilized as gray water for irrigation, etc on the property, with an additional benefit of keeping the stormwater from running off into the marsh.

See what else is on our boards here.

Exterior Spring Island Architecture

Construction Update- Hilton Head Island, Spring Island

Long Cove Club Renovation, Hilton Head Island

Iron work by Ahern's Anvil

This custom rail is being installed in the major renovation happening in Long Cove in Hilton Head Island. Sean Ahern of Ahern's Anvil is the blacksmith. I visited his shop in Charleston a while back and was super impressed with his work. I'd recommend checking out his portfolio at to see beautiful and unique ironwork.

Here are a few more photos of the Long Cove House. It's a major renovation of an existing house, but it is going to be like a new house when we are finished, we have touched every room. The house will be updated and so much more functional after the renovation. Our clients often grapple with whether they should renovate an existing house, or tear it down and rebuild. We usually find that it is less expensive to renovate, even if the renovation is extensive. It is more sustainable, also!

Port Royal Plantation, Hilton Head Island

This house has incredible marsh views and lots of windows to capture those views. The style is clean and contemporary, but it still reflects lowcountry architectural traditions. I can't wait to see this house furnished!


Spring Island, Beaufort, SC

We've shown you this gem on Spring Island a good bit lately, it's just so pretty! We are looking forward to getting a professional photographer in, once the landscaping and final punch list items are completed. This house has about 10 kW of solar panels on the roof and a Tesla Powerwall 2 battery for back-up storage. We can't wait to find out what the power generation is like after the owners have been using it awhile. Interested in more information about rooftop solar? Check out our post here. The landscaping here is by Thomas Angell of Verdant Enterprises. We enjoy working together and have a similar mindset about keeping the site native and natural and fitting the house into the site (rather than vice-versa).

St. Simons Island, Georgia

The house on St. Simons is looking really great. This is another project that we are collaborating with Thomas Angell of Verdant Enterprises on. We just love how that giant oak camouflages the house. The maple front door and the cypress ceilings are very handsome, its so exciting to see finish materials on the house!


Cane Island House

Our latest project on the boards is a new house on Cane Island, right down the road from our office. The clients requested a light filled spaces and clean lines. They like lowcountry style, but want a more contemporary take on the tradition. The inspiration photos they shared with us featured symmetrical elevations. Because the lot is fairly tight, we couldn't achieve perfect symmetry. We chose to bring this element in with "local symmetry" instead.

These are the drawings for the Cane Island House. The site plan is where we start, then we create floor plans and elevations, along with a large pile of balled-up tracing paper in the recycling bin.

master bathroom

Master Bath renovation

Before & After

Here is a master bath renovation that we completed a couple of years ago in the Shrimp Pond house. The Shrimp Pond house is at Spring Island, South Carolina. We designed the house in the 90's, then new owners hired us for the Shrimp Pond Studio addition and for a remodel of the master bath.

See the side-by-side comparisons in this master bath renovation:


The addition of the round window in the shower and the new tile make it so much brighter and prettier.


master bath floating vanity

The floating vanity gives the space a contemporary feel. It's a cleaner aesthetic, and easier to clean too!


free standing tub

The tub area is updated by swapping the drop in tub for a free standing tub, new tile and loosing that dated brick accent wall.

Sketch to site- Spring Island

It's always really exciting to watch our designs come to life. Here are a few elevation watercolors from way back at the schematic design phase of this Spring Island house, paired with photos during construction. See the house from sketch to site!



front entry Spring Island Architecture

A unique and gracious entry, well executed by Esposito Construction.

Spring Island front entry

FoyerCustom stair, lowcountry SPring ISland Architecture

custom stair lowcountry architecureWe used "Subway Stone" from Lowountry Pavers for the foyer floor and in various hardscape applications. We love the unique shape of the pavers!
kitchen concept, lowcountry Spring Island architecture
Custom Kitchen, Spring Island South Carolina


On the boards with House in Colleton River Club

Here are preliminary design sketches of a new house in Colleton River Club in Bluffton, South Carolina. The owners requested zen-like spaces with lots of natural light and good airflow.We begin every project with an analysis of the site and a site plan. It is critical to correctly place the house to take advantage of prevailing breezes, sun angles and the views. The sun path diagram allows us to consider the sun angles at different times of the year.

Site Plan colleton river houseElevation colleton river


interior elevation


Interior View


Construction Progress April 2019

We are getting close to finishing some of our projects under close that the protective layers are being removed from the interior finishes. This is always an exciting time. Check out the construction progress in the photos below.

Spring Island

St. Simon's Island

Factory Creek

Brays Island Renovation

Factory Creek 2