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Shaggin’ Chalet in Gatlinburg, Tennessee — “a vintage retreat as cozy as grandpa’s mountain lodge”

‘Man vintage mid-century Bavarian gothic’

swiss chalet

furnish me vintage mr and mrs
Jackie and Todd, Mr. and Mrs. Furnish Me Vintage

Jackie and Todd, owners of Furnish Me Vintage in St. Petersburg, Florida, are golly maybe my most favorite people in the world. I visited their store last year. This mid mod power couple has gone and done something absolutely fabulous again: They purchased a time capsule A-frame chalet in Gatlinburg, Tennessee… spiffed it up… decorated with fab finds … and now have the place available for rental. It’s retro… it’s cheeky… it’s sexy… hubba, it’s: The Shaggin’ Chalet. The Shaggin’ Chalet’s website is officially launching today — and we get the exclusive!

shaggin chalet logoI asked Jackie — Mrs. Furnish Me Vintage (FMV) — for a few tidbits on the whyfore and such.

She told us:

The why:

Our house hunt started as a mission to find a second home to flee the Florida heat. We stumbled upon Gatlinburg. Turns out this place is Tut’s tomb of MCM vacation homes. Downtown looks like a 1960s Alpine village — charming as the day is long. Realized this was the perfect opportunity to create the vacation home of our retro-loving dreams. We wanted to whip up a vintage retreat that felt as cozy as grandpa’s mountain lodge. A place where Elvis would go to escape the Graceland doldrums.

Design inspiration:

It’s a chalet atop a mountain in a forest. Our goal was to make it feel like a time capsule family vacation home. Mr. FMV loves mid-century Bavarian gothic. Not sure if that is a legitimate genre or if he made it up. It’s the stuff you might find in a 1950s/ 1960s dad’s rec room. Knotty pine, conquistador paintings, Witco wall art, cypress clocks, Syroco plaques with knights and torches. Man vintage. We became obsessed with finding retro rustic pieces for the cabin. I never knew I would develop such an admiration for Bob Ross knock-off landscapes. Nearly all the furniture, paintings and accessories came from our store. In fact, a few curtains were made from left-over upholstery fabric from furniture restorations.  We took the haul up in two separate trips, 12 hours each way in a U-Haul.  It was tough designing from a distance (Florida to Tennessee). We met only once with our contractor to get him on course and came back a month later to work side by side on the finishing touches. We think it worked out, but the renters will be the judge.

The cool thing about man cave 1970s decor — it’s not widely trendy (yet) and there was a lot of it, so you can get great deals… and, it packs a heckuva design wallop. You can see some of Jackie and Todd’s before-and-after decorating photos here.

I showed my husband — who I guess I should now call Mr. RR — and heck yeah, he wants to sign right up for a week or two in this giant retro man cave. Take a look:

1970s-living-roomretro chalet

clean paneling

Did Jackie and Todd use this? No, she said:

The can was full but we couldn’t get it to spray out. Sadly were unable to test.
Side of the bottle said 1968.
I did save the can. It’s in our owners closet. Maybe we can McGiver it into spraying again on our next trip.

P.S., though, Mrs. FMV: This old stuff, with its mystery ingredients, skares me. Especially if you have any inklings to reproduce in the future.

1970s-kitchen

chalet kitchen

I asked Jackie about the kitchen floors. She said:

There was a beige commercial carpet on the kitchen floor.
We ripped this up to prep for the parquet tile application.
Funky original flower pattern carpet was then unveiled.It had some unforgivable stains so we were unable to salvage it.
The easy to clean, non-flammable parquet tile seemed more practical for a kitchen anyhow. [It’s Armstrong peel-and-stick, straight from the Home Depot.]
It helped create a more retro feel than the previous beige carpet.
Also helped bring out the green-tint to the pickled finish on the kitchen cabinets.

vintage frigidaire range

yellow bedroomfooseball tablefoosballFoosball! I was recently on a family vacation — played some foosball just like this with my nephews. It was incredible fun. THE KIDS LOVED IT. It got them right off their galldarned video games! How to get your kids offffff the video games: Get a real foosball table!

mt leconte

bearThis place is so sweet that there may be occasional, uninvited guests…

RC and Veronica Mears, fauxriginal owners

robert and veronica mearsJackie also told me about the fauxriginal (I made that word up, do you like it?) owners of the Shaggin’ Chalet. That is, they are fabricated people.

Mrs. FMV wrote me this poem-like email:

Did you see the section, “Meet the Mears?”
Those are fictional previous owners of the cabin.
It all started with a Cypress clock we found.
The clock had the name “Mears” and a Free Masons compass logo.
We knew we wanted it for the cabin so we figured we’d have to work that into a story some how.
Then about a week later we bought the female portrait from one of our suppliers.
Bingo! This was going to be Mrs. Veronica Mears, matron of the chalet.
Somehow Todd knew that as soon as he saw the painting.
We decide we would hang up the portrait in the cabin with a fictional bio framed beside.

Bought the cabin, did some work.
Driving home, picking along the way.
Stop in Central Florida. Digging through a nasty heap.
We find the portrait of the Marco Rubio looking gent.
Voila! We have our Mr. Mears. Brought him up to the cabin on the next trip.

I fabricated the bios based on some of the local history, features and attractions.
The name of the play that made Mr. Mears famous is “Granny’s Cookin Coon Soup — The Musical.”
Funny to anyone who pays attention as their driving the main strip of nearby Pigeon Forge (main route into Gatlinburg from the South or West).
There’s a silly sign in front of the Hatfield McCoy dinner show that incessantly flashes the phrase “Hungry? Granny’s Cookin!”
Hatfield McCoy dinner show is one of the top dinner theatre attractions in Pigeon Forge.

You two just crack me up. Thank you, Jackie and Todd, for letting us share your joyful decorating. Good luck with the chalet!

Link love:

  1. Sean says:

    Awesome 60’s house! I love the stools in the kitchen with the slanted counter. Love the orange and paneling too.

  2. Jennifer Dyer says:

    What a great couple and what a great place!!! Todd and Jackie have outdone themselves on this chalet. I had the pleasure of seeing it before the transformation and you just cant truly appreciate it without seeing it for yourself so if you are ever looking for a place to get away from “it all” this is the place…the views of Mt. LeConte are breathtaking – and living here in Pigeon Forge/Gatlinburg I see a lot of these views each day…my family and I are honored to call Todd and Jackie our friends and we can’t wait for them to visit…GREAT JOB GUYS-it looks awesome!!!

  3. Cheryl says:

    Love this! Our vintage cabin in the mountains has some of the same vintage features, including the stove, except ours is pale yellow! Does anyone know where I could get a new thermostat for it?

  4. Kelly Wittenauer says:

    Very cool! Remember seeing another MCM house from the tram in Gatlinburg who’s roof was made from an airplane wing. It was a vacation retreat for airline execs, if I remember correctly.

    When in Gatlinburg, check out The Arrowmont School of Arts & Crafts. The entrance is nearly across from the aquarium. There’s a nice retail shop on the main road, but be sure to visit the actual school – where visitors are welcomed into the studios teaching everything from woodworking and quilting to photography and glassworking.

  5. Amy Patterson says:

    Living in St. Pete, Central Avenue is the first place I take out of town visitors once they tire of the beach. Furnish Me Vintage is by far the highlight of the tour. Not just they drool-worthy furniture, but Jackie herself is so nice and engaging. She once spent 20 minutes talking to my NYC design school daughter about art, design and life in The Big Apple. Every few months I stop in to ogle the goods and without fail Jackie asks about my daughter.Such an awesome person with an awesome shop in an awesome town! But sometimes I wish I never ventured into Furnish Me Vintage for after buying a MCM credenza there, I want to Craigslist all my traditional furniture and replace it with treasures from her store. One can dream.

  6. Marie says:

    OMG, I have this exact same green stove in my house! Love it. Have a lot of original 1967 features in my home; you’re going to have to help me when I get ready for some re-do.

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