Designer Emily Knotts showcases her love for fresh and modern interiors through her family's own lake house renovation. Perfectly set on a cove in Lake Wylie, the home's landscape is something out of a Nicholas Sparks' novel from it's private dirt road entrance to the waterfront view. However, the original home was in need of an overhaul, a designer's vision, and personal touch. Emily and her husband, a builder, envisioned a home to raise their children and make memories with family and friends. The renovated space is open and airy, perfect for this young family and a welcoming place to entertain guests at the lake.


Crisp Interiors

Dining Room + Entry 

Crisp Interiors

Kitchen Nook

Crisp Interiors

Home Office

Crisp Interiors

Emily is now sharing her lifelong passion for design through the launch of her interior design business, Crisp Interiors, helping others create beautiful spaces. She wants her clients' homes to be a personal reflection of them and curated in a way that mixes new and old, and in the end works for their lifestyle.

Noteworthy was fortunate enough to be invited into the lake house and sit down with Emily to learn more about her as a designer, inspiration behind Crisp Interiors, and her online shop featuring vintage Turkish rugs (yes please!).

Noteworthy: Tell us about your design background. How did you get started in interior design? 

Emily: Ever since I can remember, I've had a love for making things beautiful. Growing up, my bedroom always had an ever-changing theme. My sweet parents indulged me in some of the worst design decisions I've made to date. Then fast forward to college, one of my favorite things was designing the dorm each year. Upon graduating from Furman University in Greenville, SC, I pursued a career in fashion (again pursuing all things pretty). After becoming a mom, I began blogging and doing some "design work" (aka free consultations for friends) and renovating our home.  

Noteworthy: What inspired you to launch Crisp Interiors? 

Emily: It was really our first home renovation that inspired me to start Crisp. I started blogging to document the projects that my husband, Michael, and I poured so much of our heart and soul into. I thought the blog would just be a fun thing for our family to look back on one day. Somehow other people actually started reading it and I began getting requests for design work. It has also been fun to collaborate with my husband and his company (Knotts Builders) on selections and design decisions for some of the homes that they build. 

Noteworthy: What is your design philosophy? 

Emily: In my opinion, the most common decorating mistake is rushing a space. Take your time, find pieces you love on your journey. Collect first and then edit as you go. Natural elements and found treasures are what make your home wonderfully unique. Never feel like you must decorate one room in a week or even a month. Live in it for awhile. Be ok with the emptiness and let it come together naturally. Before you know it, your home will be filled with things you truly love and feel like are a reflection of your family.

Noteworthy: How would you describe your style? 

Emily: I adore clean lines, crisp neutrals, bright and airy spaces, tons of texture, and dashes of unexpected colors and patterns. My ultimate goal is always to design spaces that feel comfortable, inviting, and meaningful.  I find the best way to achieve this is by mixing modern with traditional, old and new pieces, and high-end treasures with thrift store finds.  This will give your home that collected over time feel. My favorite style combo is mixing traditional pieces with modern elements.  Think linen tufted sofa paired with an edgy, oversized gold fixture or a streamlined lucite coffee table. This keeps spaces feeling fresh and unexpected.  

Noteworthy: What top trends for the year are you currently loving? 


  • Abstract Art both on the walls and on textiles. 
  • All things blush. 
  • Oushak or tribal rugs. These really help give your space a unique and layered feel. 
  • Matte black for hardware, appliances, and windows.
  • And, of course gold. I don't think the gold trend is going anywhere for a while. I especially love designing kitchens with brass hardware against pure white cabinetry.

Noteworthy: What is your favorite book/magazine on design? 

Emily: Erin Gates' "Elements of Style", Suzanne Kasler's "Timeless Style", Domino Magazine, and Elle Decor

Noteworthy: Tell us about your online shop. 

Emily: For years I've dreamed of opening up a storefront. However, with two little ones at home (ages 1 and 2), I feel confident that now is not the right time. In this season, an online shop works much better. It allows me to be home with Elle and Beckham as much as I can while pursuing my dreams at the same time. For now I'm focusing solely on Vintage Turkish Oushaks. I began sourcing these gorgeous rugs for clients and ended up falling in love with way too many. In an effort not to be the crazy rug hoarder, I opened up Shop Crisp. I work with a designer in Turkey who has impeccable taste and understands the carefully curated look that I'm going for. I have one rule. If it wouldn't work in my house, I don't buy it. This helps me stay focused on my specific airy style. I still get giddy unwrapping and photographing each rug when they arrive. They are all so unique and have such a rich history behind them. Some go to clients, some I list online, and a few special ones find their way into our home to stay.

Emily Knotts

Emily Knotts lives with her husband and two children in Charlotte, North Carolina. Emily is the owner of Crisp Interiors and enjoys designing spaces that are both comfortable and chic. She believes each person has a unique and beautiful style all their own and is passionate about helping them find that. Emily loves to create beauty in clients and friends' homes that can be enjoyed, experienced, and remembered for many years to come. Emily's favorite days are spent reading quietly in the morning, scouring favorite shops for treasures, and relaxing on the deck with family and friends in the evening under the stars. 

Images by Candice Lanning,