Design star

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When asked to submit a tree house design for Nashville’s Cheekwood Botanical Gardens, Anne Daigh thought outside of the tree. Her vision: a 30-feet-long, 15-feet-wide kid-friendly conch shell.

“We (the architects) had to design a tree house inspired by a literary work of art. I chose the conch shell from Lord of the Flies,” Daigh (BLA ’02) says.

After a couple of weeks of construction, her vision came to life and was placed next to a sandbox to tie in the theme.

“We had 1,800 people come out on opening day,” Daigh says. “The kids truly loved it, and they knew exactly what it was, which is the coolest part.”

Her work resonated through the gardens, literally.    “At the end of the conch shell there was a horn for the kids to blow,” Daigh says. “Whoever got to it first would become the leader of the tribe.”

Daigh already was a hit in Nashville, having won Best in Show at the Cheekwood Antiques & Garden show in February. Held annually, the show benefits the gardens and allows artists to show off their designs. Daigh created an ocean-themed planter box, using pink and purple for a sunset scene over the ocean, complete with specially chosen flowers and papier-mâché dolphin mobiles.