Bare Bones—And Great Views—at the DC Design House

It’s that time of year again! Show house season. Here is the nearly $15 million house on Foxhall Road that will be the site of the DC Design House:

A rainy Feb. day. I'm sure this spring it will be much more verdant when the leaves come in.

A rainy Feb. day. I’m sure this spring it will be much more verdant when the leaves come in.

The organizers opened the house on Saturday for the Bare Bones Tour, and boy was it ever: white walls and trim everywhere. Designers are thrilled this year, because the don’t have to do any demo or major improvements just to have a usable space. It’s all a brand new blank slate, brought to us by GTM Architects.

Here’s an idea of how expansive, and empty, it is:

kitchen

GTM claimed the prize space — the kitchen — to display their own talents. It will look a lot different when the show house opens in April.

One of the main organizers, designer Taylor Wells, was on hand. He took the opportunity on this cold February day to talk about how much time he’s spending in Florida in the winter, while he summers on the water in Lewes, Del. Taylor, I love you, but I kind of hate you, too.

Here he is, talking about his Florida plans (but he smiles all the time anyway!).

Here he is, talking about his Florida plans (but he smiles all the time anyway!).

Most of the designers were on hand last weekend, showing off their plans for the room they were assigned. There’s 25 designers, and they’re not even claiming all the rooms in this five-level house! Here’s a peek (just a peek) of what some of them have sketched out for their spaces:

Show house veteran Camille Saum got a plum assignment -- the living room.

Show house veteran Camille Saum got a plum assignment — the living room.

 

nestor

Nestor Santa Cruz — another show house veteran, is planning a chic dining room.

 

My Arlington neighbor, Andrea Houck, is outfitting the bar and hallway between the dining room and kitchen.

My Arlington neighbor, Andrea Houck, is outfitting the bar and hallway between the dining room and kitchen.

 

Dressed to match her design (I love how she does that!) Iantha Carley stands in the "morning room." Don't you all wish you had one of those?

Dressed to match her design (I love how she does that!) Iantha Carley stands in the “morning room.” Don’t you all wish you had one of those?

 

Victoria Neale stands in an important space -- the family room. I love her elegant-yet-easy fabrics and furnishings that she lined up here.

Victoria Neale stands in an important space — the family room. I love the elegant-yet-easy fabrics and furnishings that she lined up here.

 

Lorna Gross gets the downstairs lounge, and her chic, organic-modern design is just as jaunty as her cap!

Lorna Gross gets the downstairs lounge, and her chic, organic-modern design is just as jaunty as her cap!

 

Scott Cooke, who did a magnificent job last year with the central living room of the Design Center DreamHome, takes the lower-level dining room and kitchen of this house (because we all should have dining and cooking options, both upstairs and downstairs, right??). Scott invokes classical lines and traditional colors, with a huge appearance by a stone Buddha. A nice way to chill!

Scott Cooke, who did a magnificent job last year with the central living room of the Design Center DreamHome, takes the lower-level dining room and kitchen of this house (because we all should have dining and cooking options, both upstairs and downstairs, right??). Scott invokes classical lines and traditional colors, with a huge appearance by a stone Buddha. A nice way to chill!

 

Ken Berry and Jen Chappell of AmericanEye at the Washington Design Center stand on the terrace they'll be decorating, which just just outside Lorna and Scott's spaces. Nice to see old friends from the design center!

Ken Berry and Jen Chappell of AmericanEye at the Washington Design Center stand on the terrace they’ll be decorating, which is just outside Lorna and Scott’s spaces. Nice to see old friends from the design center!

 

Here's the rendering for Ken and Jen's terrace, color-coordinated with Lorna and Scott's spaces, no less!

Here’s the rendering for Ken and Jen’s terrace.

 

Movin' on UP, to the master bedroom, Richmond designer Susan Jamieson is in charge of the master bedroom. I am particularly excited to see these rich patterns, color and texture come to life here.

Movin’ on UP, Richmond designer Susan Jamieson is in charge of the master bedroom. I am particularly excited to see the I-Dream-of-Jeannie FABULOUS vintage light fixtures.

 

I was SO excited to see Michael Hampton back in town -- he's spend a lot of time in Santa Fe, but is coming back more frequently for clients here. And you can see why, from a glimpse at how he'll decorate the upstairs sitting room.

I was SO excited to see Michael Hampton back in town — he’s spent a lot of time in Santa Fe in the past couple years, but is coming back more frequently for clients here. And you can see why, from a glimpse at how he’ll decorate the upstairs sitting room.

Upstairs from the first upstairs (no that’s not a typo) is the upper, upper level, where there will be an amazing media room by one of my best designer friends, Jeff Akseizer of ADG Design Group. The man is so busy, though, that of course, he wasn’t there. But Katherine Vernot-Jonas was, in the small guest room, where she is planning a suite that takes inspiration from Yves Delorme bedding. I’m always so excited to learn about new designers (new to me, anyway), when I go to these show houses.

Katherine tells me that this French bedding pattern inspired the original little black dress. How sweet!

Katherine tells me that this French bedding pattern inspired the original little black dress.

So, between studying design boards and going up and down stairs (we all got a workout), I was looking out the gaping windows, which have yet to be dressed in sumptuous fabrics. This being Foxhall Road, the views toward the neighbors last weekend were as impressive as the design boards. If you buy this house, here’s where you can go to borrow a cup of sugar:

redwhitebrick

yellowhouse

stonehouse-front

And finally, the lucky owners will get to take a bath in view of the French ambassador’s house. Ooh, la la!

frenchamb
See you all on April 14!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Comments

  1. Looking good so far! This goes to show that DC is full of interior design talent. And I’m excited to see the final reveal at the open house. Good luck to all of the designers.

  2. Thanks for the preview Jennifer – I can’t wait to see the finished house. Scott Cooke’s room looks very innovative and I too love the fabrics on Victoria’s board. Nestor, of course, is the epitome of refined taste. Love your blog. Gary

  3. Way to go Jen! It was great to see you, can’t wait to see the house all decorated up.