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A Preview of Spaces 21, 22 & 23 at the 2012 DC Design House | Arts & Culture

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A Preview of Spaces 21, 22 & 23 at the 2012 DC Design House
A Preview of Spaces 21, 22 & 23 at the 2012 DC Design House

This is the Eighth of an Eight-Part Feature on the designers’ vision and progress at the DC Design House, which is now open through May 13th. The DC Design House benefits Children's National Medical Center.

Victoria Sanchez of Victoria Sanchez Interiors in Alexandria, VA, www.victoriasanchezinteriors.com, was inspired by her own children for the design of Space 21, the Teenager’s Getaway. “I looked to their likes and dislikes, and their wants and desires as I created this design,” says Sanchez, who is excited to part of the Design House but also knows the amount of work that had to be completed in a short period of time.

She chose a lively, colorful design scheme with Missoni fabrics, some Mid-Century modern furnishings as well as accessories from the Missoni store in New York. “This room is designed to be the perfect hangout for teenagers and will reflect the energy teenagers create,” Sanchez says. While the space also presented some challenges with its odd angles and corners, Sanchez found the right options for furniture placement, including where to put the desk for finishing homework.

Space 22, the Guest Bath by Brian Van Fleet of BVF Design Consulting in Washington, DC, www.bvfdesignconsulting.com, has a great foundation, the designer says. “I’m taking what’s good about it, cleaning up the lines, and adding texture and interest with a beautiful, simple palette.” The designer says this is what’s needed to take this dated space and bring it forward.

“My design philosophy is one of clean lines and warmth of materials,” Van Fleet adds, including layering of colors, textures and patterns in the right balance. Some of the Guest Bath’s original elements just needed to be refreshed, such as the mirrors and vintage fixtures. Van Fleet enhanced the space with art hanging from chains, rich textured walls in the bath area, and a skirted sink and niche (not shown).

For this designer, being part of the DC Design House has special meaning; he was treated at Children’s Hospital in Baltimore when he was young and overcame a birth defect due to the diligence of the hospital. “I was 8 at the time,” Van Fleet says. “The staff at Children’s could not have been kinder, taking care of a very frightened little kid.” While Van Fleet knows Children’s Hospital in Baltimore is not connected to Children’s National Medical Center, their goals are the same. “I’ve always wanted to give back to them, and being a part of the DC Design House gives me that opportunity,” he says.

Christopher Boutlier of Boutlier Design in Washington, DC, www.boutlier.com, was selected to design Space 23, the Back Hallway. Originally not a Design House space, Boutlier saw the hallway’s potential. “What a great place to hang art,” he thought, so he approached the DC Design House committee about designing the hallway that connects the kitchen and back stairs with the main foyer.

“Creating a neutral background to display beautiful art in an unusual location seemed like an interesting undertaking,” Boutlier adds. While he knows there’s a risk in designing something so simple, he likes the idea that it’s a hidden gem in the house that will hopefully make people smile when they walk through it. “If I accomplish that, I’ll be satisfied.” Art by Lisa Tureson and an antique mirror from And Beige enliven the pass-through space.

Boutlier says that being a part of the DC Design House has special meaning: “It’s about having the opportunity to be an active participant in one of the great traditions within the field of interior design.” He adds that the Design House affords both spectators and participants an insider view into the world of interior design that you can’t get anywhere else. “Everyone, from the designers who develop the vision to the artisans and crafts people who give it form, and the journalists who record and share it, we are all here out of love for the field of design and our community.”

The DC Design House at 4951 Rockwood Parkway NW in Spring Valley is open until May 13th. Hours are Saturday-Sunday Noon-5 p.m. and Tuesday-Friday 10 a.m.-3 p.m.

For more information about the 2012 DC Design House including volunteer opportunities, go to www.dcdesignhouse.com and follow www.facebook.com/DCDesignHouse.

Before and After photos by Robert Radifera.