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A Preview of Spaces 1, 2 & 3 at the 2012 DC Design House | Arts & Culture

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A Preview of Spaces 1, 2 & 3 at the 2012 DC Design House
A Preview of Spaces 1, 2 & 3 at the 2012 DC Design House

This is the First of an Eight-Part Feature on the designers' vision and progress at the DC Design House, which is underway and set to open on April 14th.

Blake Dunlevy and Gina Benincasa of D&A Dunlevy Landscapers, Inc. in Barnesville, MD, www.dadunlevy.com, are the designers for the outside front entryway of this year's DC Design House. "We are so pleased to have been selected as a participant in this year's DC Design House," says Dunlevy. "The cause is great, the space is great! We could not be happier to lend our time and talents to this endeavor." Tackling Space 1, the outside front entry, Dunlevy and Benincasa are paying special attending to site context. "The design of our space lends to that of the greater home and property as a whole, but also extends beyond that, blending into the surrounding Spring Valley neighborhood and at large the nation's capital," Dunlevy adds. 

"Generally speaking, our design philosophy is based on the clean and simple schemes for the big picture, while paying close attention to the details for quality craftsmanship," Benincasa says. This is true for all outdoor rooms - large or small, formal or casual - when D&A Dunlevy creates outdoor rooms. Selection of materials is a key factor as well, whether they use stone or brick, specific plant varieties, and various light fixtures.

Once you step inside the home at 4951 Rockwood Parkway, NW, Matthew Moore's Space 2, the foyer and staircase, comes into full view. "After 20 years in the business primarily as an artist, I'm excited for this to be the first time the general public will see more of what I'm about," says Moore of John Matthew Moore Fine Art in McLean, VA, www.johnmatthewmoore.com. Moore has always had a passion for creating spaces that usually take shape starting with one of his works of art. "After opening my showroom three years ago, I've been slowing implementing my ideas and plans for designing spaces, fabrics, furniture, china and lighting.

For the foyer, Moore's design philosophy is clean, classic spaces. "My favorite period in design is the late '50s and '60s... the time when design came into its own," Moore adds. "I've chosen this style for the entrance and reception hall of this year's Design House due to the house being built in that period." Moore says his sophisticated design would work then and now.

Just past the reception hall is Space 3, the parlor, designed by Annette Hannon of Annette Hannon Interior Design in Burke, VA, www.annettehannon.com. "I'm thrilled and honored, and truth be told,  a bit nervous," about being selected to participate in this year's DC Design House, says Hannon. "The DC Design House has become such a premier showhouse for the area with a talented field of designers vying for limited spaces."

Hannon enjoys participating in showrooms because of the freedom it allows her. "For each house I've had the opportunity to engage in, I've gotten to conjure up an imaginary client and then design according to his or her needs and desires," she says. "It's a bit like celebrating one's birthday and getting to create a perfect party."

Space 3, the parlor, is a square room with little architectural interest, Hannon notes, so her goal is to create a comfortable, luxurious space that someone would want to linger in long after the party's over. "It was essential to add layers of interest in the room," she adds, by starting with the ceiling and working her way down. "It also meant designing a built-in cabinet to replace a wet bar closet." Hannon will be incorporating custom and vintage pieces as well as Internet buys and select artwork. "No client wants cookie cutter design, especially my imaginary ones," she says.

In the Second of the Eight-Part Feature, Spaces 4, 5 and 6 will be highlighted.

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