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Tips For Adding Local Flair To Your Home From A Washington DC Designer

February 12, 2013 8:00 AM

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(credit: Thinkstock)

(credit: Thinkstock)

(credit: Thinkstock)

(credit: Thinkstock)

Spicing up your home’s interior takes a great deal of thought and consideration. With an abundance of information in magazines and on the internet, decorating can be overwhelming. It’s difficult to even decide on a decor or theme! To give us some guidance, two of DC’s most talented interior designers provide their to guide you through the decorating process–and even bring in some local Washington DC flair. Liz Levin of Liz Levin Interiors and Zoe Feldman of Zoe Feldman Design, Inc. share insight into a modern day DC.

Related: Best Home Decor Stores In DC

Modernize, But Keep A Bit Of DC Formality

“The biggest trend that I have noticed since starting my business eight years ago is that more and more Washingtonians are moving toward modern design. Growing up in Northern Virginia, colonials and traditional decorating was the standard fare. My clients in their 30s and 40s now are embracing a more eclectic mix that includes, modern, traditional and a more global influence. For example, Jonathan Adler just opened up a store in Georgetown; 14th and U Street corridor is flourishing,” said Levin, who started her DC-based, full-service design firm in 2004.

“If your house/apt. has classic DC bones, then keep the bones but modernize the paint – all white semi-gloss or deep high gloss colors keeping the trim and walls the same color for a less traditional look,” suggests Feldman.

Visit 14th And U Street Shops

The 14th and U Street corridor is vibrant with local vintage shops and independent galleries full of flair for the home. Shops include And Beige, Vastu and Good Wood. There are also stores that appeal to mass audiences, like Mitchell Gold and Room & Board. Feldman says the vintage and antiques here tend to be more affordable than those in other major cities.

Collect From Your Travels

Pack an extra large suitcase on your next vacation to bring back  souvenirs and trinkets that serve as conversation pieces for the home.

“DC is full of people from all over who travel and have big careers and interesting collections. I like showcasing an individual’s or family story and folding it into a great-looking design plan,” said Levin.

Think Outside The Box

It’s a typical notion to play it safe when decorating a space, but express personality and take risks. A little color goes a long way.

“Classic colors like navy, yellow, emerald green do very well in DC homes – it keeps things formal yet interesting, said Feldman.”

When In Doubt, Use Wallpaper

“Wallpaper is a trend that has taken root for the long haul, I think. There are so many independent makers and the options and ideas are more accessible with Pinterest and Houzz. People are exposed to more design images than their monthly shelter pubs or pottery barn catalog. That’s exciting for someone in my profession, because clients are willing to take more of a risk on something new or a bolder design option,” said Levin.

Related: Best Places To Buy Local Art For Less Than $100

Check Out Local Shops
Strictly shopping local for your future home purchases is entirely possible and makes purchasing easier and less time consuming. These stores are a great place to start.

John Rosselli
1515 Wisconsin Ave. N.W.
Washington, DC 20007
(202) 337-7676
www.johnrosselliassociates.com

Random Harvest
1313 Wisconsin Ave. N.W.
Washington, DC 20007
(202) 333-5569
www.randomharvesthome.com

Darrell Dean
1524 Wisconsin Ave. N.W.
Washington, DC 20007
(202) 333-6330
www.darrelldeanantiques.com

Ready to rededo your home? Want to add a bit of flair? You’re not alone. Both designers are hopeful for Washington, DC’s future as a becoming a leading force in the design world.

“DC has a long way to catch up to the more av ant-garde look of NYC or London- but I see everybody dipping their toe in more and opting for more creative and inspired design,” said Levin.

“DC has become more stylish in the last 5 years—paying more attention to trends. People are becoming less attached to the traditional DC look and are becoming more comfortable modernizing their spaces. High gloss paints, Mid-Century modern furniture and metallic are a few of the trends I am seeing here. There is also a lean toward an organic modern movement which I think we will continue to see a lot more of,” said Feldman.

Kelly Johnston is a freelance writer living in D.C. She graduated from the University of Alabama with a degree in Fashion Retail and Merchandising and a minor in Journalism. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.

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