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Ideas from the DC Design House

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The Washington Post's Local Living reporter Jura Koncius points out some of her favorite rooms, accessories and decorating trends in the 2010 DC Design House.

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By Jura Koncius
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, April 8, 2010

The third annual DC Design House opening Saturday in Chevy Chase is a snapshot of Washington style in 2010. Twenty local design firms, a mix of established names and first-timers, have redecorated Wirelawn, a country Georgian house at 3911 Bradley Lane.

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It is open for the next month for those who relish checking out polished interiors and anyone who has been curious about this lush 1.5-acre property while stalled in traffic trying to reach Connecticut Avenue.

After its makeover, the stately brick house remains true to the traditional, classical decorating style preferred by locals here for centuries. Despite a few rooms you might yawn through, it has plenty of urbane spaces worthy of a national design magazine spread.

The pale grays, light blues and other neutral colors flow well throughout the house, almost as if designers had been tweeting throughout the project. Many have injected their own personality into rooms that highlight indoor-outdoor living, Moroccan style and spa-like bedrooms.

Through its 100-plus-year history, this 35-room house has been home to a family of 10 children, the location of an inaugural ball, an embassy and the site of a 1974 show house where the look was turreted wicker beds, zebra rugs and draped pink polyester.

Styles come and go, as do Washington's decorating budgets. A great take-away from the show house, which benefits Children's National Medical Center: the printed list of Farrow & Ball paints used in each room that's handed to you as you walk in. Another: the trends and tips we've selected here.


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