A Capitol Hill Beauty

January 14, 2013

 

 

Made another visit over to Capitol Hill over the weekend and snapped a photo of one of my favorite exterior projects. It usually takes forever for things to get wrapped up and tweaked to “perfection” but my client had finally replaced a light fixture and refinished her beautiful mahogany door (with marine varnish). The entry, completed:

 

 

 

 

Before (tired, peeling, blah…blah):

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And after (Benjamin Moore Dorset Gold  HC-8 on the body/ Dark Walnut BMCC 1358 as accent):

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Oh how I adore the eclectic architecture in this neighborhood.  Many of these  ”pressed brick” townhouses date from the late 1800′s and  have “Italianate” ornamentation.  The paint treatments are all over the map, some more traditional and others really funky and irreverent.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And there is the lively Eastern Market, in full swing on weekends. Check it out, enjoy the stroll and… and be sure to look up while you’re walking!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Eastern Market

 

 

 

Nantucket Gray and Paula Broadwell

November 16, 2012

 

 

Ha!  Did that get your attention?  Couldn’t resist. Headed over to the historic Mt. Pleasant neighborhood in Washington, D.C. yesterday to photograph one of my latest exterior projects.

 

 

 

 

 

BEFORE:

 

 

 

Yes, this historic row house was ready for a major facelift. After testing numerous gray/greens we settled on Benjamin Moore’s Nantucket Gray for the brick body.  Take a look at the slate tiles on the upper portion- yes, they had been painted  a dreary BROWN.  We chose a medium gray (like the real thing) for that surface – Rock Gray 1615 and a darker version, Cheating Heart 1617 for the shutters.  A warm off-white – Grand Teton White AC-42 brought the trim back to life, especially on the dentil detail above the porch.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The porch ceiling on this house is a prominent surface because the house is elevated  with the ceiling very visible from the street.  A soft silvery gray with just a hint of blue was chosen- Pelican Gray 1612.  Steps and porch floor were repainted with a darker khaki River Gorge Gray 1537.   There is heavy stonework near the front entrance (not shown) which inspired some of the neutral palette.

 

 

 

 

We debated about removing all shutters but the owners wanted to keep them.  The addition of shutters on the lower level might make the house a bit more balanced… perhaps a future project.

Which brings me to…….. Paula Broadwell

 

 

 

 

So  yesterday, while photographing this project,  I encountered the media stakeout of the above.

 

 

 

Apparently, Paula has been holed up in her brother’s Georgian Revival mansion in Mt. Pleasant–all week.  Of course, I took note of the cheery yellow color and wasn’t wild about the porch ceiling treatment- a stained natural wood (blue would have been better). Just saying.

 

 

 

A few other snaps of neighboring beauties:

 

 

 

 

 

 

So… I hope Paula gets out of the house (and town) today and lets the neighborhood return to normal.  Just another interesting day in our nation’s capital. Take a stroll through Mt. Pleasant  this weekend … great history, eclectic architecture, color, and, for now, lots of cameras.

 

Happy Weekend!

 

 

 

Transformed Rowhouse Exterior ~Redux

July 27, 2012

 

 

I just returned from a completed row house exterior project in Old Town, Alexandria and had to share.

 

 

 

The  row house, dating back to the 1800s, is situated  in a block of  houses that are much the same. Many have been remodeled but most retain the original “facade”. In this particular block, many of the homes are set back with a small front garden and white picket fence.

 

 

When starting to pull together color options for exteriors I always take into consideration the color schemes of neighboring houses. This pretty blue one sits directly across the street.

 

 

And this saturated red exterior is directly next door.

 

Entrance before

 

So here is the entrance of my project.  The house was painted an “anemic” gray with darker trim and a faded  blue door.  Not enough contrast. Very tired. Very bland. Fabulous bones…much room for improvement.

 

 

Exterior before

 

With such a small slice of exterior, three window boxes looked too busy.   Because all houses on the block had white painted fences, I didn’t consider changing that, but the white didn’t relate to anything else on the house.  The door treatment was all wrong. I usually paint the storm to match the door rather than the surrounding trim.

 

Exterior after

 

Here is the house with its new colors.  The facade is now more snappy and ordered.  There is nice crisp contrast with the fresh white trim on trim and window sashes (which now relates to the fence).  After testing with large samples, we settled on one of my favorite mid-tone neutral colors for the exterior- Benjamin Moore’s Briarwood. Trim is Brilliant White; shutters and door are Black Forest Green. I limited the colors to three only to keep things clean and simple on this tiny plane (restraint– this is Virginia).  The house sits nicely with its neighbors and is ~ much improved.  All it needs is a spot of  color in that one little window box. Another happy client!

 

Benjamin Moore Briarwood

 

 

Benjamin Moore Black Forest Green