Before I launch into the grande dame of house tours that’s taking place this weekend, I owe you a bit of an explanation for my absence from the blog these last several weeks. My mother died after a years-long battle with cancer on April 5, and I’ve been slow to come back to my normal routines. I’m still dragging, in fact, so your indulgence is much appreciated.
One thing my mother just loved was beautiful things. She decorated her home in McLean with only the best—sumptuous fabrics and wallcoverings, antiques and fine art, artifacts she’s collected on travels around the world. And so I think it’s particularly fitting that my first blog post back from her loss is about the annual Georgetown House Tour, which takes place this Saturday, on April 29. For a $50 ticket, you can tour eight stunning homes in the village, and enjoy tea at St. John’s Episcopal Church, whose outreach programs benefit from the ticket sales.
And here’s a taste of the beauty you’ll see: Designer Michele Evans was kind enough to show me her “new” home on 28th Street—new to her, at least. She’s turned this early 19th-century home into a modern vision of comfort and class.
The house is the ultimate expression of high and low. While Michele is no stranger to the Washington Design Center, she’s also not above to purchasing grasscloth-like Con-Tact paper and covering a file chest with it, as you see above in the foreground, while the “real” cocktail table is on order.
Airy, light-filled family rooms with wide expanses of windows are a rarity in Georgetown. But Michele found this one, with an unusually expansive side yard, which was renovated in the 1970s by Georgetown architect David Jones. She makes the space—and light—even bigger with a mirrored arcade that lines the terrace.
I was stunned to find out that Michele chose Ikea cabinetry for her open kitchen. Who knew?? Her secret is to use expensive hardware, such as the brass pulls from Rejuvenation. She divided the soapstone top from a table she already had to create gorgeous countertops for the chests in the rear.
Stay tuned for more incredible details from her home if you take the tour, which includes the dreamiest lady’s boudoir and bedroom and a crisp blue-and-white guest room upstairs.
Still unsure about your plans this Saturday? Read the full descriptions of the eight homes on the tour, right here. And then go purchase a ticket. Fun fact: the tour is once again being run by Jill and Scott Altman. Capt. Altman is a veteran of four NASA space flights, spent more than 50 days in space and commanded the final two Hubble servicing missions. These are the kinds of people who live in Georgetown, and this tour is such a unique opportunity to see the beautiful environments in which they live.
Oh, and because it’s the full season for house tours, check out this wonderful roundup of tours around the area this spring in The Washington Post. Happy Spring!