Blog Info

Thumbnail Photograph of Interior Designer David Mitchell

This is the Blog about me, what I like, what I do and what I am interested in. As one of Washington DC's most popular and respected interior designers I get to do a lot. The idea of this Blog is to express my opinions and interests in the world of interiors, product design, food, fashion and current issues. I love living in Washington DC.


If you are looking for an interior designer to help you create a great living space that reflects you as an individual please checkout my website and contact me at David Mitchell Interior Design and check out our blog at David Mitchell Uncensored

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Go Green!

Recycle Symbol
Capital Bike Share
Electric Car Charging Station
Environmentally friendly rooftop 
How cool is my city we already have electric car charging stations. This one is on 14th street near U street. We also have Capital Bike Share which is a great program with 1100 bikes and 110 stations throughout DC and now has expanded to Arlington, VA. You can rent a bike for as little as a day or get a membership for as long as a year. Also in DC we have the Green Roof Initiative in which you can get a tax credit for building a green roof on top of your building.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Spring Green

Green Pillows from Beautiful Pillows and Home

Check out these amazing spring green pillows from Beautiful Pillows and Home. A perfect way to freshen up your home this time of the year and they're only $90 each. To purchase them go to Beautiful Pillows and Home

Saturday, March 26, 2011

DC Design House Update 3

One of the things about putting together a showhouse is getting all the accessories right. Elizabeth and I have been working on editing and figuring out what sort story we want to tell and decided that the showhouse room is all about texture. So, we have been pulling accessories from my house, the office and calling some of our favorite shops to see what will work. Today I think we have some of the things worked out, here is a sneak peak.

Bone beads on a raffia cord, a piece of American pottery, a vintage Orvis pocket watch in a Chinese bowl. Just some of the things we have found.

Vintage ceramic pot that we had made into a lamp.
Just four of the 38, Olof Rudbeck’s, bird prints that will hang in our room.
6 of the Makins hat collection from my house that we are using.

Friday, March 25, 2011

It's Cherry Blossom Time

One of the most beautiful things about living in Washington DC is to experience the cherry blossoms. "Japan gave 3,020 cherry blossom trees as a gift to the United States in 1912 to celebrate the nations' then-growing friendship, replacing an earlier gift of 2000 trees which had to be destroyed due to disease in 1910. These trees were planted in Sakura Park in Manhattan and famously line the shore of the Tidal Basin in Washington, D.C.. The gift was renewed with another 3,800 trees in 1965." From Wikipedia  This year it is even more special because of the current situation in Japan.

Map of Japan
Picture of the Cherry Blossom near the Thomas Jefferson Memorial
Detail of a cherry blossom bloom
Cherry Blossom Trees along the Tidal Basin

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Seeing A New Light

David Mitchell Interior Design Cool Light Blub
Plumen 001 light bulb
How cool is this...

The Plumen 001 light bulb has just won design of the year from the Brit Design Awards for product design. This is a compact florescent bulb that uses 80% less energy and last 8 times longer then any incandescent bulb. And it looks just as great hanging in an interior as any reproduction clear Edison bulb.
The Plumen 001 light bulb hanging in a restaurant
The Plumen 001 light bulb hanging in a restaurant

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Flying With New Wings

When designer Victoria Hagan introduced her first furniture collection in 2003 she started a modern revolution by introducing her Wainscott Wing Chair. This barrel back chair has become one of the most influential and copied pieces of furniture in the last 8 years. From modernist to traditionalist, from Ballard Design to Edward Ferrell, everyone has been influenced by this chair.
Victoria Hagan
Victoria Hagan
Wing Chairs
I look at wing back chairs as being almost sculptural in a room. They can add a sense of warmth and a sense of drama. I now find that I use wing back chairs in both modern and traditional interiors.
David Mitchell Interior Design Client House Photo
Wainscott Wing Chairs used in a Chevy Chase house, David Mitchell Interior Design, Washington Home and Design Magazine 
David Mitchell Interior Design using wing chairs in a clients house
David Mitchell Interior Design, Washington Spaces Magazine
David Mitchell Interior Design Client house that uses wing chairs
David Mitchell Interior Design, Southern Accents Magazine

Friday, March 18, 2011

This Issue Is A Keeper

Cover of Veranda Magazine April 2011
Cover of Veranda Magazine April 2011
People know that I am a huge critic of what is happening in the world of shelter magazines. Over the last year I have seen so many ugly projects being published. I was beginning to wonder whether editors had lost their mojo, mommy bloggers had taken over or bad taste is now the norm. Then the April edition of Veranda arrived where editor in chief, Dara Caponigro and her editorial staff had put together a pitch perfect edition. From my friend, Frank Babb Randolph’s Georgetown project to David Kleinberg’s interior for a New York apartment which is probably the prettiest and most beautifully executed spread I have seen in three years, this issue is a keeper.

Dara, call me! I have a project for you

DC Design House 2011 Part 2

The original wallpaper is being stripped off the walls and ceiling. Our painter had the fun task of doing it saying it felt like 7 layers.
David Mitchell Interior Design Show House 2011 Image 1
Painter removing the horrible wallpaper from the ceiling
David Mitchell Interior Design Show House Image 2
Stripped Walls

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Is Wood Grain Having A Moment?

David Mitchell Interior Design 42

Have you noticed how much wood grain pattern is popping up in fashion, interior design, tabletop and home furnishings? Is this all about the earthy munchy crunchies? Or is this a ploy for bringing the outdoors in?  Does this have to do more with our awareness of the environment? Is it a reaction to the feminization of America? Is this an extension of the whole ‘urban woodsman’ trend that has been pervasive in men’s fashion over the last couple of years that started with Freemans Sporting Club in NYC?  Or does it have to do with the earth’s limited amount of resources and our new love for the beauty of wood?
David Mitchell Interior Design 43
Redwood Forest Trees
Kate and Laura Mulleavy who design the Rodarte Clothing line has created a collection inspired by the Redwood Forest of California and used custom wood grain fabrics in their spring and summer line.
David Mitchell Interior Design 44
Three looks from the Rodarte line
David Mitchell Interior Design 45
Savafieh Rugs
Savafieh Rugs has a beautiful collection of wood grain pattern carpets. These rugs would be great in a den or very open family room that has lots of windows. The wood grain pattern would add some earthy warmth to the space.

David Mitchell Interior Design 46
Keds Wood Grain Shoes
To keep you ‘rooted’ Keds has come up with a wood grain pattern sneaker that would be great for an alternative to your Birkenstocks.

David Mitchell Interior Design 47
Michael Aram Dinnerware
Michael Aram has designed a wonderful collection of grange colored wood grain dinnerware. How perfect would this be for your brother’s mancave? Or it could add an interesting texture to a modern glass top dinning table.

David Mitchell Interior Design 48
Wood Grain Glasses
Urban Spectacles in Chicago has a huge line of hard-carved wooden frames. If you are into the big Truman Capote kinda glasses this would be a perfect choice for a lighter summer look and a good alternative for the heavy black frames that are associated with this trend. Individuality rules.
David Mitchell Interior Design 49
Beautiful Pillows and Home Morning Wood Pillow
Beautiful Pillows and Home has this wonderful pillow on their website with a raised wood grain pattern composed of linen and cotton.
David Mitchell Interior Design 50
Hallmark Wood Grain Wrapping Paper
This past fall Hallmark had a series of wood grain wrapping paper (no longer available). This paper would be a great way to perfectly wrap a gift for a guy.
David Mitchell Interior Design 51
Roy Hamilton Long Neck Lamps
Roy Hamilton has just introduced a wood grain pattern to his outstanding lamp collection. The pattern comes in three colors and is available on most of his lamp bases.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Just the Right Light

Since I work in a verity of styles everything from traditional to modern I have really learned that no matter how great the table is, the chairs are and the back drop is, the lighting fixture (the chandelier) is what makes the dining room sing.

In this very traditional county house the walls are painted and waxed with the song birds of Virginia. The chairs are covered in a cut velvet and the table is walnut with a brass inlay. But, the gold leaf and crystal Swedish chandelier is the item that pulls it all together.

This very eclectic house with a French wine tasting table, art deco chairs and the two large host chairs upholstered in a very earthy gray and chocolate brown print which echo the graphic pattern of the painted striped floors. I found this rather modest light fixture that is both traditional and contemporary at the same time. Remarkably this fixture is inexpensive costing only $195.00. But, it seemed to be the perfect chandelier for this dining room.

In this Arlington VA home in which I designed to have a more contemporary California feel to it. My wonderful assistant Elizabeth found this great modern chandelier which is a mixture of chrome and hand formed glass drops. This is perfect for a young couples home.


Wednesday, March 9, 2011

DC Design House 2011 Update

Demolition on the DC Design House 2011 has begun...there is no turning back now.

Beautiful Pillows

Just found these great raffia pillows on Beautiful Pillows and Home. They are a perfect way to bring the feeling of spring indoors. Changing your pillows is always a great way to update your house season to season.

Play Time

Spring also brings the desire for outdoor activity. Weather it is tennis,softball or my fav kayaking.

There is nothing cooler then a clear kayak. Clear Blue who has won a design award from the Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum makes this version.


Cool Kicks

One of the first signs of spring is the emergence of my Seavees from the back of my closet. If you don’t know what Seevees are they are a small shoe manufacturer in California. Each year they choose 5-6 pantone colors and custom dye their sneakers to match. So perfect for a designer. What makes Seavee sneakers unique is that the fronts are suede and the backs are canvas.



Although the days are beginning to get longer, we still have a couple more weeks of winter to survive. There was actually snow on my front lawn this past Sunday evening. Since we are all wishing for Spring to hurry up and get here, here are some things to move it along. One of the most beautiful ways to bring spring into your house year round is with a landscape painting. A more contemporary way to do it is with photography.

One of my favorite landscape photographers is Lynn Geesaman. I successfully used a pair of Geesaman photos in a client's apartment in Washington, DC.

This detail shows how I used a rich leaf green and blue on the sofa to bring the outside in.

Friday, March 4, 2011


Every time we do a project we do an inspiration board. This is the one we put together for the 2011 DC Design House for the bedroom we are designing.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Lady Gaga Is Beautiful!

Lady Gaga has Balls!

Lady Gaga has balls! You heard it here first and come to think of it I think Anna Wintour, editor of Vogue, has grown a pair herself for putting Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta on the cover. I have always been a big fan of Ms. Wintour as an editor. Vogue is a magazine that never talks down to women and Anna Wintour’s choice of Lady Gaga on the cover of the March issue celebrated her intelligence, talent and beauty.

To Tee Or Not To Tee That Is The Question

Three years ago while on vacation I purchased 2 James Perse tee shirts, and, yes, at the time I questioned my sanity of paying $45.00 each. But I was on vacation, and we all do crazy things then. Now it is three years later and I have a stack of inexpensive tee shirts from the Gap and J. Crew that I am about to turn into dust cloths because they all shrank, the collars fell apart or the fabric just disintegrated, but not my James Perse tees. They never shrank and still fit beautifully and almost look brand new 3 years later. A tee shirt is one of the backbones of a man's wardrobe. A good tee shirt, or should I say great tee shirt, is worth $45.00.

Spring Show House

In most large metropolitan areas during the Spring there is always a designer show-house. In Washington it is the DC Design House that raises money for Children’s Hospital, one of my favorite charities. So, I choose to participate. Most of the time when I design a show-house room I choose one of the larger main rooms, like a living room or dining room. But this year I wanted to do a small intimate space, so I am designing a small bedroom on the 2nd floor. One of the most interesting parts of a show-house is the transition from a room of horrors to something beautiful, functional and appealing. This year I've decided to take a slightly different approach and design a room for guys. Show-houses have a tendency to be over run by a lack of originality, so that everything tends to look the same. It seems like a lot of young designers don’t take the time to develop their own voice, and as result they become interchangeable.

Over the next month I will be posting photos of the progress and final installation of the room. So, lets start with the before.

To give you more of an idea of how this all works,  here are some photos of the last DC Design House where I participated.  The house was a beautiful Victorian in Georgetown, and Elizabeth and I designed the Living Room.

A showhouse always begins with an empty room. Sometimes you are lucky and the space already has great bones, which makes it easier to have a wonderful decorating project.

When you have great bones then you need great things to go in it.

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