DC Design House Closes Its Doors

20 Feb

The DC Design House, was a nonprofit event in Washington DC which started back in 2008 as a way for home decorators like BD Decorators to exhibit their talents for a good cause. The annual event has bid its final farewell, with an announcement that has saddened home decorators in the area.

The closing of the annual charity event was announced on the second week of February 2018, that the DC Design House’s board had decided to disband itself. The event lasted for a decade, with 10 houses across 10 years attracting daring decorators like BD Decorators, to show their creativity in creating Washington style homes. These homes were then shown off to visitors, with the proceedings going to the Children’s National Health System. Throughout the ten years of operations the event managed to raise a total of $2 million in donations.

Skip Singleton, co-founder of the DC Design House program alongside his wife, Debbie Singleton, expressed pride in the good deeds that the program accomplished, but pointed out that it was getting harder and harder to find volunteers willing to take leadership of the program. Another reported reason for the closing of the program was the difficulty of find the right properties that would be able to house the month-long decorator exhibition.

The original concept for the show was to work on one home to raise funding for the Children’s National Health System, all the way back in 2008. The inaugural year of the event drew in 7,500 people from the area, with the home chosen being a 1842 property in Georgetown that  once housed a boys’ school. 14 designers went into the home and transformed it into a show-worthy property, which drew so much interest that the Singletons made it an annual tradition. The last property the DC Design House program transformed was the National Symphony Orchestra Decorator’s Show House, which closed in 2006, following 34 years of operations.

The DC Design House program, in the intervening years, has featured properties with notable items in them, like a 1905 Chevy Chase Georgian, among others. Notably, the 2015 house, was  anew fieldstone home located in McLean which was decorated into a modern Virginia farmhouse. Skip considers this particular iteration of the DC Design House as the most successful one.