Roanna and Michael Kessler learned a
lot during the design and construction
of their new 4,000-square-foot home
in Chevy Chase. Here, Roanna shares
some of her takeaways:
Be smart: Visit your architect and
builder’s previous projects to see how
some of the ;nishes and features look
Plan well: Work closely with your
architect and designer until you’re
completely satis;ed with the layout.
Once the builder starts framing it’s
dif;cult and costly to move walls.
Break it up: To maintain sanity
and avoid getting overwhelmed by
the selection of materials, categorize
architectural/design elements into easily
manageable groups, such as lighting,
cabinetry, tiles and plumbing ;xtures.
You know best: When selecting
materials and elements, choose
based on what is important to you and
works with your lifestyle rather than
automatically getting the highest-end
products or what is being pushed by
vendors. Try to think long term and
timeless, rather than trendy.
Splurge-worthy: Know the spaces
you want to splurge on and which rooms
can be approached with economy.
Get inspired: Flip through home
design magazines and browse websites
like Houzz and Pinterest for inspiration.
Be sure to share your ideas and
clippings with your architect, builder and
Be original: Incorporate unique
items into your interior design, like
unusual light ;xtures, handcrafted
vanities from antique stores and other
Make it yours: Personal ;nishes
and details make a house feel like a
home. Do customized features that
are personal. For example, the wood
inlay on the dining room ;oor has a
Stay in the moment: Try to enjoy the
process. Building your home isn’t an
everyday activity. It’s special.