June 2015

Mini-Piazza Blends European
Style with Urban Functionality
Photographs by Michael K. Wilkinson

Stephen and Jennifer Giordano, both lawyers, love vacationing in Italy. The couple are of Italian heritage, so it was only natural that they look across the Atlantic for outdoor inspiration.

This Logan Circle rowhouse required creative thinking from their landscape-designer J. Mark White, owner of GardenWise to create a wonderfully Mediterranean atmosphere, within concise precision of their plot, while retaining their off-street parking spot.

To merge their European vision with urban reality, White dreamed up a design inspired by an Italian style piazza-with Roman-style concrete columns-and a secure space for the car below the patio.

The stucco treatment over the brick, terra-cotta-hued paint, and a Tuscan-style fountain, surrounded by low-maintenance crepe myrtles, climbing roses, and upright boxwoods to mimic Italian cypresses. The couple added a tiled dining table and a grilling station set in a fieldstone countertop. Says Jennifer: “The dog likes to cook himself on the stone patio, and we love to grill.” Now the previously neglected space offers something for everyone!

Read full Washingtonian article by Jennifer Barger here >>

Ideas for Designing Outdoor Spaces
Choosing a new color palette and theme are the first steps towards redesigning your outdoor space. But sometimes is helpful to look beyond your immediate surroundings and open your mind to the world beyond our beautiful shores.
Whether your outdoor space is large or small, we should all be able to enjoy our summer outdoors in style! We hope you enjoy these different ideas and find inspiration to create your own oasis. Please follow this link for more great ideas!

Creating Outdoor Inspirations >>

Congratulations to 
Kara Johnson for being recognized by Washingtonian Magazine as one of the Best Real Estate Agents in the Washington, DC area! All awards and honors will be in the up coming 
July 2015 Issue.
Way to go Kara!!
Do you dream of visiting Italy but prefer an authentic experience? Americana in Orvieto is an American living in the historic town of Orvieto, right in the heart of Umbria. She can assist you by being your translator, showing you ancient ruins, local vineyards and farms, special tours of historic Orvieto, trips to Rome or Florence and so much more! The authentic Orvieto experience is heightened by staying in a local B&B, amazing holiday homes, villas or castles, with space to suit your family’s needs, while also taking the opportunity to truly change the pace of life to match Orvieto’s motto, ‘La citta slow.’
Neighborhood Profile: Takoma Park, MD
A Lighter Shade of Green
by UrbanTurf’s, Lillian Dickerson

Once the unquestionable hippie colony of the DC area, Takoma Park may be transitioning to an ever so slightly more mainstream profile. Compromises made to the Maryland neighborhood’s nuclear-free zone ordinance and the dissolution of the Free Burma Committee are perhaps the most palpable signs of this shift. A transforming population and increased commercial options work to reaffirm the area’s mellowing views. Despite these changes, Takoma Park remains a little neighborhood full of socially conscious individuals trying to make a difference. Takoma Park was established in 1883 by developer Benjamin Franklin Gilbert. His goal was to create a neighborhood where federal workers could commute into DC via the railroad. When the neighborhood attempted to incorporate in 1890, however, Montgomery County government could only do so to the Maryland side, splitting the town in two. Thus, Takoma, DC and Takoma Park, Maryland were born &emdash; one of which is decidedly not to be confused with the other. Takoma Park’s border is about a five-minute walk from the Metro station (on the DC side). Housing styles in Takoma Park vary from late 19th century Victorians to craftsman Colonials, bungalows from the 1920s, Cape Cods, American foursquares, farmhouses, and many lovingly restored homes create this tree lined street oasis with redline metro access within walking distance.

Takoma Park’s Laurel Avenue is the town’s bustling main street, with bars, restaurants, vintage stores and much more. After 32 years Takoma is still considered one of the best farmers markets!

Read full UrbanTurf article here >>

Our Own Fantastic Property for Sale in South Carolina!
7 Coming Street, Charleston, SC 29402
Wayne bought this charming home several years ago, and Kara lived here during her undergraduate years.This Charleston Single home located within walking distance of College of Charleston, MUSC, King St. shopping and restaurants! Known as the James Drayton Johnson House c.1839, this home features brand new hardi-plank siding, custom shutters, freshly painted interior, refinished hardwood floors, high ceilings and big windows allow for lots of natural light throughout this entirely updated house! A little bit of history…Johnson, a free African American tailor, whose son married the daughter of William Ellison, a wealthy African American plantation owner, built these 2 small vernacular single houses with gable roofs in the mid 1800s. This property comes with off-street parking, as well as a nice private walled courtyard.


1415 Chapin Street NW #101, Washington, DC
Welcome to this truly unique beautifully-renovated modern 2-bedroom,1-bath condo in the 14th Street Corridor. This home features 865 square feet of living space, brand new wide-plank solid oak hardwood floors, exposed brick on both sides, 10½ foot high ceilings, and recessed LED lighting throughout. Newly-renovated modern full bath conveniently accessed from the hallway between the two bedrooms. Central A/C, south-facing bay window. Completely reconfigured floor plan with brand new contemporary kitchen featuring custom walnut cabinets, ceramic stove top, wall oven, quartz countertops and loads of storage space. The exposed beams in the living room are ready for a mounted TV and the sleek white lacquer built-in media console compliments the industrial chic vibe. Hall closet is washer/dryer ready. Meridian Hill Park, restaurants, organic grocer, CVS, and shops just blocks away. Pet-friendly. Low fee. Perfect Location!

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