Monday, October 23, 2017

Wood Burning Fireplace. Whitewashed Hardwoods. And The Barefoot Contessa.

Everything we have learned about building DC alley projects has culminated in Cluss Alley Car Barn! 

Wallpaper is hung. Window fabric will be delivered Tuesday. Furniture, art and lighting will be installed on Wednesday; the patios and awnings will be done soon too. 

If you could conjure the perfect urban, family-sized home, this would be it.
  • Walk to Potomac Ave Metro
  • Walk to Eastern Market
  • Walk to Barracks Row
  • Walk to the Navy Yard & National's Stadium


Now that Ina Garten is on a loop in the great room and all of sudden is feels like an OPaL project. 

Classic OPaL: Historic facade. Re-imagined for today's homeowners.

100% OWNED & DEVELOPED BY OPaL: The Way It Should Be.  F.U.M.D.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

You Know I Love a Thank You Note: "Thanks for the Groceries"

We are a super loyal company. We use the same trades in almost every home we build and have done so for years. This is just one reason our homes are solid, thoughtful and full of positive energy.

I just received the nicest thank you note from the gentleman who supplies our retractable awnings. They do great work and I just love what an awning can do for a patio or deck. The additional privacy and cover from the sun are very important if you want to get the most from your outdoor space. I highly recommend SunAir.




Thursday, September 21, 2017

OPaL's Little Red Chapel Gets All Apple Store On Us

Updated sketch of our Little Red Chapel on Capitol Hill:: an uber contemporary addition to the rear of the historic chapel would allow us to move forward with our residential conversion of the chapel. This may not be the final version of what we build, but it sure would be great if it's anything like this. The glassy, contemporary stair tower at the rear corner reminds me of the Apple store on 5th Ave in NYC; it would be a great juxtaposition to the historic facade on the front. The architect added an image by Swoon to the glass side wall which is also interesting.  

This is the fun part. But so is framing day, paint day, landscape day and furniture day!


Design by GPS Designs:: Minturn, Colorado.


Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Building Permits in DC Aren't So Easy To Obtain. Unless They're From 117 Years Ago!

In order to obtain permits for one of our new projects in DC the process can take 7 to 9 months. An outrageous amount of time to wait for permits. The same process in Montgomery County will take no more than two months, with little to no headaches.  

However, in just two weeks we were able to submit a request to DC Archives in order to find the original permits for our latest historic conversion on the Hill. Turns out the original structure was built in 1900 with three additions in the 1940's and 1950's. 

What an interesting day we just had at the DC Archives! Below are photos of paperwork submitted for St. Matthews Parish in 1900.






Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Little Red Chapel on the Hill by OPaL

On the heals of our wildly successful Pittman's Chapel in NW, DC we have just purchased another historic chapel. This time on Capitol Hill, just 3 blocks from our New Union Garage project; another incredibly successful, historic OPaL project. This little jewel of a building is located just few blocks from Union Station, Eastern Market and the new Whole Foods on H St.

We plan to build just two, family sized homes in this structure. That's so OPaL!








Monday, July 31, 2017

Loving our Instagram Pics for Watkins Alley

Our ad agency for Watkins Alley just sent over the best graphic pics for us to use on Instagram. Now we need to have as many followers on Instagram as we do on this super popular blog (thats so OPaL).






Friday, July 14, 2017

OPaL Wins 3 National Awards for Design & Architecture on the Left Coast

My partner and I just got back from an incredible trip to San Diego and Los Angeles where OPaL was honored with 3 national awards for design and architecture. This time for Pittman's Chapel, Morton Street Mews and New Union Garage. I can't convey what an honor is it to be recognized in California for our work on the east coast. New Union Garage even won Multi-Family Project of the Year going up against projects not only from the US but also Asia, South America and Canada. Pretty Awesome, right?!  This is actually the second time our little company from DC has won this award. The last time in 2013 with Naylor Court Stables.

Hope you enjoy our photos.....



My partner, Jason, and I in front of Pittman's Chapel photo board.


That's me up on stage.

Our table mate. She won best Custom Home over 8,000 sf for an incredible, $30 million mansion she designed in Aspen.

Don't know her, but we thought she looked great!

The San Diego Convention Center and the Gold Nugget Awards

The catering was great too!

The awards made it through the TSA, even though they thought the trophy was a block of cheese on the scanner!