Home & Design

Local designers Iantha Carley, Dennese Guadeloupe Rojas, Quintece Hill-Mattauszek, Shawna Underwood and Charles Almonte founded the DC Design Collective to promote diversity and foster racial visibility in the design industry throughout DC Metro area.

Please join us for an enlightening conversation about equality in the design world with DCDC’s founding members. Moderated by editor in chief Sharon Jaffe Dan, the webinar will touch upon the challenges facing BIPOC (Black, Indigenous and People of Color) designers and efforts underway to mentor under-represented students and encourage them to enter the field.


Get to know these prominent designers and their obsessions and favorites.

Meet Bonnie

Name an heirloom you’d never part with.
I will never part with my family photographs. I have over a century of captured moments in time and I love looking at them with family and friends.

I live in...
The same home where I raised my children. Twenty-four years later, it still has a traditional exterior, but the interior has gone through many transformations as my personal style has evolved. I feel at home every time I walk through the front door.

I obsess over...
Beautiful stone and marble tiles. There are so many varieties and ways of using them. I believe good design comes from nature.

Name a favorite design trend and why you like it.
I love that wall covering has made a major comeback. Grass cloth provides texture that paint can never achieve, while patterns can bring a room to life.

Bonnie Ammon Interiors

Meet Dennese

I live in...
A 20-year-old, transitionally styled home with distinctive, welcoming doorways and well-manicured yards. Design begins at the curb.

My design pet peeve is...
Designers who under-quote the cost of a project. Realistic budget quotes reflect well on the entire design industry. Over-budget is too often synonymous with

What famous person’s home would you love to design?
Naomi Osaka. She is young and multi-cultural. I envision her home reflecting the tranquility and minimalism of Japanese design with the vibrant colors of her
Haitian heritage.

What’s your favorite go-to dish to cook at home?
My family and friends love my Trinidadian macaroni pie (a.k.a. mac and cheese).

Interiors by Design LLC

Meet Arlene + Samantha

Interior Concepts’ principal Arlene Critzos and her colleague, Samantha Sopp-Wittwer, design stunning spaces in every style.

I live in...
ARLENE: A complex balance of European traditional and clean transitional styles.

I obsess over...
SAMANTHA: All things beautiful and how they are designed. No time period is excluded. Each yields endless inspiration.

What famous person’s home would you love to design?
SAMANTHA: Marie Antoinette’s. I am completely enamored with the grandeur of the past, from the clothes they wore to the homes and gardens they built. They are nothing short of wondrous.

Name a favorite design trend.
SAMANTHA: Wallpaper and its ability to add impact, drama and depth to any given space.

What is your favorite color combination and why?
ARLENE: All natural colors with punctuations of bolder colors.

What’s your favorite go-to dish to cook?
ARLENE: As an Italian, of course, pasta prepared 100 different ways.

Interior concepts, Inc.

Meet Melissa

Name an heirloom you’d never part with and why.
A still life painted by my grandmother. Her creativity inspired my love of art and design.

I live in...
A cozy and welcoming 1939 Cape Cod that has been countlessly reworked. I love the fact that we’ll never need to downsize!

I obsess over...
Fresh flowers beautiful, fragrant and always the star of any room.

My design pet peeve is...
Too many accessories. Keep it simple, curate carefully and let a few things shine.

What is your favorite color combination and why?
Blue and white— it’s simple, elegant and timeless.

Favorite go-to dish to cook at home?
Tomato sauce with turkey mango meatballs. Both savory and sweet and always in demand!


Meet Barbara

Name an heirloom you’d never part with and why.
There is nothing I own that I would not be willing to give away if I knew it would be cherished.

I live in...
A 1970s redwood contemporary in the woods with lots of glass to let in natural light and connect with nature.

I obsess over...
Everything. I am a perfectionist and it translates into every area of my life.

What famous person’s home would you love to design and why?
I like to make all my clients feel like celebrities. Even if you can’t be a celebrity, live like one!

What is your favorite color combination and why?
I have never met a color I didn’t like. I look for colors that resonate with clients and have techniques to establish what they will find most joyful and satisfying.

Barbara Hawthorn Interiors, Ltd.

HOME&DESIGN, published bi-monthly by Homestyles Media Inc., is the premier magazine of architecture and fine interiors for the Washington, DC, Maryland and Virginia region.

The company also publishes an annual H&D Sourcebook of ideas and resources for homeowners and professionals alike. H&D Chesapeake Views is published bi-annually and showcases fine home design and luxury living in and around the Chesapeake Bay.

The H&D Portfolio of 100 Top Designers spotlights the superior work of selected architects, interior designers and landscape architects in major regions of the US.

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