Bohemian Modern

Home Alterations in McLean, VA

Bohemian Modern: Maximizing charm with new functionality

Architects: Christiane deJong AIA, Builder: Lakewood Home Builders

Meeting the Family

Marta and Bill*, along with their four children, approached us with a unique challenge. Swayed by its distinctive character and charm, they had settled in a unique 1970s Vermont ski-chalet style home in McLean, Virginia. As a busy family though their love of the home’s style was soon overshadowed by the awareness that it lacked the functionality they needed from it. The quirky layout, once a draw, made it difficult to accommodate their dynamic lifestyles that include homeschooling, sports, and frequent guests. Recognizing the need for a thoughtful renovation, they sought our expertise at deJong Studio.

When we began our first step was to understand their daily routines and aspirations. How did they use each space? What were their favorite aspects of the house, and what frustrated them? We asked Marta and Bill about their cooking habits, their favorite reading spots, and how they balanced work and play. This dialogue helped us pinpoint the home’s shortcomings and identify their priorities.


Uncovering the Potential

The existing home had a lot of potential but needed a reimagined layout to serve the family’s needs better. The main issues were the lack of a full guest bath on the first floor, insufficient study space, and under-utilized areas like the master bedroom loft office. With these insights, Christiane proposed a comprehensive renovation plan that would transform the house while preserving its unique charm.

Her design approach focused on enhancing functionality and creating aesthetically pleasing spaces. She envisioned a home where each family member could thrive, whether working, studying, or relaxing. The new design included a renovated kitchen, a new powder room, a dedicated homeschool study area, a second primary en suite, a Moroccan-style reading niche, and an additional upper-level hall bath.




Design Development and Execution

To achieve this vision, we planned significant changes while respecting the home’s original character. Christiane began by redesigning the kitchen with a blend of hickory wood and white cabinets, handcrafted Zellige Moroccan tiles, and cement solid surface countertops. This not only modernized the space but also added a touch of Marta’s Spanish heritage.

The new powder room became a highlight with its Moroccan ceramic bowl sink and wall-mounted spigot faucet, adding an exotic flair to the house. For the children’s homeschool study space, we created a bright, organized area that fosters creativity and learning.

A key part of the renovation was the new second primary en suite, which provided a luxurious retreat for Bill and Marta. We also added a Moroccan-style reading niche with a custom-built daybed, cabinetry, and paneling, offering a cozy corner for the family’s avid readers.



Harmonizing Old and New

One of the main challenges was to seamlessly integrate the new elements with the existing structure. We ensured that the renovated spaces retained the home’s original charm while introducing modern comforts. The foyer now features slate flooring, setting a welcoming tone as one enters the house. The new upper-level hall bath, with its playful patterned cement tiles, adds a bold yet harmonious touch to the home.






The Finishing Touches

The renovation would not be complete without the attention to detail that brings everything together. Custom cabinetry, intricate paneling, and thoughtful design choices throughout the house ensure that every space is both functional and beautiful. The Moroccan-style accents and modern design elements reflect Marta and Bill’s love for global aesthetics and contemporary living.


Marta and Bill are delighted with their transformed home. The renovation by deJong Studio not only meets their practical needs but also enhances their lifestyle, making every day more enjoyable. This project is a testament to how thoughtful design can turn a house into a home where memories are made and cherished.




Contact Us:

3327 Hemlock Drive
Falls Church, Virginia 22042

Office: (571) 450-0500