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Q. Monique Allen is a Washington, D.C. based residential interior design and lifestyle blog dedicated to capturing and chronicling my experience as a first time custom home builder, consultant on design projects, and consumer of all things "mountain modern" including furniture, fabric, accessories, lighting, and more.



In the current flip that I am working on with my husband, we, regrettably, must get rid of 12 gorgeous, solid wood doors. What's really unfortunate is that most of them are 5 panel solid wood doors with clean, modern lines. The problem? The doors have been painted a few times so it's tough to achieve a "like new" finish without extensive sanding and refinishing (new or "like new" is mandatory in a flip of this price tag). Our general contractor and my husband agree, to my...

What an exciting time! Many families dream of a second home by the water, in the mountains, on a farm or a location that is simply away from it all. However, a second home is a major investment of both time and money. To make owning a second home more affordable, many homeowners, like me, buy or build a vacation home with rental income as a secondary priority. If you fall into that category, here are 4 easy steps to improve your income and secure your investment. 

1 - Choos...

The 5 must see places to visit in St. Kitts and Nevis. Learn more about Pinney's Beach, Sunshine's, Lime, Turtle Time, Cottle Church, Nevis Museum, the Nevis Botanical Gardens, Bath Hotel, and more!

Confession. I'm not a gamer. I've never played Candy Crush or Angry Birds. Actually, I can't remember the last time I played any sort of phone based video game. Design Home has changed all of that! 

The way it works is that you are given a room design challenge. Some challenges require specific items. As you design each room, you use diamonds and cash to buy furniture. You earn more of both when you complete a new challenge. 

The "game" part comes in as each room is jud...

This holiday season I have devoured photos of mountain and lake retreats all decked out for the holidays. Most homes were decorated in a minimal but tasteful style. This makes perfect sense to me because I can't imagine having to haul holiday decorations to a second location or attempt to store boxes upon boxes of bulbs, lights and bows. Nope. Simple is best.

The team that is working on the house just updated me on its (somewhat) slow process. Apparently, the engineers...

The home makeover continues! While I wonder if it will ever be done, I'm not complaining because it offers an endless array of fun design choices. This week, my husband and I are trying to find the perfect light fixture for our master bedroom custom closet makeover. He has created a custom closet design with shelving, hanging storage, and drawers (we checked and this closet would retail for nearly $10,000 - thankful for a handy hubby!!). The finish is a gorgeous walnut wit...

While homeowners, and the designers who work for them, are focused on designing spaces that they love, real estate investors have completely different goals in mind. Our latest project is a full gut renovation of a 3 story row house in Columbia Heights in Washington, DC. My husband and I are serving as design consultants on the project as well as investors.

The general contractor and investment group have done a fantastic job of buying the home "right" with lots of roo...

A holiday gift giving guide for kids, teens, partners, friends and everyone else who you want to celebrate with something other than a store-bought gift!

For years I've loved the mountains. The majesty of rolling hills towering over deep, secluded valleys has a way of grounding me. Being amongst the mountains is a constant reminder of just how small each of us are and how big and impressive our world is. I am always trying to get back there...

For nearly 10 years, I've had a home in the mountains at the top of my bucket list. Until now, it simply wasn't possible. The stars have now aligned. This past summer, I worked with a...

We all love a festive home! As fall fades and winter arrives, I can't help but think of the sweet smell of Christmas pine and warm mugs of hot chocolate. In early September, I was blessed to give birth to the sweetest little boy. He has been such an incredible joy (and an incredible responsibility). So when the cool weather rolled in, I longed for Pumpkin spiced lattes and fall foliage crafts, but somehow I could not quite find the time in my day.

My aunt and mother arrive...

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Q. Monique Allen

Have you ever felt like there is something really special that brings you joy that you simply don't do enough of? I'm not sure what that might be for you, but for me, it's feeding my passion for interior design, furniture and the arts (all of them - visual, performing, culinary...). With a full time career in financial services in Washington, DC, a bustling family, a demanding schedule (and the list goes on), it's tough to find time for things that you love! But, I've committed to MORE. More inspiration...more hands on expression of my own creativity...and more beauty in my world. As I explore and expand my own space and fill it with chic "mountain modern" design, experiences, and ideas, I look forward to using this lifestyle and design blog to share them with you.

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@2015 Q. Monique Allen

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