noelle o designs

creativity + sewing + upcycling inspiration

design, garden, travel

Michelle and her neighbors

Been walking miles and miles all around Washington, Maryland and Virginia, through the city and the suburbs. It feels great, just like riding a bike around familiar and unfamiliar places alike, you can absorb so much more detail than you can from the inside of a car or bus. Where I’m from (the vast western landscape of Utah) and in my position (the Mom), I don’t get nearly enough opportunity to walk very many places. Ashamedly, I admit to traveling by car and always hurriedly. This week I’ve been absorbing the details- the flowers, colors and the architecture. Best of all, we got to tour the White House. Here’s a glimpse of what caught my eye:

Color envy.

If only azaelas grew like that where I’m from…

Rad purple house with huge pink azaleas in the front yard.

Modern twist on colonial.

Warm and inviting tiny side porch.


All my dreams came true when we got to tour the White House. I’m a huge Michelle Obama fan, and although the tour only included the main level and rooms that the first lady doesn’t get to redecorate, it was still a tremendous honor to walk through such a historic landmark. Sorry, no pictures allowed (you’ll have to schedule a tour for yourself) but let’s just say it was fantastic. I wished I had my sketchbook and a pencil and then a photographic memory.

Finally, I can get the camera back out again.

Highlights-  Seeing Bo the dog frolicking on the lawn, the draperies, silk wallpaper, and all the portraits of former president and first ladies hanging throughout the house.
The Secret Service were very friendly and informative, giving you a full account of anything you could think to ask.
Thanks Obamas for letting me take a peek.


  1. ModernAlice

    April 25, 2012 at 9:45 pm

    Beautiful photos! I especially love the house in the third one

    1. noelleodesigns

      April 26, 2012 at 3:38 pm

      At first I was discouraged because the early morning light wasn’t ideal and I almost walked on past. But thanks to the photo app “BeFunky” (like Instagram but more photo editing options and the option to not make your photos live until when and where you want) I came up with this picture, one of my favorites too.

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