The #aCreativeDC FIELD GUIDES are resources for the creative community:
whether you live, work, or visit DC - we got you. Check the FIELD GUIDES tab ^^ at top^^ for more.
The #aCreativeDC FIELD GUIDE to RETAIL + SHOPPING
is a round-up of our brick + mortar recommendations for locally-owned,
unique-to-DC shops, products, and experiences.
We're talking apparel and accessories; gifts and home goods – now go and get 'em.
Arts Walk at Monroe Street Market
716 Monroe Street NE
27 studios + workspaces (including ours!) line the ground floor of the Monroe Street Market apartment complex, a very solid third of which are proper retail outlets. See: leather workers Stitch & Rivet, ceramicists Kuzeh Pottery, jewelry designers Kicheko and Rachel Pfeffer Designs, stationery + vintage shop Analog, and handmade haven Marcelle's Coop – plus individual artists + galleries selling work from a wide spectrum of mediums (ex: the Latela Gallery showroom, and Black Lab). Hours vary per space, but the weekly Saturday AM Farmers Market (thru December) is a good time to catch multiple studios open at once.
Visit site for full list of retailers + artists; hours vary.
[ Brookland ]
Related – art x retail : Off The Beaten Track Warehouse, Anacostia Arts Center, 52 O Street Artists Studios, Red Dirt Studios, Transformer, Honfleur Gallery, Vivid Gallery, DC Arts Studios, Open Studio DC, Corinto Gallery, Gallery O on H, Touchstone, Hole In The Sky, The Stew, Distinctly Creative, and Uptown Art House – all are spaces or galleries hosting multiple artists/makers/retailers with art + work for purchase, whether during regular hours or open studios/openings/events.
Click through to each for general 411, events, and hours.
The Big Bad Woof
6960 Maple Street NW
Gifts for your goldfish! Doo-dads for your dogs! Christmas cards for your cats and Hannukah happiness for your gila monsters! It's pet stuff, guys. It's pet stuff.
[ Takoma Park ] [ fb page ]
Femme Fatale Pop-Up
100 Florida Avenue, NE
By womyn, for womyn: Femme Fatale DC features wares and art from over 50 womyn-owned businesses, plus an incredible amount of programming and events (check their calendar for details + to mark your planner).
[ NOMA ] [ IG @femmefataledc ]
Related – thematic + for a cause: The Outrage (ffffff), Shop Made in DC (ffffffff), One Love Massive (bc you need a DC AS FUCK tee, 631 T Street NW)
Hill & Dale
1054 31st Street NW, Washington, DC
Clean + minimal + V. COOL, Hill & Dale sells records, posters, and fine art music photography. Tucked away in a square off the main Georgetown beat, selling mostly new vinyl and kitted out with modern design elements, it's a(n almost literal) hidden gem.
[ Georgetown ] [ IG @hilllanddalerecords ]
Related: Som Records (used + new in a great little basement dive, 14th Street), Red Onion Records (U Street Corridor), Joint Custody (records + an excellent curation of vintage clothing, pins, shoes, and ephemera, U Street Corridor), Smash (a DC punk + hardcore institution: a record shop with vintage clothing racks, shoes, pins, and Manic Panic, Adams Morgan), Gumbo Records/DC Treasure (a vinyl lounge specializing in jazz + blues, wall-to-wall within a vintage furniture shop – the result is delightful chaos. Petworth).
Idle Time Books
Come for the two-story selection of used books; stay for the delightful curmudgeon-ess of the longtime owner; stay longer to make sure you read every handwritten sign on the walls, shelves, and floor of this Capitol Hill retail stalwart.
[ Capitol Hill ] [ IG @capitolhillbooks ]
Related – used bookstores: Capitol Hill Books, (Capitol Hill – backstory), Second Story (take your Dad!, Dupont), Walls of Books (tons for kids, Park View), Riverby Books (super cozy, Capitol Hill), The Lantern (Georgetown), La Pop (floor-to-ceiling, wrap-around shelves in a basement-level coffee shop – a destination mostly for the pour-overs, but a delightful situation nonetheless. Adams Morgan).
Toy Stores + comic Book Stores
Gumbo Records / DC Treasure
1921 8th Street NW, #110, Washington, DC
Smartly-curated womenswear buys that hold their own as part of the lineup at The Shay (a newly-minted shopping district/luxury apartment complex that's host to national retail like Warby Parker + Kit & Ace); Lettie Gooch features emerging brands with an emphasis on modern S T Y L E + silhouettes.
[ Shaw ] [ IG @lettiegooch ]
Related: Willow Boutique (a sweet little selection of apparel, accessories, and gift-ables, Petworth + Columbia Heights)
All independently-owned bookstores are special places;
[ Anacostia ]
Related – books books books (new, not used): Sankofa Video Books & Cafe, (wow – 20 years strong. Georgia Avenue), Upshur Street Books (the Obamas agree! Petworth), Duende District (books by diverse authors, where all are welcome to be part of the audience; various – catch them at A Creative DC: Brookland in December!), Busboys & Poets, Politics & Prose, and Kramerbooks.
1351 H Street NE, Washington, DC
Sneakers, snapbacks, and an epically curated collection of cult brands (and beyond), the retail component of Maketto serves as the entry to a full, mixed-use concept that includes a cafe ft. Hyattsville's Vigilante Coffee and a restaurant from DC chef/hometown hero Erik Bruner-Yang.
[ H Street ] [ IG @maketto1351)
Maketto, Commonwealth FTTG (sneaker/streetwear game since 2004, Adams Morgan/Dupont), The Museum DC (branded merch in a fun, accessible art gallery setting, Woodridge), , Hugh & Crye Showroom, Homme DC
2104 18th Street NW, Washington, DC
Meeps has been slanging vintage in the District for a good long time (since 1992!), and in 2012 it came under the ownership of the B R A I N T R U S T behind the expertly-curated and aesthetically-minded team at Treasury. The two brands have since merged into one Adams Morgan storefront; the offerings, merchandising, and visuals are true to owner Cathy Chung's vision, and the shop pays homage to its history by maintaining a year-round "Costume Room" (and getting REALLY live around Halloween).
[ Adams Morgan ] [ IG @meepsdc ]
Related: Bartered Threads (vintage, thrift + resale, Brookland), Vintage & Charmed (ddddd, Anacostia)
Miss Pixie's Furnishings & Whatnot
1626 14th Street NW
DC's vintage home goods wonderland: you're equally likely to leave with a pocketful of $1 hotel matchbooks as you are an oil painting by an anonymous artist, a midcentury nightstand, or a 70s folding chair stamped with "New York Ave Presbyterian Church." Holidays are an especially fun time to browse – the kitsch factor goes into overdrive and the shop gets fully decked out in vintage ornaments, garlands, and oversized candy canes.
[ 14th Street ] [ IG @misspixiesdc ]
Related: Goodwood (beautifully merchandised; vintage + new home goods, decor, accessories, and more, U Street Corridor), the Georgetown Flea (antiques + artisans) (every Sunday). See also: For Your Eyes Only DC (an estate-sale, narrow-walk-ways jumble of fine art, fur coats, and furniture), DC Treasure.
1231 Good Hope Road SE, Washington, DC
With an epic IG feed, the IRL shop (located in the Anacostia Arts Center) doesn't disappoint. Apparel/accessories are the focus (textile-lovers, make this a first stop) with a mix of home goods, print pieces, art + books mixed in for good measure. The space is also host to regular events + pop-ups with local brands like Ruby Sampson + Simply Cecily, and has become as much a community gathering space as retail shop.
[ Anacostia ] [ IG @nubianhueman ]
1810 14th Street NW
From under the radar national labels + international cult faves to local brands like DeNada, Redeem has been infiltrating and helping shape the city's style scene for the last decade + with an unmistakable (and not usually associated with DC) aesthetic. The shop visuals alone are worth a visit – we're going with "minimal, Americana-tinged goth," but will let you (and your ensuing Instagram) decide for yourself. Keep an eye out for events: frequent trunk shows with visiting designers and Holiday celebrations bring out DC's cool kids while maintaining an inclusive and accessible vibe. Mens + womenswear.
[ 14th Street ] [ IG @redeemus ]
Related: Hu's Wear + Hu's Shoes (highly curated women's designer apparel + accessories; Georgetown), Whiskey Ginger (menswear, U Street Corridor), Federal (menswear + accessories, 14th Street), Hugh & Crye Showroom (DC-designed).
Salt & Sundry
1309 5th Street NE + 1625 14th Street NW
Goods for good living, and then some: Salt & Sundry is, in short, impeccable. From fair-trade textiles and hand-poured candles to bitters + brines + other small batch goodness, owner Amanda McClements set a new standard for curation and merchandising when opening the flagship Union Market location. Two years later saw the addition of the second shop, with a third (plant-centric!) location impending. Keep an eye out for locally-made, women-owned brands like Gordy's Pickle Jar, Printed Wild, and Mallory Shelter Jewelry, and be sure to follow on social (their visuals are MWAH).
[ Union Market + Logan Circle ]
Related – gift-y and/or design-centric spots: Cherry Blossom Creative, Appointed, Little Leaf , Proper Topper (gifts and home goods and HATS!, Dupont), Urban Dwell (home accessories, candles, cards, etc, Adams Morgan), Hudson & Crane (all things home with gift-y things for miles, Adams Morgan/Dupont), Tabletop (just as it sounds!, Dupont), Eastern Market (a DC tradition, and a mix of imported goods + handmade + vintage) (closed Mondays, with Saturdays/Sundays being your best bet), and Zawadi Arts
Seasonal Markets + Vendor Events
With affordable retail space at a premium in DC, it's not only important to support the brands + biz who HAVE gone brick + mortar, but to dive into the W E A L T H of seasonal markets + pop-ups that showcase the makers, producers, and curators without dedicated retail space. Related: Scroll down for seasonal markets (we update our FIELD GUIDES as often as our bandwidth allows, and are D R I V E N especially by holiday seasons).
1231 Florida Ave NE
Newly opened and in a gorgeous space at 13th & Florida NE, Shopkeeper's is a tight edit of home goods, wears, and print publications (the collection of books and magazines is especially beautiful) from Akae co-founder Seda Nak. The new shop carries over the same warmth and commitment to visuals, with a new, mixed-use element: a communal table fronts a coffee + tea counter, and opening weekend saw a poke bowl on the menu, too. With a second floor (downstairs) and pop-ups already on the calendar, we expect Shopkeeper's to become a NE hub for creative happenings.
[ Florida Ave NE ] [ IG @shopkeepersgallery ]
[ The Yards ]
Take Care Shop
1338 Wisconsin Avenue NW
A minimalist H A V E N in upper Georgetown, selling a curated selection of vegan + eco-friendly skincare/beauty (including paraben + toxin-free nail polish by DC's Mischo Beauty). Winter hours are by appointment, and you can shop a hyphenated curation as part of the Steadfast Supply lineup through the end of Holiday 2016.
[ Georgetown ] [ IG @takecareshopdc ]
Related: Hunny Bunny Boutique (all natural bath & beauty with a cute little backstory, Capitol Hill), Habeebah's Herbals (organic body butters + oils + more, Anacostia)
Toli Moli Burmese Bodega
[ Union Market ]
Related – food stuff, but like, not just food: Odd Provisions, Glen's Garden Market (two locations), Each Peach Market – fresh flowers, ________ (Mount Pleasant), Union Market in general: At any given time the Market (or its adjacent pop-up space, Lab1270) is host to at least a few retail concepts – Salt & Sundry and Follain are permanent fixtures, and past indie inhabitors include Cloud Terre, Niko & Ava, Kaleidos, and Upshur Street Books. Beyond shopping (and LUNCH - the crux of the Market is incredible food + drink), the Union Market District is a regular stomping ground for the creative community in general, and host to art installations, panels, workshops, and more, serving as incubator as much as outlet, Khepra's.
3289 M Street NW
Violet Boutique's Instagram feed says it all: with fun, empowering, and body-positive visuals, the Georgetown boutique is focused on providing an experience that goes beyond the O U T F I T . With four years behind them in Adams Morgan, the shop moved to its new M Street location at the beginning of 2016 and began offering an expanded version of the on-trend + limited edition buys of clothing, shoes, and accessories they've been known for since day one. Be sure to check the much-instagrammed "Wake Up, Kick Ass, Be Kind, Repeat" neon sign (because MANTRA).
[ Georgetown ] [ IG @shopvioletdc ]
Related: LYNN / LOUISA (fashion-y, smart girl apparel + accessories, Georgetown)
A N O T E ( A N D H O W T O S U B M I T S H O P S F O R C O N S I D E R A T I O N )
As with all our FIELD GUIDES, we rely on the nearly half million city perspectives
in the #aCreativeDC feed, and on the knowledge of our editorial team.
Did we miss one of your faves? Drop us a line: info@aCreativeDC.com