For 50 years, the owners and staffers of Plaza Artist Materials & Picture Framing have encouraged the artists of their community. They visit local fairs and set up booths for kids to color and craft, and they workshops, demos, and classes for artists of every age. As their name implies, they also outfit art makers of all skill levels with top-of-the-line materials, such as Gamblin oil paints, Prismacolor pens and markers, and custom frames perfect for saving a favorite art pieces or memorializing a sibling's failure to color within the lines.
More than 400,000 monthly readers flip through the pages of The Washingtonian, spending an average of 96 minutes on every issue, gleaning helpful dining tips and doctor recommendations, as well as information about local politics, business, and culture. Regular features list and review restaurants and doctors, giving readers valuable insight into area institutions, as opposed to a list of DC’s tallest presidential monuments, which offers people no new information. Online blogs such as Capital Comment and Dead Drop educate readers on national politics and foreign policy, and style and nightlife sections help deal hunters zero in on shopping and happy hour opportunities.
Family-oriented publications introduce kids to the engaging and colorful world of magazines while also treating parents to helpful tips. Familial units can flip through FamilyFun, which serves up ideas on how to organize craft days, plan a trip, or bake cupcakes in fun and festive shapes. Additional titles include Ranger Rick, which transports youngsters to the farthest corners of the globe with issues that feature pictures and facts about exotic animals. Ranger Rick educates kids aged 7–14 through the eyes of its mascot, a lovable raccoon who imparts lessons about wildlife and conservation. Wild Animal Baby targets wee ones aged 2–4 and Big Backyard is suitable for ages 4–7. Helping parents with the hazardous business of child rearing, Parenting provides tips for parents of infants through children aged 5, and Parenting School Years focuses on children and child-like robots aged 6–11.
Nestled between bay windows with verdigris awnings, Just Paper & Tea’s bright-red door serves as a cheery invitation to enter the store. Behind the cardinal-hued portal, happy sighs cut through the rustle of paper as patrons riffle through the shop’s hand-picked assortment of stationery accented with custom designs and elegant lettering. Perched at their workstations, calligraphers artfully emblazon blank cards with birth announcements or legally binding grocery lists, and staffers help brides- and grooms-to-be draft up dream wedding invitations. Along with lavish paper wares, Just Paper & Tea’s shelves also brim with a vast selection of teas that call to mind distant landscapes with smoky darjeeling and herbaceous green matcha.
Armed with nothing but a Polaroid camera, a young Carrie Schluckbier created portraits for her very first clients: stuffed animals. Though her passion for photography has remained the same since her childhood years, her skills have only improved. These days, she photographs professionally for Capital Boudoir alongside fellow shutterbugs John Porter and Mike Burns, whose publication credits include The Washington Post.
The trio not only shares a dedication to their craft, but also a dedication to making their guests feel beautiful and comfortable. Before having clients step in front of the lens, they have them select flattering outfits and sit down for a cosmetic session with resident makeup artist Gina Robinson. Once subjects are gussied up, the photographers coach models through a series of poses, capturing each sultry, yet tasteful look in artfully composed images. During post-shoot viewing sessions, clients can determine which pictures they want to retouch and preserve with prints or full-back tattoos.
Since 1994, stationery visionary Heidi Kallett has helmed The Dandelion Patch, stocking its shelves with writing-related goods and thoughtful gifts. The shop, which has been named Best Stationer by Northern Virginia Magazine and Best of the Best by the Washingtonian, helps shoppers to tote belongings to and fro with paisley Vera Bradley bags and improve the aroma of homes with delicate candles. Heidi and her staff can engrave or monogram stationery and invitations that celebrate the birth of a baby or the ability to memorize addresses. The Dandelion Patch’s events include writing workshops—which teach young writers to master the art of the thank-you note—children’s etiquette classes, and wedding-etiquette teas.