Seth Godin has revolutionized marketing with his innovative approach to communication and community. He is the founder of Squidoo, a former vice president of direct marketing for Yahoo!, and currently authors one of the most popular marketing blogs in the world. Godin's books—many of them best-sellers—have done more for marketing than Genghis Khan did for nomad marketing. The most recent of Godin's books, Linchpin, explores how employees can make themselves indispensable to their company by tackling tasks with the same sort of emotional commitment that an artist brings to his or her work.
On the showroom floor at Bensons Jewelers, display cases sparkle with diamonds, necklaces, watches, and charms from jewelry makers such as Reed & Barton, Elle, and Breuning. Rings missing gemstones or cursed tiaras in need of de-hexing can turn to the full service repair shop, where a jeweler with 20 years of experience fixes and restores baubles, backing all work with a six-month guarantee.
Make no mistake: the Tiny Jewel Box shop is exactly as advertised. This deceptively-spacious jewelry retailer, watch repairer and general home decorator builds out into a much larger facility than first realized. Although each floor has a small footprint, like a jewelry box with fold-out compartments, the multi-story shop stores more than you might think. On the first floor, one can easily be bedazzled by the diamonds and high-end jewelry adorning the showcases. Then, take the elevator up to the other floors to find goodies like glassware, frames, paperweights and home accessories, many sporting price tags under $50. Also for sale here: luggage, cufflinks, pens and, of course, jewel boxes. The Tiny Jewel Box is DC’s only authorized Rolex repair shop, and the store also has an in-house custom jewelry designer.
I. Gorman Jewelers is an all-around jewelry store, but there’s little doubt that the ring is the main thing here. Display counters are filled with wedding bands and engagement rings, waiting to be snatched up for that perfect moment. But you don’t have to be getting hitched to enjoy shopping at this high-end jeweler; I. Gorman stocks cutting-edge designer pieces that go far beyond the typical band, including other classic and contemporary ring looks and various bangles and baubles. Men can find a wide selection of sharp and stylish cufflinks, bracelets and rings themselves. The store is recognized for its outstanding service, which include repairing any item purchased at the store for free, and they only use ethically-sourced diamonds and gemstones.
Before Comfort One Shoes' sole experts are allowed to fit a single shoe to a customer's foot, they must graduate from Comfort One University and undergo a mentorship process. It's only then that they can help shoppers find their desired footwear, whether it be lace-up Ziera boots, On running shoes with CloudTec technology, or Thierry Rabotin shoes, handmade without uncomfortable, rigid components. Alongside men's and women's footwear, the shop stocks an assortment of bags and accessories such as colorful iPhone cases from Triple C Designs that protect phone exteriors and conceal scratches from the last time you transformed into a werewolf.
Comfort One Shoes also seeks to better the world through creative philanthropic efforts, such as collecting 25,000 shoes for those without and offering their employees half their pay and time off to volunteer in the community. Perhaps such initiatives are part of the reason Comfort One Shoes earned the National Shoe Retailers Association’s Retailer of the Year Award in 2011.
“Made in USA” is the mantra of this popular Los Angeles-based clothing chain specializing in casual and fashionable basics. The petite Georgetown outpost of this national retailer pops with color, from the leggy mannequins in a multitude of tights hanging against a back wall to the sweaters, t-shirts and dailywear items that crowd the main walkway. You can find a range of jeans for him and her, colorful accessories and workout outfits, and a wide selection of soft, unadorned clothing for local college kids, nearby teenagers and anyone looking to dress a little hipper. You can also find sleepwear, lingerie, accessories like belts and hats, a wide selection of leggings, and, as befits a store located near a college campus, a full supply of backpacks.