For more than two decades, Alexandria Art and Framing's knowledgeable staffers have meticulously enveloped and conserved images with expert framing services that transform personal memorabilia into elegant artwork. Elegant rectangles line store walls in an array of shapes, colors, and styles—including gold frames with antique appearances and stained wood etched with ornate motifs. Alexandria Art and Framing's artisan picture enhancers put their passion into practice to beautify each image with mat boards, mouldings (from such brands as Larson-Juhl and Roma Moulding), and box frames, a specialty of the frame shop. From valuable baseball cards to blue ribbons from hot-dog-eating contests to poster-size family portraits, any piece of artwork can be skillfully encased before proudly displayed.
One of Maryland's top mattress retailers, Casa Furniture, Inc. has spent a decade perfecting a business model that allows for a well-stocked inventory of high-quality furniture at low prices. The masterminds behind the furniture emporium scour the world for well-crafted furnishings for the living, dining, and bedrooms, and arrange to directly import the best pieces they discover on the back of their highly trained, ginormous eagle. Additionally, two factories produce furniture exclusively for the store, driving costs down further. Once customers select their new piece, Casa schedules a prompt delivery time to which its professional staff takes pride in adhering.
Outfitting apertures since 1948, District Shade Shop is a full service Hunter Douglas priority dealer of fine window coverings. Adorn apertures with a Hunter Douglas 36"x36" set of 2-inch wooden venetian blinds ($138) or a 36"x36" set of 3/4-inch Applause pleated honeycomb window treatments ($165). Picture windows can also be pampered with a 36"x60" set of 1-inch aluminum mini-blinds ($115).
Independently owned and operated by DC natives Erin Mara and Henriette Fourcade, the 2,500-square-foot loft-like space at homebody is filled with contemporary furnishings and home products. Quaff eco-conscious colas from a reusable Eco Can drinking bottle, with a biodegradable and BPA-free body that is safe for use in microwaves, dishwashers, and decommissioned Mars rovers ($14.50). Square meals can be squirreled away inside a Box Appetit lunch box ($24.95), which can be, in turn, slipped into a specially designed bag ($7.95). And inside the shop, eyeballs will get a chuckle from quirky doorstops shaped like leaves ($10 each), high-heeled shoes ($9 each), and members of the Partridge family. The store combines designs from renowned and up-and-coming designers, and benefits from the owners' combined 40 years of experience. Though not included in today's Groupon, homebody also adorns abodes with interior-design services.
Eastern Market Tango introduces locals to the art of tango with group dance parties and lessons conducted by a pair of in-house instructors. Jake Spatz combines his love for dance and DJ'ing in his nightly activities at Eastern Market, and Maximilliano Gluzman brings the skills he learned studying tango with renowned Argentine dancers and teaching at La Academia in Buenos Aires. Their tango lessons focus on correct posture, leading, and following to help couples communicate through body language and respectfully traverse the dance floor. They also work on improvisation, to help couples find enjoyable ways to dance together in crowded clubs or ATM vestibules where space may be limited.
During milongas—dynamic tango dance parties—advanced and beginning students strut their sultry skills on the dance floor until the wee hours. Three-tiered plates of fresh fruit and dark chocolate beckon resting dancers, as pairs work their way across the studio’s spacious hardwood floors.
Miss Pixie’s Furnishings & What Not keeps customers coming back with their “blast from the past” apparel and furnishings. Large windows draw customers into the granite floored shop with neon pink walls and unusual chandeliers. The massive vintage store on 14th Street carries everything from old photographs and lunch boxes from the 1950s to vintage mirrors and old lamps to old-school rotary phones, and that’s only the beginning. Miss Pixie’s also has Matchbox cars, old beer glasses and used books and records. Aside from these exercises in knick-knack nostalgia, the store is also a home decorator’s dream. Between the vintage furniture and the unexampled artwork, there’s enough funk here to furnish the most whimsical crib.