Home & Style

Great Home Design: Modern Flair

Looking to redecorate? These local furniture stores have forward-thinking aesthetics.

>> This article is an excerpt from Where Did You Get That?, a home design guide printed in the August 2010 edition of The Washingtonian.  To view 40 more places to get distinctive furnishings, click here.  


Anora Home. 5252 Wisconsin Ave., NW; 202-363-3033. Double-duty pieces are popular at this modern-furnishings store, from a dining table with built-in extensions to sectional sofas with built-in end tables. Also notable are the store’s distinctive sliding doors, which make grand entrances out of doorways.

Homebody. 715 Eighth St., SE; 202-544-8445. This contemporary shop on Capitol Hill is a gallery of sorts for local craftspeople and designers to sell furniture, lighting, art, and tabletop accessories. The owners hold an event each month to exhibit the work of a local artist.

Modernicus. 8101 Richmond Hwy., Alexandria; 703-887-0895. What started in 2006 as a “curated collection” of midcentury furniture now includes new upholstery and refinishing. The store also partners with local cabinetmakers and metalworkers to build what customers can’t find in the existing collection.

Sixteen Fifty Nine. 1659 Wisconsin Ave., NW; 202-333-1480. Owner Mike Johnson says the TV series Mad Men has fueled an interest in sleek ’60s furnishings. He’s got all the pieces from that era—many in materials such as rosewood and black walnut that aren’t used anymore.

Theodores. 2233 Wisconsin Ave., NW; 202-333-2300. The store has been a staple in the modern-design community for more than 40 years, yet it doesn’t grow dated because Janice Kanter, Theodore’s daughter, is always trying to stay ahead of the curve on trends, buying one-of-a-kind items and working with small factories that can customize lines.

Vastu. 1829 14th St., NW; 202-234-8344. You can get the store’s contemporary sofas in any length and choose wood or metal legs on the frames. The Play collection offers wood-frame cabinetry with lacquered doors and drawers in many colors. Vastu also regularly exhibits work by new artists.

Well Built. 1541 14th St., NW; 202-299-0597. Owner Ann Blackwell features the modern, “green,” handmade work of 12 designers and eight lines. Part of her profits go to a foundation she created to promote green-product education for designers and tradespeople.

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