Since first opening its doors in 2014, Nomad Yard Collectiv—a vintage and antique store that’s located on New York Avenue near Union Market in Northeast—has garnered media attention, whether for its excellent selection of vintage clothing, according to Washington City Paper, or for the inspirational style of its curator and owner, Desirée Venn Frederic, who Washingtonian highlighted in its annual Style Setters listing.
Now, Venn Frederic has our attention as she rethinks how square footage is used within the District. After a soft opening on February 12, Venn Frederic is planning a grand opening on March 31 for the new Nomad Yard retail space on 14th Street. Rather than opening a new stand-alone store, this retail space will reside within Mulebone, a Southern eatery by Busboys and Poets’ Andy Shallal. Simultaneously, Venn Frederic is planning a relaunch of her original Nomad Yard location, adding in a retail book store and a co-working space.
The addition of a second Nomad Yard location and her renovation of the first is just the beginning of Venn Frederic’s vision for her business.
“From the onset, I believed Nomad had the potential and the capacity to be a global company and to expand to different parts of the country and the world, so that has always been the intention,” she says, going on to explain that the new location is not a “pop-up” within Mulebone, but rather, a joint venture. “[It’s] an opportunity for us to take expand our aesthetic and our mission into the 14th Street corridor.”
Venn Frederic says Nomad Yard will start with about 800 square feet of retail space–but the relationship between retail and restaurant will be “fluid,” allowing that number to shift–within Mulebone, marketing the same aesthetic of vintage apparel, local artwork, and antique home goods as are sold in the Northeast location. The Mulebone location will bring in some new brands for the store as well, including Double RL—the high-end, vintage Americana-inspired Ralph Lauren line—along with wares from Dr. K’s, a now-shuttered U Street vintage store, and Search & Rescue, among others.
Meanwhile, Nomad Yard’s much larger storefront in Northeast will undergo some major changes before its March 31 relaunch. Rather than using the full space for retail, Venn Frederic is renovating the storefront to allow other businesses to take up residence within her space.
“We have a generous amount of space at 411 [New York Ave., NE]—we have 3,500 square feet of space,” says Venn Frederic. “We’re actually condensing the [vintage retail] and bringing in a retail bookstore as well as a co-working space—making space for other people and other business models and giving people in the community the ability to engage in our space more frequently.”
The leasing of the space was motivated by what Venn Frederic views as a great need in the District for more room for those who don’t work out of typical office buildings.
“[Space is] a need–an ever-present need—for people in the District who don’t have traditional work schedules,” she says.
The first addition to Nomad Yard’s Northeast storefront will be Chloe, a book store owned by Jade Foster, that will bring “books, literary events, and everyday magic” to the space. For the second addition—the co-working space—Venn Frederic says she is in talks with Locale Workspace, which currently resides at 52 O Street Studios. Venn Frederic’s hope is to help incubate companies in her spacious Northeast storefront–providing other small businesses the room they need to grow.
Nomad Yard Collectiv is located at 411 New York Ave., NE and 2121 14th St., NW.