Saturday, August 30, 2014

Shopping DC: Mid-Century Furniture

I'm not quite sure where this week went, but here were are at the holiday weekend already!  Blake is out golfing (I opted out of that one...), I'm lounging around the house reading and writing, and we've got fun plans for the evening that include furniture/building materials shopping (here and here) and eating at Busboys and Poets, one of our favorite local places.

So in honor of what is probably my favorite furniture store in the DC area, today's post is about where to find the best mid-century furniture (best being fact. not opinion ;))

1.  Peg Leg Vintage
Peg Leg is located in College Park, MD, just inside the beltway.  It's along Baltimore Avenue, only a couple miles from IKEA, so anytime I have to go to IKEA, I reward myself with a trip to Peg Leg afterward.  It's a great bribe.

The couple that owns the shop are just the coolest people. Every time I go in, I end up talking furniture with them for 45 minutes, and wishing I could stay longer.  Oh boy. I'm that customer.  They'll answer any questions you have about the pieces and even give you ideas for how to style it.  They'll encourage you to lounge on a chair you're eyeing - just to make sure it meets your comfort needs - and will even move other furniture around so you can get the full effect of putting your feet out on the ottoman while completely reclined in a Mister chair.  Do I sound like I speak from experience?

It's not a huge store, but their inventory is constantly changing.  Also, the owners said they always have 10-15 storage units packed full with other furniture, so if you're looking for something specific, let them know and they'll search for it for you.  Last time I was in they mentioned that they were on the lookout for a warehouse space so that they could display all their furniture at once for monthly warehouse sales.  I'm hoping that happens soon.

One of my favorite things about Peg Leg is that they don't spend time re-doing the furniture.  They just buy good stuff.  That way, they don't charge you an arm and a (peg) leg for anything.  I've been pleasantly surprised about how good the prices are.  I know it's off the beaten path, but I think their location also allows them to price things fairly.

2.  Modern Mobler
If you want to see some absolutely gorgeous restored mid century furniture, look no further than Modern Mobler.  They have locations on Georgia Avenue in NW Washington DC and in Kensington, MD along antique row.

Unlike Peg Leg Vintage, Modern Mobler's prices are not low, but I would venture to say that they're fair.  Each piece they display has been expertly restored to look like new.  They have a full-time restorationist employed for their two stores and you can tell that he puts love and attention into each piece.

So, you might not be able to go in and pick up a few items on a whim, but you'll be blown away by the eye candy.  The employees also know a ton about the furniture and are happy to answer questions.  It's almost a museum experience.

3.  Miss Pixie's
Miss Pixie's is located on 14th Street in a newly revitalized area of DC.  It's not strictly mid-century, so you'll probably see it pop up on other lists, but it usually has some great mid-century pieces.

Some pros to Miss Pixie's:  It's a large space and they have a great revolving inventory of fun pieces.  It's also pretty moderately priced.
Some cons to Miss Pixie's:  It's right in the heart of hipster-ville and things that are "fairly priced" maybe listed a bit higher than they otherwise would be.  That said, it is great fun to people-watch in this area and I love over-hearing people in the store talking about what they're going to do with a particular piece.  Lots of great ideas!

After you're done getting lost in Miss Pixie's, there are a ton of other great furniture stores in the area to busy yourself in for the rest of the day.  And if you need a break from all the inspiration?  I recommend treating yourself to a Peanut Butter Bacon Burger and a milkshake (while taking in whatever black and white film they're showing on the wall) at the new 14th Street Ted's Bulletin location.


  1. we used to browse miss pixies when we lived on 16th. miss that city and our favorite peeps.

    1. I always forget that you guys lived downtown! I'm jealous of your proximity to Miss Pixies :)