Miss Pixie’s: Redesigning D.C. for Nearly Two Decades

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Miss Pixie’s: Redesigning D.C. for Nearly Two Decades

Owner of Miss Pixie's, Tagg Magazine

Pixie Windsor (Photo by Denis Largeron)

Are you looking to refurnish your home? Perhaps just change things up a little around the house? Miss Pixie’s Furnishings & Whatnot on 14th Street NW, in D.C., has what you’re looking for. And, if they don’t today, then they will tomorrow.

Pixie Windsor has owned Miss Pixie’s for the past 18 years. The shop was originally in Adam’s Morgan, then in Dupont. It’s been at the 14th Street location since 2008. This year, Windsor opened a new store in Rehoboth Beach, DE, and offers free shipping between the two stores. With a love of design and an eye for the unique, her goal is to move items as quickly as possible and make sure that from one week to the next, you will never run out of goodies to sort through.

Winsdor’s love of design has always been a part of her. “I grew up on a dairy farm out in the middle of nowhere. My mom, God rest her soul, had not the greatest taste, but my great aunt spent most of her life traveling and buying things at auctions,” explains Windsor. “She traveled a lot, and I was completely fascinated by her house. That’s where I spent a lot of my time in the summer. I was hugely influenced by that.”

With her background in art history and studio art, Windsor always had an eye for design. As a young child, she painted her furniture and her walls. Though her mom was understandably shocked, Windsor’s redecorating was met with positive feedback.

Miss Pixie’s has always stayed true to that artistic spirit. The store has even hosted weddings and rehearsal dinners, while giving back to the community.

“Almost everyone who works for me is an artist in some way. And, I do art exhibits for them about every three or four months,” notes Windsor.

Pixie Windsor in her Miss Pixie's store

Photo by Denis Largeron

On top of that, the store loves to decorate its large front window with an assortment of eye-catching, colorful displays. From the pink Christmas trees and lights during the holidays to an Easter display made out of thousands of Peeps, the front window is sure to grab your attention.

One of the best parts of the store is its constant change of scenery. Miss Pixie’s does not buy from individual sellers. Instead, every week, Windsor takes a team to auctions all over the DMV area. Every Wednesday, the items are bought, loaded onto and unloaded from the truck, priced affordably, immediately put on display, and added to the website.

“It’s not a museum; I want everything to change every week,” declares Windsor.

The store tries its best to keep the website as up to date as possible. Sometimes, on busier days, they are updating it with each sale. However, if you see something you like, then you can always call ahead and ask them to save it. And, no worries about whether she will know which item you are trying to describe. Windsor remembers each piece of furniture she buys—and not just the current ones.

For instance, while vacationing in Rehoboth, Windsor rented a house, recognized a piece of furniture, and told her friends, “That bench is from my store!” To which they replied, “Oh my god. You think everything is from your store.” Then, Windsor talked to the owner of the house, and sure enough, she was right.

Windsor tries to stock Miss Pixie’s with anything you would need for your house. They carry everything from sofas and great dressers to unique glassware, lamps, and even original art. “I like to buy things that are good, are functional, and don’t need any work. I’ve found out, living in D.C., nobody has time for a project.”

Another plus of auctions is that if you cannot find what you are looking for at Miss Pixie’s, she will likely know who else has what you need. “When I started going to the auctions, it became my parallel universe,” says Windsor. “We all became really good friends. When someone would come in and ask me for an early 1900s stepback cabinet, I could say that I did not have one, but I know that GoodWood bought one this week.”

She adds, “We all just decided to refer each other. Why not work together? Keep people in the loop. There’s no need to do otherwise, as long as you’re making the customer happy.”

Working together is actually the way that Windsor started her business, back in 1997. While working in the restaurant industry after moving to D.C., she would regularly go to Madam Adam, an old furniture store in Adam’s Morgan. She would often daydream about what she could do with the space and made friends with the owner.

Then, one day, he decided to leave the business and handed over the reins. “He gave me his landlord’s name. He told me the auctions I should go to. He told me what hours I should go. He basically handed me his business.” And, Miss Pixie’s has been thriving ever since. She is always seeing new faces, but many of her customers are either through referrals, or they have been with her since the original store.

If you are looking to add new life to your humble abode, or have just been inspired to, Windsor has a few tips. “One of the easiest ways to change it up is to paint the walls. I always start with that. But also, just change out the artwork sometimes,” she suggests.

Another guideline concerns dresser drawers, especially those that become stuck. “That’s my big pet peeve,” she admits. “If your drawers are hard to open or close, it stresses you out every time you do it. Have things in your house that don’t stress you out.”

The store also makes shopping for new pieces incredibly easy with their 24-hour hold. “They can take the piece home and see if it works, and they have 24 hours to bring it back.” She and all of the other employees are also there to offer great advice or a fresh eye for your new look.

You can visit Miss Pixie’s in person, access the store online at www.misspixies.com, or find them on Facebook. And, by joining the mailing list, you’ll learn about monthly events and promotions, while staying up to date on the new furnishings!

 

Miss Pixie's in Washington, DC

Photo by Denis Largeron

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