WASHINGTON – Designer Library, a traveling source for textiles, wall coverings, rugs, furniture and lighting for the design trade, is opening its first brick-and-mortar location in the Georgetown neighborhood of Washington D.C.
Talks about opening a physical space had been in the works for Designer Library since its opening in 2019, but its founders, Janine Guerin and Chad Mitchell, spent the past few months trying to decide exactly how to approach a store model, according to a release.
“The industry has been ready to evolve for a long time, and most people seemed to know that the conventional way of doing business was coming to an end,” said Mitchell. “It just wasn’t clear what that new model would be.”
After considering how long it would be until the pandemic was over and how long customers and their team would remain nervous about traveling around between design offices as they did before COVID-19, Mitchell and Guerin said it made sense to open a physical space.
Serving its Mid-Atlantic territory, the Designer Library will operate by appointment only to focus on personalized service that will further the “Galerie-style formula” its founders have worked to create to “pay homage to the Parisian Galeries prominent in St. Germain des Prés.”
Its appointment-only approach also helps create an effective hybrid model of the showroom setting and Designer Library’s traditional road representation, with designers benefiting from the one-on-one service experienced by designers during private travel visits.
The new space was also designed to curate and highlight what is unique about each maker offered by Designer Library, in a “jewelry box” style display, showcasing each one in a space that designers can explore, touch and shop in.