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When Racked checked in over the summer with Yvette Freeman, owner of U Street furniture store Foundry, Freeman was plotting a move to a larger location on U Street. Yesterday, Freeman revealed that Foundry would make the jump to the H Street NE neighborhood instead. The new Foundry is slated to open November 15 in a historic 4,000-square-foot carriage house at 819 11th Street, NE in Atlas Court Alley.
So what changed? "The options were few and far between" in the U Street and 14th Street area, Freeman told Racked. Freeman was also battling flooding problems in her current U Street shop. So when she stumbled upon the carriage house with room for a workshop and retail space, including space for a new vintage clothing section called Foundry Threads, Freeman was smitten. And the brick building even relates to her brand. "It looks like a foundry," Freeman said.
The news of the move stirred up nearly 100 comments on PoPville, with complaints that H Street NE is too far removed and concerns that retail can survive there. While Freeman said she's sad to leave U Street, she's excited about the community support on H Street and thinks the vibe of the neighborhood feels similar to U and 14th Streets a few years back.
"I'm going to be sad that some of the people that frequent the store don't want to leave the neighborhood to see us on H Street, but at the same time, there are loads of people on H Street to welcome us," she said. "I have lived all over D.C. I think when you are in an urban environment, you can get out."
"I'm not going to Richmond, I'm just going to the other side of town," she said.
Freeman's looking forward to having everything she's working on under one roof for the first time. The new shop has room for bigger furniture, the menswear-focused Foundry Threads (with a few selections for women), and Freeman's workshop, where customers can see furniture in progress. Expect the same type of reclaimed vintage pieces. In fact, Freeman has recently salvaged a vintage apothecary in Delaware, and she's bringing 30 apothecary cabinets and enamel trays to the new H Street location.
And because she wants to make the move easier, between now and November 15, all in-store inventory at Foundry's U Street location will be on sale for 50 percent off. "This is the time to get a really great deal," Freeman says. "It's the biggest sale I've ever done."
· Foundry Home Furnishings Moving from U Street to H Street [PoPville]
· Foundry Home Furnishings prepares for move to H Street NE [WBJ]
· Foundry by Freeman [Official Site]