Cynthia Pepper Reed, Noted Interior Designer and Georgetown Shop Owner (1948-2021)
By May 20, 2021 4 1758•
Cynthia Pepper Reed died peacefully surrounded by family and friends on May 13, after a valiant fight against cancer.
Born in Atlanta, Georgia on June 7, 1948 to Virginia “Jennie” Pepper Reed and William “Bill” Marcus Reed, she was raised in Smyrna, Georgia and Vinings, Georgia. She graduated from The Lovett School in Atlanta in 1966. She attended the University of Georgia, where she was a member of Tri Delta Sorority and majored in Interior Design.
Upon graduation in 1970, she accepted a position in Washington, D.C, as in-house interior designer for the department store chain Woodward & Lothrop. During her several years at “Woodies” she developed a loyal following of clients, most of whom became friends, and then branched out and opened her own firm of Cynthia P. Reed, Ltd. in Georgetown, where she operated for decades.
Her award-winning work won her national and international recognition in magazines like Architectural Digest and Southern Living. Her client base included elite Washingtonians in politics and the arts. She did work for clients all over the world, including New York, Miami, Paris, London, China and Bahrain.
She moved her operations to Coral Gables, Florida, in the early 2000s where she also owned an art gallery. She split her time between Florida and D.C., keeping residences in both locations. She also owned a home in Atlanta during this time, but her clients and friends in D.C., prevailed upon her to move back to D.C as her permanent home.
Even through her final illness, she continued to work right up to the end, finishing her last major project in West Palm Beach, Florida and moving back permanently to D.C. a few weeks before her death.
Called Cyn by her close friends, and Aunt Cyn by her nieces and nephews, she was preceded in death by both her mother and father. She is survived by her brother, Bruce Reed, his wife Katherine, and his two daughters, Laura Reed Thompson (Cecil Thompson), and Paula Reed Yancey (Chas); her brother Mark Reed, his wife Michelle, and their two sons, Lew Reed, and Bill Reed (Christa), and their daughter Henley Reed, her great niece.
Cyn had no children of her own but made it clear that her nieces and nephews were her de facto children, whom she loved completely. The family will be holding private services in her memory. She will be cremated and her ashes will be handled as per her private wishes.