Mapping Georgetown: Opportunity Knocks!


Opportunity Knocks at the Opportunity Shop! For Georgetowners, this neighborhood favorite at 1427 Wisconsin Ave NW, holds a place dear to our hearts. Can anyone walk by the Opportunity Shop – our beloved local consignment store — without stopping in for at least a glance around? At Mapping Georgetown, we received this terrific story about having fresh eyes!

Did you know, according to the “Op Shop’s” website, the store “has been a fixture in the historic Georgetown District of Washington, D.C. for over 85 years.” It’s staffed by “volunteers, some of whom have been lending a hand for over 40 years!” A “high-end consignment store,” the shop “markets and sells antiques, fine jewelry, sterling silver, crystal, decorative accessories and collectibles.”

Its proceeds are used to support the Washington, D.C. Chapter of The Christ Child Society” whose mission is “to meet the material, educational, and emotional needs” of local children.” Purchases from the Opportunity Shop [allow] “the Christ Child Society to help over 10,000 children and families in need in the D.C. area.” (https://opshopdc.com/pages/about-the-op-shop)

Felix Etienne-Edouard Pfeifle’s Mapping Georgetown Story:

 

 

In late 2020, just before the election, I came from Hollywood, CA to Washington, DC to renovate and redecorate a friend’s house.  She said I had to check out the Opportunity Shop, where among other things, she had gotten her wedding dress (vintage 1960’s!)

On my very first visit, staring at me from the back, was this marvelous Biedermeier Sofa, 1820’s Vienna – The “Real Deal” in Biederm! I had studied aesthetics in Vienna and always longed for a serious Biederm piece, but I was there for my friend/client, not myself. Conveniently, the sofa was flanked by a pair of Federal Style Tables, 1860‘s Baltimore, for which any-way, I was looking.  Super – Check!  I bought the tables.

The Beidermeier sofa in Felix Pfeifle’s Mount Pleasant apartment. Photo courtesy Felix Pfeifle.

 

Federal-Style Tables, 1860’s Baltimore. Photo courtesy Felix Pfeifle.

For months I returned to the shop to check on the sofa and, low and behold (!), the price had dropped from several thousand to $400!  Meantime, I had decided to move from CA to here, so I seized the Biederm. And it now proudly sits in my Mount Pleasant Apt.


Felix with his childhood friend, Elizabeth Vella. Photo courtesy of Felix Pfeifle.

Felix Etienne-Edouard Pfeifle is a fifth generation Californian who recently moved to Washington, D.C. from Hollywood, with long interludes since childhood in Vienna, Bern, Paris, New York and San Francisco. He graduated from Berkeley and studied in Vienna [Austria] with a Fulbright Fellowship thereafter, later attending Pratt Institute for interior architecture. He trained as an architect in SF, NY and LA firms for many years before starting his own inter-disciplinary firm, The Felix Effect, which now concentrates on landscape design and interior design that revolves around art curating. Everything about the staggering humidity of D.C. is a delight to Felix, but especially the array of francophone Uber drivers (so many!) and the seemingly endless bounty of architectural and artistic treasures — a surprise in every direction.

Felix decided to move here after beginning a year-long renovation (architectural and decorative) of the Kent neighborhood house of his childhood friend, Elizabeth Vella (pictured above with Felix), a partner at Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman.

—-

Felix – Thank you for sharing and congratulations on your finds at the Opportunity Shop. We are honored and grateful with this ‘opportunity’ to tell your story!

To learn more about the Mapping Georgetown project see https://georgetowner.com/articles/2021/07/19/marilyn-butlers-vision-for-mapping-georgetown/.

To submit your Georgetown recollections to Mapping Georgetown go to www.mappinggeorgetown.com  or visit the Georgetown Public Library to pick up a physical map-story form to fill out.

Marilyn Butler can be reached at: marilyn.butler@gmail.com.

 

 

tags

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.