In which Pies & Puggles drives to Richmond to buy donuts. Ahem.
As pretty much everyone I know can attest, my favorite blog is Young House Love. John and Sherry Petersik have such a warm and approachable writing style and their DIY instructions are always easy to follow. They also happen to live in Richmond, Virginia, which is only an hour and a half drive from me.
I’ve been working really hard lately so yesterday I decided to take a fun field trip to see some of my favorite bloggers’ favorite DIY and home decor destinations. Oh, and to eat donuts. They talk about these places all the time on the blog and always make them sound fabulous!
I started with a trip to Dixie Donuts. This place makes small cake donuts in extra yummy flavors like “Aztec” with a spicy cinnamon chocolate donut, chocolate frosting and pepitas on top and “Maple Coffee” which pretty much tastes just like it sounds. They were divine, of course.
I bought a dozen. I ate four. The rest went with Doug to work today so I can’t eat any more. I now resolve not to eat another donut until the next time we’re in Richmond. Hmm… maybe I should visit again next week…
The next stop was the Shades of Light Decorating Outlet. Shades of Light is the local Richmond company that makes the Young House Love lighting collection. It’s a line of great fixtures and other decor designed by John and Sherry and all priced at $99 and under. I saw several of their lamp shades in the outlet, but here I was after something a little different for the office makeover.
I got a great deal on the small shade I bought: $5 because it’s dented, but that doesn’t matter because I’m going to re-cover it anyway. I also bought a kit that converts a standard shade into a ceiling mounted fixture. It retails on the Shades of Light website for $50, but the cord was short so mine was half price. Since I’ll need to further shorten the cord anyway, that was no problem for me!
Then I headed back downtown to U-Fab, a discount fabric store that features many contemporary upholstery fabrics at very reasonable prices, which I just loved. In fact, I loved it so much, I forgot to take pictures inside!
I’ve been so disappointed with the selection of fabrics at local Northern Virginia shops like Joann’s and G Street. They have many super traditional fabrics like toile and damask and many, many fewer modern fabrics like ikats and geometrics. At U-Fab, they had a good mix of fabrics, but I was impressed at how beautifully organized it was and how many cool fabrics they had. I really wish I had taken pictures. Ugh! (There’s a little snapshot here in this YHL post.) I would love to get U-Fab up here. Though when I complained about the sad lack of good fabric stores up this way to one of the salespeople, she lamented their lack of an IKEA in Richmond. Since it only takes me about 20 minutes to get to IKEA, I guess fair’s fair.
Finally, I stopped at the actual Shades of Light retail store. My objective was to take a look at the lighting fixture I intended to buy online for the dining room. They didn’t have the exact one I wanted to see in the store, but they had a similar one so I was happy. The Young House Love fixtures have been so popular that they are out of stock, but since YHL posted a Shades of Light coupon code today, I was pleased to order the fixture I wanted with a 10% discount.
Happy shades at Shades of Light.
I had a really great time in Richmond today. The traffic was pretty much non-existent, which was a huge surprise for me coming from Fairfax County. So even though I didn’t plan my stops very efficiently, I was still safe at home within seven hours of when I left. All the staff people at Dixie Donuts, Decorating Outlet, U-Fab and Shades of Light were extremely helpful, friendly and design savvy. Seriously. Every single person I had the opportunity to interact with. Everyone. At Decorating Outlet, a customer even stopped what she was doing to help me look through their fabric remnant bin. And at Shades of Light, someone offered to make me a salad! Talk about a friendly town!