The Market Square Shop in Old Town Alexandria is a tiny jewel box of color and imagination. A favorite among Alexandria insiders, the Market Square Shop engages the senses around that most primal of levels – the home.
Located on King Street just two blocks from the water in the historic Chequire House, the Market Square Shop is filled with beautiful fabrics, traditional home accents, wedding present perfect accessories, lamps, mirrors, and cases of Limoges, Halycon and Battersea boxes, all barely contained in a small, intimate space.
Started in 1955 by Majorie Land, and Joan Leidner Miller, the Market Square Shop was one of the businesses that sparked the redevelopment of lower King Street and Old Town some fifty years ago.
The current proprietor, Bruce Schafer, joined Mrs. Land in 1985 and took over the business in 1995 when Mrs. Land retired. Bruce is also one of my favorite reasons for visiting the shop.
Dry, self-deprecating and disarmingly funny, Bruce is a master of understatement as well as a master of design. He has, seamlessly, maintained the civilized, courteous and gracious atmosphere that was a hallmark of the store from its very inception.
Walking into the Market Square Shop is taking a slight step back in time Bolts of fabric and trim are unfurled one at a time and samples are simply loaned on a signature.
This is not a place to browse for endless hours (it’s not big enough) but if you want informed answers, thoughtful suggestions, personal attention and items selected with a careful eye, then this is the place for you. Oh, don’t bother looking for a Web site though, there isn’t one.
Bruce described his job to me as “translating life into three dimension.” Whether suggesting paint colors and fabric or designing the perfect love seat, Bruce and the magic of the Market Square Shop put into reality what you have only imagined.
The Market Square Shop in Old Town Alexandria is a very special place. I love it and I think you will too