Metro Weekly

Rare Form In Rainbow Pop-Up Shop at Whitman-Walker’s Corner

Rare Form focuses on "meaningful, beautiful objects, from vintage finds." Proceeds from the sale benefit the Whitman-Walker Foundation.

Rare Form in Rainbow -- Photo: Courtesy Rare Form
Rare Form in Rainbow — Photo: Courtesy Rare Form

This weekend brings a colorful retail shop pop-up at the northeastern corner of 14th and R Streets NW, where the entrance and lobby of Whitman-Walker’s Elizabeth Taylor Center stood a decade ago.

Now part of the dramatically transformed LIZ development complex and known as The Corner at Whitman-Walker, the event and community gathering space will function all weekend long as a queer or queer-supporting shopper’s delight, especially for those with a penchant for vintage or handmade homegoods, collectibles, accessories, and personal effects — and also houseplants.

Rare Form In Rainbow is a partnership between D.C.-based online vintage retailer and consultancy Rare Form and the Whitman-Walker Foundation, with a portion of proceeds benefiting the latter.

Rare Form focuses on “meaningful, beautiful objects, from vintage finds that highlight provenance and history, to one-of-a-kind pieces made by local artists.”

Run by Michelle Thomas, a former style editor for the Washington Post and Washingtonian, and Rachel Cothran, former communications director for the Corcoran Gallery of Art, the retailer promises fresh merchandise each day of the weekend, drawing from its reserves of mid-century modern Carlo Moretti glassware, handmade ceramic studio pottery, and more.

Rare Form in Rainbow -- Photo: Courtesy Rare Form
Rare Form in Rainbow — Photo: Courtesy Rare Form

The centerpiece of the pop-up is a “completely shoppable” Pride “flag” installation: An array of vintage objects sorted by hue and displayed atop six rectangular tables, each representing a different color of the traditional Pride flag — red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and violet.

The first 25 shoppers to spend $150 or more will receive a Rare Form tote painted by local artist Rose Jaffe. In a subtle nod to Whitman-Walker’s anniversary tagline of “50 Years Rooted in Community,” plants are also a featured part of the mix courtesy of local shop Little Leaf.

The pop-up is intended as a way to honor the space, its legacy, and the vibrancy and resilience of the LGBTQ community overall.

Rare Form in Rainbow -- Photo: Courtesy Rare Form
Rare Form in Rainbow — Photo: Courtesy Rare Form

“We’re thrilled to be working with Rare Form on a project that so deeply and symbolically celebrates the vibrance of the communities we serve,” says Abby Paige Fenton, executive director of the Whitman-Walker Foundation.

Friday, March 10, through Sunday, March 12, from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. each day. The Corner at Whitman-Walker, 1701 14th St. NW. Visit

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