Tina Goes Gaga For Nana


Ed. note: Tina has expanded her coverage from Mt. P to also include U Street. Don’t worry, Mt. P shall not be forsaken, there will simply be a mix.

Nana is located at 1528 U Street – upstairs from Millennium (a PoP fave). I stopped in the other night and gave my usual, “So, I write for this blog…” speech, and was super excited to find out that not only had the store manager heard of it, but also, it was one of her favorite DC websites, and she had actually read and remembered MY posts!! Fabulous!

Anyhow, Nana is one of my favorite clothing shops in DC. They have been open for five years, and were located just down the street until about three years ago when they moved into their current location. Sarah had a long history in retail, but she started with Nana as a customer and developed a relationship with Jackie Flanagan – the store owner. When Jackie had a family, she needed some help and brought Sarah on board as a manager.


Incidentally, this is also one of the things that Sarah mentioned she likes the best about working at Nana. It’s very much a neighborhood shop and it’s not uncommon for the staff to develop friendly relationships with customers. Their goal is to make the store accessible and welcoming for everyone. And their prime location surely doesn’t hurt. In the past three years Sarah’s seen U Street grow into a destination, where people will spend the whole day. This is great for the neighborhood, and also for business, as almost daily people are stopping into Nana for the first time.

Nana is always full of really cute and original items. Almost everything you’ll find comes from an independent designer, and a lot of their inventory comes from Canada. There are some great fashions to be found in our neighbor to the north, and Jackie and Sarah come across a lot of them at the many trade shows they attend. There is also a small (but good) selection of vintage attire in the back room.


My one gripe about Nana is that fashion doesn’t always come cheap here. Nana’s prices are sometimes a little high for this non-profit girl, but they frequently have good sales including the everything-in-the-store-is-50%-off sale, which happens a couple times a year to clean out seasonal inventory. I happened to stumble into the most recent sale just a few weeks ago and scored a fabulous skirt that I had been coveting but couldn’t afford at full price!


11 Comment

  • I can not say enough good things about Nana – they will always have my business, and no other local store makes you feel so welcome.

  • With just a few of my revisions, IN CAPS, a post from earlier…

    “WOMEN’S CLOTHING and RETAIL STORES and whatever kind of STORES only cater to a small demographic in the neighborhood and do nothing to improve the neighborhood as a whole. Instead it’s one more space that’s either BY GENDER or culturally off limits to the majority of the community. It’s a bad idea. Just because some people would LOVE a WOMENS FASHION STORE, doesn’t make it a good fit. We have lots and lots of places to BUY CLOTHING and SHOP in Columbia Heights, we have very few places that cater to everyone else. I’ve looked into all the available spaces on 11th Street and they are priced to exclude anyone without serious amounts of capital or collateral already stowed away. That’s why you see local ENTREPRENEURS snatching up spots, they’re the few that can afford it. It’s a shame. Greed wins over the community again.”

  • JinDC…. huh? i am confused… so do you also hate retail stores that have been on U street for years and years and years? are they all bad too?

    i think options for retail and dining no matter what help a community. just because you happen to sell something doesnt mean you don’t get involved in community service… charity.. donations etc.


  • Nana has a history of supporting the neighborhood, carrying local designers and jewelry artists work… not to mention, host benefit nights where a percentage of the sales go to local nonprofits. Nana is setting the perfect example of how you can succeed as a small business while giving back.

    JnDC… seems your real issue is with the landlords that keep those prices high… Nana was in a dark basement for a few years getting things going before moving to a more prime second floor location.

  • Ha, No. That was entirely sarcastic. Feel free to read my other posts. I just thought it might illustrate the silliness of the idea that each new business must somehow be there to serve all aspects of every niche in a neighborhood… I welcome business in all its forms. We as the individuals get to patronize whom we choose to, and thats how a free society works. Certainly meant no disrespect to NANA or Tina’s coverage of it, looks like a great store. I just don’t happen to shop for much womens clothing being a dude and all…

  • Oops, my Sarcasm was apparently not delivered well. My bad… That was DCDireWolf’s quote that I had modified. More power to NANA and all those who run great businesses and even better if they are able to contribute to the community also! Kudos.

  • JnDC, so it was saracasm. Thankfully, because I didn’t understand what culturally off-limits to the majority of the community meant. And Target isn’t culturally off limits to a certain over-cool type, that wouldn’t be caught dead in a Walmart?

  • Long live Nana, and long live neighborhood niche retail.

    Plus, Jackie and her husband are really cool.

  • Nana has long been my favorite shop in DC. It is definitely expensive, so I get maybe two or three fabulous pieces a year there.

    As for JnDC, quoting DCDireWolf when speaking about Nana doesn’t really help, as many have come to realize DCDW will go on and on about the evils of just about anyone as long as it disagrees with the mainstream of the conversation. For goodness sake, DCDW even defended the toenail clippings on the metro! Methinks I spot a troll.

  • sarcasm is so hard on the internets…. 😉

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