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Faire Cafe enlists designer Dallas Shaw for a makeover

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Fran Favoroso
Fran Favoroso
Fran Favoroso is a full-time program manager and part-time food blogger. Fran enjoys cooking, reading, traveling and trying new restaurants. She resides in Wilmington with her husband and two dogs, Lyla and Addie.

Designer Dallas Shaw

Although dining at a cafe with friends may feel like a distant memory, Delaware restaurants have started to slowly welcome guests again. 

While some of us have turned to baking bread or home projects to stay occupied, for fashion illustrator and designer Dallas Shaw that meant redesigning a restaurant.

Shaw’s Instagram page takes followers on a fantasy ride of original fashion illustrations, her cute dog, exciting partnerships and unique home decor — her fashion illustrations recently featured as part of a digital cover series of Harper’s Bazaar India. 

 

Faire Cafe located on 9th Street in Wilmington has enlisted Shaw to redesign and rebrand their entire existing space. Her first joint venture with the group of course being the ultra-successful pop-up holiday bar, Blitzen.

Related: Opening night at Blitzen, Delaware’s first holiday pop-up bar

Dallas Shaw designed the holiday pop-up bar Blitzen, which opened last November in Wilmington

That concept was put together in only a few weeks and remained packed until the doors closed for the season. It was also filled with dreamy details handpicked by Shaw.

While they are rebranding the cafe, many fan-favorite details will remain.

What’s changing most is that it will no longer be a market but instead a true coffee shop and café. I want the space to invite you in to stay a while. Bring a laptop and grab a drink. Invite nearby co-workers to join you for lunch,” said Shaw.

 

“We learned at Blitzen that there are tons of cool people around with unique jobs, but no real place to feel at home for a coffee and a cocktail. I think the new Faire will be all of those things. I hope that the nearby tenants will realize we created this space just for them. Welcome home. Stay awhile.”

However, the outside of the building is about to look very different. Shaw mentioned to “keep a close eye out for something very cool in July.”

Faire Market and Cafe is located at 216 W. 9th St. in Wilmington. It is closed now due to extensive damage it incurred during a night of looting on May 30th.

The team at Faire has also paired up with Newark’s Little Goat Coffee Roasting to supply the cafe with fresh beans. Other than the coffee, “much of the food will stay similar or the same – because when meeting with the community I realized people really liked the offerings,” said Shaw.

They are also adding a few menu items since the concept is changing.

“We are going to make sure to offer a little bit of breakfast and brunch and a few things for an after-work drink and snack as well,” she added. Bloody Mary’s will also make an appearance on the new menu.

 

We’ve seen bits and pieces of the redesign on her Instagram (@dallasshaw), including glimpses of an extremely cool wicker motorcycle — everything from stickers to coffee bags getting the designer’s touch. 

As far as events go, Shaw is “working hard to connect this space and a few other new concepts in Wilmington to come together for unique events, but the new design of space itself will make it a perfect space to have any private gathering.

Design concepts for the new Faire Cafe; Little Goat Coffee Roasting and late afternoon cocktails will be available

“Of course, small gatherings during operating hours upstairs will take place. But you’ll see that it will really be a perfect space for a rehearsal dinner or bridal/baby shower. The event curation has been a large part of my design because I felt like we needed to elevate those options in the city.

“We have a stunning custom gathering table, and as part of each event, the table will be meticulously designed with a beautiful charcuterie spread. I think we may find ourselves booking with brides and moms-to-be earlier than we had planned.”

 

The restaurant will receive a head to toe makeover, including outdoor space. “The overall style is a mix of dark and lights, wicker, rattan and dried floral elements and installations.

“Counter seating, communal table seating, a bar, even a few tucked away lounge areas for privacy. And here’s what’s even cooler: The palette will change 4 times a year. It will all make sense soon! I can’t wait for you to experience it.”

The redesigned cafe will open soon and is prepared to take proper safety precautions, which they have considered in the new design. Updates on the restaurant’s opening can be found at Faire’s Instagram page as well as their website.

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