With more news of store and restaurant closures coming out every day, it's unusual — but refreshing — to see new businesses setting up shop in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis.
Interior designer Baron Farha isn't letting these uncertain times ruin his lifelong dream of opening a showroom in the Dallas Design District. His just-opened AF Home specializes in custom furniture, home decor and art crafted by local artists.
Farha studied interior design at the Art Institute of Dallas and has worked in the industry for more than 20 years, managing showrooms, consulting on an array of design projects, and creating furniture and art for showrooms and galleries around the city.
"The idea for AF Home was born many years ago, but it took a while to turn my dream into reality," says Farha. "I've spent the last decade figuring out the moving pieces, while continued to learn from and work with top talents in the industry."
Though home decor stores are in large supply, Farha strives to differentiate AF Home by providing a more custom, personalized experience.
Design services are available to those who are interested, and the online shop and showroom boast a bevy of one-of-a-kind pieces with aesthetics ranging from California-chic to contemporary-modern and farmhouse traditional.
From scouting specific pieces to providing in-home furniture repair, an emphasis is also placed on customer service.
"When you walk into my showroom," he says, "you walk in as a friend, as if you're visiting my home. Clients get service they can't get anywhere else."
Along with the opening of AF Home, Farha is introducing a candle collection called Maison 20, which is now available in store and online.
Candles are crafted of fine oils and clean-burning, natural waxes and come in five scents: Santal, Rose & Oud, Oud & Bergamot, Fig & Almond and Humidor. Proceeds from each Maison 20 purchase benefit the American Cancer Society and additional fragrances will be introduced this fall.
AF Home is located at 377 Howell St., Dallas. Hours are 10 am-5 pm weekdays and by appointment only on weekends.