Best Boutique Shopping In L.A.
Sand, celebrity and shopping. If L.A. had to be summed up with 3 words those would be them, followed by scandal, LAPD, and prenup, but thats a whole other story and one not likely found in the annals of YAHglobal.Com. Not yet anyways.
Rodeo Drive and Melrose is no secret, nor are the major shopping malls and centers spread out about this massive Southern Californian shopping mecca. What makes any shopping aficianado proudest is the ability to "stumble" upon that cute little boutique that most competitors (hardcore shoppers consider fellow shoppers a threat in that they may grab that delightlful one of a kind, and "on sale", scarf first) don't know about, although in media heavy L.A., that is extremely unlikely. Eitherway, in an effort to drag you out of the mall and high traffic hubs of retail activity, grab a cappuccino (or several) and happen upon these neighborhoods in Los Angeles to achieve true boutique utopia.
The northern most section of Robertson Blvd, in West Hollywood and Beverly Hills, is where you want to go. Lined with trees and boutique shops, this stretch has celebrities, paparazzi, and looky loos buzzing. Kitson boutique store is probably its most famous retail resident but the better finds are the lesser known shops squeezed in between the likes of Agnes B, Lisa Kline and Erica Courtney to name a few. While the price tags may be a little high in this district, a skilled bargain hunter can unearth a great deal here and there. Regardless whether your intentions are to fill shopping bags or simply to celebrity spot, Robertson Blvd is worth the visit.
Abbot Kinney Blvd
If you are averse to the pretention you may encounter on Robertson Blvd you are likely to enjoy the atmosphere of Hipsterville LA, or Abbot Kinney Blvd. Artsy, chic, old school (vintage) and new school, you are hard pressed to find the exact combination of adjectives to describe the section of retail real estate. The boutique shops perfectly accent the overall vibe of this neighborhood with notables including Ananda which houses American, Asian and Indian designers at reasonable prices. Blik Surface Graphics is a fun stop for the interior designer inside you with its collection of trendy wall decals that allow you to alter the look of your abode like posters did for your room as a pre-teen, still as fun but classier. Surfing Cowboys is a favorite of many and the name stories the interior better than any description here could provide. Ten Women Venice is for art lovers and houses the eclectic works of local artisans of the so called "fairer" sex. Abbot Kinney Blvd is about fun and shopping rolled into one and can also be rated "Best Window Shopping In L.A." for its overall visual appeal.
La Brea Avenue
You'll want to focus your attention on the retail stretch between West 6th Street and Beverly Boulevard when browsing the boutiques of La Brea Avenue, which are more spread out than the other listed shopping neighborhoods in Los Angeles. This is one of those expeditions where you shop a store, caffeinate, shop again, do lunch, shop again, have dinner and then go home...eventually. The boutique mix is quite varied on La Brea Avenue with a nice combination of vintage, trend and indie scene gear and accessories. American Rag at 150 S. La Brea Ave. is one of L.A.'s most popular vintage destinations although they carry so much more in this ever expanding store. Bleu Clothing, found four blocks from American Rag (456 S. La Brea Ave.) is one of the more fashion forward shops in this district and worth a peek. The strip is also home to some of L.A.'s best interior decor boutique stores so be prepared to dress your body and your home when returning from a day at La Brea.
Montana Avenue is Santa Monica's favorite shopping destination and one of L.A.'s most exciting retail districts. 10 blocks worth of boutiques stores collect between 6th and 16th streets, with an estimated 150+ individual shops that cater to men, women, children, pet and the home. Many of these locations are unique and exclusive to Montana Avenue, making it a one of a kind experience.
It goes without saying that the fashion forward boutiques are plentiful and those with an obsession for clothes will be more than compensated for their time, but Montana Avenue's appeal really shines with stores such as Every Picture Tells A Story, a gallery dedicated to the Art of Illustration, with a unparalleled collection of unique books and works of both up and coming and famous artists depicting some of our favorite illustrated and iconic characters (Dr.Suess to Spiderman) of the last 80 years. Andrews Cheese Shop will tempt your palate with over 200 varieties to sample from. Peek Aren't You Curious, a store for anyone 3 months to 10 years old will have your head poking in the front door and pulling you in to nab something for the tot in your life. And To Wag For caters to that other tot of sorts, of the four legged variety. Montana Avenues boutique shop praise could go on and on and on...
The Studio City portion that Ventura Blvd runs along is the primary San Fernando Valley shopping destination of L.A.. Specifically, devote the bulk of your time to the Colfax Avenue and Coldwater Canyon vicinity as well as Tujunga Village where quaint vintage shops call home. Ventura Place Boutique (12053 Ventura Place) is a fun place to browse womens fashion under the attentive care of store owner Desiree Galvez. In a step up in the boutique shopping experience, Mimi & Hy – The Shoppe (12019 Ventura Blvd) is considered by many to be the best and trendiest upscale accessory store in L.A. with valet parking and personal shopping consultants available (by appointment of course) to assist you in making a selection from this at times overwhelming collection of ornamental goodies.
West 3rd Street
West 3rd Street is a mix of class and sass, an homage to the days of old and a shout out to the new school, local and international. In other words it’s got something for everyone, including some of L.A.’s hottest celebrity clientele. Cozied up between West Hollywood, Beverly Hills, and The Farmers Market and found just south of Beverly Blvd and east of La Cienega Blvd (Enough already…just look at the Google Map above!) the West 3rd shopping district is a primary retail target surrounded by boutique stores such as Hillary Rush (8222 West 3rd), Milk (8209 West 3rd), and Polkadots & Moonbeams (8381 West 3rd), all favorites of the trend setting Hollywood elite. For guys that want to get treated like a prince, head over to Douglas Fir (8311 West 3rd) and feel what fine fabric and even finer service feels like. There is more than plenty for those seeking non-garment purchases. A personal favorite of ours is Traveler’s Bookcase (8375 West 3rd) or you can get really specific and check out French Farmhouse styled fashions for the home at Vintageweave Interiors (7928 West 3rd). Whatever floats your boat can be found along this L.A. boutique haven.