So, you remember when I said that gearing up for the holidays has been excellent? Well, it’s true. There has been SO much excellence BUT, it’s also been cold - I forgot how unforgivingly cold Idaho can be in December. For those of you who don’t know, I have been chasing summer for the last year. I moved from Sun Valley, ID to Santa Barbara in 2015 because I was tired of keeping myself and my house warm for eight months a year and there’s nothing like wearing a bikini in the dead of winter. Now I’m back in the North Country, freezing my toes off. Don’t get me wrong - I love a white Christmas, and a good day of snowboarding, but I also want some warmer weather and a beach day...
All of this being said, I have made my choice, and Idaho will always be home in my heart no matter how badly I want to jump in the ocean - it doesn’t mean a gal can’t travel to shake off some winter blues and thaw out, though! In the moments I find myself thinking about where I could go, and what I could be doing there, I think of my favorite stop-n-shop places.
Here’s a list of gems you shouldn’t overlook in my top three winter adventure/escape spots.
Sun Valley, ID - because, like I said, I love a good day on the mountain! And this is home...I love it here.
This is where I really nailed down my understanding of how boutique businesses are run all thanks to Michelle Ferris, the owner and founder of KFC and Girl Friday. This eclectic, fun, and intimate shop could keep a woman busy for hours (not to say it couldn’t also work for men, but it has a feminine flair that’s pretty outstanding). Between the beautiful handcrafted jewelry in the display cases, the awe-inspiring clothing in Girl Friday, and the sea of giggle-inducing gifts and trinkets, you’re bound to find something that you won’t want to leave behind. Get yourself a nice bouquet of fresh cut flowers while you’re at it, too!
For food nuts, and health enthusiasts, (and everyone else for that matter) I can’t recommend this place enough. All of the food for purchase here is good and good for you, as local as it can be, and is made with love. Some of my personal favorites are the raw, dehydrated flackers (flax crackers) and the homemade sauerkraut. Do your digestive system a favor, and get in here.
For all my second hand store lovers out there, DO NOT MISS THIS STORE! This local and regional gem was founded in 1955 to help boost funds for The Community Library, and has stayed true to it’s mission since then. In the store you will literally find everything you could possibly want - a fashionable one piece ski suit, a glitz and glam cocktail dress, a never-before-worn designer jacket for the man or woman in your life, a great pair of skis, or your next favorite book. I’m telling you, the place lives up to it’s name! There’s gold in there!
I don’t know how I can make this clear...Huck & Paddle is yummy. It smells yummy - locally made and hand poured soy candles are to blame for that - and their home decor is (and I don’t use this term lightly) drool-worthy. It’s YUMMY. They were also voted best new business of 2015. I never miss a chance to see what’s new in this store when I go home, and neither should you!
Seattle, WA - I can’t get enough of Seattle...it’s one of my favorite cities (not only because my favorite sister lives there with her fabulous husband and ADORABLE BABY GIRL, Eadlyn, it’s also an awesome place to go blow off some steam). Fashion, COFFEE, FOOD...those are all reasons to visit, but I am not tied to the order in which these reasons are listed. Coffee often comes first...sometimes right behind food.
Our next stop on this vintage/consignment/repurposing clothing and accessories train (can you tell I love consignment and secondhand goods?) I’m on, is Indie Frock in Ballard. The store is on the front line of fashion all year long, pulling from hot closets, and chic boutiques as far south as LA. Also, you’ll find one of my favorite jewelers here (this is pretty much the main reason I stop in, I’m gonna be honest) - Feather and Skull Jewelry. Check dat shit out!
LOVE LOVE LOVE. JEWELRY JEWELRY JEWELRY. Need I say more? This place is on 3rd Street and Vine in Belltown is amazing. Also, 7% of all of their proceeds go to nonprofits. You’ll have to trust me when I say GO TO HERE.
If you’re in Seattle on a Sunday, don’t miss Fremont Sunday Market...it’s the biggest treasure hunt extravaganza, food frenzy, and craft fair that happens weekly in Seattle (that means all year long!). If you like a heavy dose of excitement and social buzz, this place will do more than empty your wallet, it will enrich your soul. Really, don’t miss it.
Back to vintage...or did I ever really stray from it? Atlas Vintage boasts a glorious collection of well preserved clothing items ranging from classy footwear to mid-century cocktail dresses, perfectly distressed denim, and a bunch of other goodies that will fit your fancy. Besides that, there are records, accessories, and furniture for sale. If you like vintage, or you just want to jump back in time for an hour, get your tooshie to Atlas Vintage.
Santa Barbara, CA - My second home. I love how warm SoCal is in the winter time, and all year long for that matter.
The Sacred Space - Summerland, CA
So, when you go to their website, the first thing you read is, “Treasures from Heaven available on Earth.” Yes. Yes. Yes. Rare and unique goods from Asia sold RIGHT HERE...it’s an incredibly tranquil space to boot. I love to just sit and meditate here, get away from technology and just simply relax.
Folly Vintage Home - Carpinteria, CA
This mom and daughter home goods store is divine. I love going in here because everything is maker-made, and sold with love. The store has a 100% commitment to artists (who are mostly local), which just makes my little heart sing.
Wild & Free Jewelry - Santa Barbrara, CA
THIS BABE. If you’ve ever seen Wild and Free Elephant Jackets sold in MOBO, you’ll know how extraordinary this woman is just by glancing at her work. She doesn’t have a brick and mortar store, but she makes all of her art in Santa Barbara (and yes, she really does make everything). Not only is she a beautiful soul, and a dear friend, she is an incredibly talented artist. If you are a queen, she has your crown (especially if you’re a mermaid or a forest fairy), but if you’re more of a denim mama, her jackets are f*cking GREAT.
I would live in this store if I could...all they need is a food section, and I’m sure I could find a corner to make my bed. Handcrafted, upcycled, fair trade, inspired and local are the kinds of goods they sell here, and hoo-dangy if they aren’t fabulous. If you’re in SB, and you either want to bask in the glory of good things, or you’re out for a truly good find, stop in and support this A+ establishment.
Lucky Llama Coffee - Carpinteria, CA
Because everyone needs caffeine (and if they say they don’t, they’re liars). This spot is my favorite to park the boutique at when I’m in California. Their Acai Bowls are out of this world, and the family that owns this place is incredible kind, generous and conscious…and they have they most adorable children!
Dream on Dreamers! Get up and get out!