Shopping Guide for Dilworth/South End
With hip-hop tracks blaring, an industrial-inspired interior, and rows upon rows of the hottest footwear for the streets, NICHE is the perfect spot to channel your inner Kanye West. This South End store makes it easy to achieve that urban-influenced vibe, carrying hard-to-find Nike sneakers in plaids, polka dots, hot pinks, and sky blues (starting at $90), Undefeated hats ($50), and bold Alife T-shirts ($55).
1510 Camden Rd., 704-379-1811, thenichemarket.com
Featuring designer jeans and trendy day wear (think Juicy Couture and Little Marc Jacobs) for tots, Petal gives us one more reason to wish we were kids again. But it's not just about the kiddies: owner Jammie Dean lines racks with feminine dresses by Amanda Uprichard, Prairie New York, Ella Moss Black Label, MINT by jodi arnold, and more.
1315 East Blvd., 704-817-8871
Vespa of Charlotte
Customers at this South End shop are welcomed by posters of Vespa-riding celebrities Dean Martin and Charlton Heston, which hang tall against the walls among the selection of multicolored, shiny scooters. Not only does Vespa of Charlotte sell four different brands of top-quality scooters (Vespa, MotoFino, Kymco, and TGB), and nifty accessories, but it also has one of the best service shops in the Southeast.
128 W. Worthington Ave., 704-373-7400, vespaofcharlotte.com
This Dilworth staple understands the dilemma of finding just the right brassiere. To help along the tricky process, ICL offers bra-fitting services. In addition to bras, there's a wide selection of FleurT nightgowns (starting at $85), Hanky Panky panties ($18-$34), Huit bra-sized bathing suits (starting at $54 per piece), and Jacques Levine slippers (starting at $34).
1419-F East Blvd., 704-377-7955, iclondon.com
Luxe Home Couture
Navigating this posh, transitional home store means ogling and coveting everything from boho Ankasa pillows ($350-$400) to an array of crackling Deanna Decker wood-wick candles ($36-$65). Not sure how to pair all the chic lamps, funky vases, and vintage furniture? Luxe offers design consulting to help your home look just as style savvy as the store.
227 East Blvd., 704-370-2644
lucy and company
Designer/owner Beth Keim perfectly outfits kids' rooms with custom bedding, top-quality furniture, accessories, and lighting, all of which can be found in her East Boulevard showroom. If your wee one is still utterly attached to his Thomas the Tank Engine décor, drop by and snag a colorful frame, monogrammed pillow, or fun lamp to complement any room's playful décor.
1009 East Blvd., 704-342-6655, lucyandcompany.com
Don't be fooled by this shop's chic interior and fashionable duds—it's not nearly as expensive as its stylish storefront would have you believe. In fact, everything from the Melie Bianco handbags ($74) to the silver-plated earrings ($6 per pair, above) are priced under $100. Want to see what's on the racks before you make the trip? Check out the store's Web site, which is updated weekly with new arrivals.
1800 Camden Rd., Suite 102, 704-372-1002, shopeileen.com
The Bee Man Candle Company
If you haven't watched Brian Howell (a.k.a. the bee man) form his authentic beeswax candles yet, you're missing out on one of the city's most unique and old-fashioned experiences. His recently renovated shop features candle-making classes for the creative, as well as plenty of the fragrant pre-made versions from lines like Illume and Archipelago.
1440 S. Tryon St., 704-333-4823, beemancandles.com
Tea ReX Teahouse
With lofted ceilings, exposed brick walls, and some seriously good tea, this renovated cotton mill-turned-teahouse erases all tea-related stereotypes of Victorian china and British grandmas. Settle in to one of their patio tables or pull a seat up to the bar for a fresh-brewed, cinnamon-speckled cup of the authentic chai—it's packed with cardamom, cloves, ginger, and enough black pepper to make your mouth burn. Their menu features more than 100 teas, and the shop's shelves are crammed with fun tea accessories from saucers to strainers. For the true tea aficionados there are rare teas available, including the supreme silver needle, a white tea with a nutty flavor that goes for $42.95 for 0.20 pounds. And if coffee is more your style, don't be deterred: the teahouse offers a tasty café au lait and house blend.
2102 South Blvd., 704-371-4440, tearex.com
Everyone has a favorite tee, the go-to wardrobe item for running errands and watching rainy-day movies. Joining South End's eclectic boutique offerings, American Apparel is straight out of L.A. but without the designer price tag. Cotton, Spandex, and a combination of both can be found in v-necks, crew necks, long and short sleeves, and even a few very 1980s-like leggings, which are offered in every color of the rainbow…and then some. The main reason American Apparel is a winner: All clothing is designed, manufactured, and marketed in “Made in the USA” fashion.
1504-300 Camden Rd., 704-342-6040, americanapparel.net
The Bag Lady
Similar to the bag lady on the side of the street, this Bag Lady also carries an eclectic array of books, jewelry, and random must-haves. The gift store claims to be an oasis for ladies, offering blissful Votivo candles, humorous gift items, K. Robins jewelry, and even a corner dedicated to the community with educational and health resources for women. For the art connoisseur, The Bag Lady has an incredible selection of local artwork, which features the only MaryAnne Radmacher original watercolors in the country, as well as unique Story People sculptures. With more than fourteen years of service and their consistent donations to women's shelters, we just have to say it—you go, girl!
1710-200 Kenilworth Ave., 704-338-9778
The owners here go on a weekly hunt for great finds to restock their warehouse with classy furniture goods that make you wonder why you ever drove to High Point. Open to the public on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays, this South End-area spot boasts beautiful bed frames from Highland House and Century armoires in addition to cool accessories like weathered wooden mirrors for the dining room or foyer. Upholstery services are also offered with a four- to six-week turnaround time, and interior designers are always on hand to help with your selections.
3021 Griffith St., 704-527-4223, boulevardbazaar.com
Breathing Room is a relax-and-unwind yoga studio filled with the sweet scent of herbal teas. Yogis be forewarned, though: be prepared to leave with bundles of apparel. The studio is chock-full of cool yoga goodies (think spa products from Weleda and bliss plus books, blocks, and bags) not to mention one of the best selections of yoga apparel in Charlotte. And if the shopping tires you out, pull up a seat at the Pure Bar and recharge with one of BR's rejuvenating teas.
214-100 W. Tremont Ave., 704-335-3315, breathingonline.com
Sleek designs plus comfy fabrics makes for the perfect home furnishing equation. Stay traditional with cinnamon-colored leather sectional couches and dark walnut coffee tables, or add some color with pieces like the red “Ufo” lounger or the “Sunny” Yellow soft leather sofa. Whatever your style, By Design makes sure your home is truly a place to rest.
2130 South Blvd., 704-342-4600, bydesignfurniture.com
True to name, Cottage Chic offers adorable home furnishings and accessories that provide a relaxed and welcoming vibe to any abode. From basic wicker furniture, classic apothecary cabinets, and Turkish bath linens to retro pink refrigerators, vintage signage, and kate spade handbags, this South End store has it all. Don't forget to check out their collection of essential home accessories such as Votivo candles, Matteo bedding, and Bella Notte linens.
1232 East Blvd., 704-375-1888, cottagechicstore.com
Similar to its name, this international chain specializes in furniture with a sleek, futuristic style. Lamps come in box, mushroom, and peanut shapes, bedding comes adorned with funky, swirl patterns, and furniture has precise lines from top to bottom. So, out with the old conventional thinking and in with EQ3's slightly off-centered, modern design.
2137 South Blvd., 704-334-0200, eq3.com
Flava Factory not only sells the hottest urban attire, but also doubles as a barbershop, so looking stylish takes only one trip. The store's collection of bold tees by Alife, colorful Nike sneakers, and the trendiest accessories have even been known to attract celebrities such as rappers Paul Wall and Lil' Boosie and professional basketball player Carmelo Anthony.
2041-D South Blvd., 704-529-3900, flavafactory.com
With the largest display of home office, home entertainment, and leather furniture in North Carolina, it's no secret that this family business knows the key to success. For more than twenty-five years, Furniture Solutions has offered top quality leather that can be custom made into your comfiest couch or chair to date. The sleek design of credenzas, writing desks, and TV consoles provides functional furniture that will last for years.
1426 S. Tryon St., 704-332-9555, furn-solutions.com
With sky-high shoes, funky bags, and flowy tops, Glamour Puss brings what they like to call 'Bling on a Budget' to South End. Men and women can find the perfect outfit for romping around Charlotte's hottest bars or take advantage of the salon services offered by the experienced staff. Before you shop, customers can visit the salon section of the store to get a haircut, learn how to properly apply makeup, or even receive eyelash extensions, providing all the essentials you need for a night out Uptown.
1800-101 Camden Rd., 704-334-2426
The Inspired Home
Still relatively new to the Charlotte area, The Inspired Home wasted no time in becoming an impressive business. From the Old World look of the solid wood furnishings and collection of Chinese and Indian antiques, you would never guess the store was formed in 2005. Not only does The Inspired Home offer one-of-a-kind pieces and custom furniture, its eco-friendly furniture line uses reclaimed teak, mahogany, and rosewood to reduce the harm on the local environment.
2517 Distribution St., myinspiredhome.com
It's hard to say what you'll find while walking through this 17,000-square-foot retail space, and that's exactly what we love. With more than sixty-five different vendors selling items from $5 to $15,000 in separated vignettes across the floor, it's almost impossible to come out empty handed. While most customers visit this Charlotte goldmine to ogle the antiques, there are a number of vendors offering unique furniture, custom drapery, elegant Simon Pearce lamps, heart of pine flooring, and splurge-worthy Niermann Weeks chandeliers.
2000-200 South Blvd., 704-377-6226
It's easy to find unique designer fashion in Charlotte, but finding trendy pieces that won't break the bank is hard to come by. Luckily, owner Effie Loukas provides Dilworth shoppers with affordable and exclusive clothing, shoes, and accessories that carry a designer look without a painful price tag. And, as of this summer, uptown studs can enjoy the same luxury with the private by lotus men's line, featuring Artine tailor-fitted suits and Nod organic tees.
1247 East Blvd., 704-332-2047, ladyinlotus.com
When toned celebrities and the Victoria's Secret catalogue aren't enough to drag you to the gym, a good outfit just might do the trick. Lululemon features athletic clothing with technical fabrics to ward off B.O. and sweat stains, something every gym junkie can be thankful for. Top-quality yoga, running, and dance apparel in a variety of colors and styles can be found at their Dilworth showroom, as well as information on fitness in the community.
Shops at Twin Oaks, 1419 East Blvd., 704-344-0667, lululemon.com
Voted Best New Gallery in America in 2006 by Niche Magazine, Maddi's is a contemporary, funky, and irresistibly charming art gallery featuring American crafts, jewelry, and Southern folk art. Take home a unique fabric painting, formed from snippets of old fabric, by Chris Roberts-Antieau, and make a bold statement on the walls of your home.
1530 East Blvd.; 704-332-0007, maddisgallery.com
Metropolitan Design on South
Though a newcomer to South End, opening in May of 2008, Metropolitan Design on South combines two impressive services to make one key Charlotte home store. On one side of the duo, clients can virtually build their kitchen or bath from the ground up, with custom cabinets, a knowledgeable staff, and installation all on hand at Metropolitan Kitchen and Bath Design. But what makes this store one-of-a-kind is the option to pair your items from the kitchen and bath section with signature pieces from the neighboring company, Rooney Robison Antiques. The showroom displays porcelain lamps, tables, chairs, sideboards, and a variety of other English, French, and American antiques in a home like atmosphere so buyers can preview how each piece will fit in to their current décor. So whether you're remodeling your kitchen or looking for a bit of history to add to your abode, Metropolitan Design on South is your one-stop shop for a gorgeous updated home.
1719 South Blvd., 704-334-2002, metropolitanconcepts.com
The Milky Way
There's more than cute onesies and miniature sandals when it comes to caring for a new baby, and it can all be found at The Milky Way (along with adorable onesies and sandals). Dozens of breastfeeding accessories, including Hooter Hiders nursing aprons and Bravado nursing bras, can be found along the same aisles as soft Chenille blankets, patterned Fleurville diaper bags, and nifty baby dinnerware sets.
Shops at Twin Oaks, 1419 East Blvd., 704-374-9200, amilkyway.com
Neal Johnson, Ltd.
Who needs to dream about far away locales when you can have pieces of them sitting in your living room? Traveling the world may seem like a vacation to most, but to Neal Johnson, it's a constant search to find the next quirky trinket. Johnson jets to Europe, Africa, and Asia seeking inspiration and items to bring back to Charlotte homes, and the culture and history that lies within each lamp and table will definitely give houseguests something to talk about.
601 S. Cedar St., 704-377-1099, nealjohnsonltd.com
This Dilworth staple lines its walls with the trendiest home accessories and the perfect gifts for any occasion, making your job as a host or guest easy. From quirky NobleWorks greeting cards and a collection of Umbra products to Thymes aromatic skin and hair care, Paper Skyscraper offers affordable must-haves that will make you look like a present perfectionist.
330 East Blvd., 704-333-7130, paperskyscraper.com
Whether you're an art guru or just trying to liven up your home or office, this arts and crafts gallery has a unique piece for any locale. Find the perfect, one-of-a-kind gift for brides and grooms with RedSky's bridal registry, or leave lasting impressions on clients and staff members with the Corporate Gift Program. Can't tell Picasso from your tot's finger paintings? RedSky provides complimentary art consultation for residential and corporate clients.
1244 East Blvd.; 704-377-6400, redskygallery.com
Imagine dozens of glass shelves, climbing toward the ceiling, each one brimming, with rows of jewelry in every shape, size, and style. This is the accessories section at Sloan. No matter what your heart desires—gold, silver, pearls, pendants, earthy beads, colored crystals, wide cuffs, delicate charms, dramatic chandeliers, or simple studs—you'll find it here. The prices of the glam pieces by designers including Chan Luu, Jose Barrera, Jill Jacobson, and Charlotte locals Kym Motley, Kristin Morris, Sally Payne, and Nancy Day run the gamut from $20 to $500.
Shops at Twin Oaks, 1419-B East Blvd., 704-338-1400, shopatsloan.com
This South End furniture company isn't for the traditional. Innovative designs and unique décor fill the floors and promise to give any home or condo a definite wow-factor. Throw out the hand-me-down furniture and contemporize your abode with funky chandeliers, sleek dining room tables, and posh vases.
1440 S. Tryon St., 704-333-0567, spenzac.com
STEP by Sloan
Show us a woman who says she doesn't have a weakness for a fantastic pair of heels, and we'll show you a liar. STEP by Sloan offers a bountiful array of shoes for any outing – strappy Diors for an evening out or classic Cole Haans for the office. Personal service, and a large selection, will help you add the perfect ending to any outfit.
Shops at Twin Oaks, 1419 East Blvd., 704-376-1275, stepbysloan.com
Walking through Sticki Rice is like taking a journey through the Orient, and that's no accident. Owner Amy Jenkins, who grew up in Asia, fills her cozy boutique with gifts and home décor items she purchases from Asian villages. Nothing is a replica; pieces are either old or handcrafted. Choose from antique armoires, coffee tables, and sideboards in addition to fun accessories including leather boxes filled with chopsticks, handbags from Asia, or iPod cases made from Indian saris.
1222 East Blvd., 704-644-5363, stickirice.com
Three Little Birds
At this South End shop, you'll not only receive personal attention, but also a wide selection of elegant paper goods. Adorable paisley note cards by Inviting Co., custom-designed invitations by in-house professional artists and designers, and classy notepads by Exquisite Paper are just a few of your options.
2115-103 Southend Dr., 704-379-7778, threelittlebirdsinc.com
a b o d e
Inviting vignettes make for a relaxing retail experience. Curl up on one of the chocolate-hued linen chairs by Carr & Company ($2,200) or check out the simple framed botanicals by South Carolina artist Becky Davis (starting at $225). Owner Mary Tobias Miller makes it easy to update your home without emptying your wallet with a variety of affordable accessories. Miller also offers design services by appointment.
201 W. Worthington Ave., 704-332-3731
There's something about the azure and black “Tiffany” sneakers and the “Tie Dye” Dunk Mids that make even tennis shoes seem posh. Black Sheep offers both of these colorful styles as well as a large, and unique, selection from Vans, Fallen, DC, Nike SB, Emerica, and more. To complete your urban outfit, guys can pick up clothing from Jedidiah and Matix, and girls can check out styles from Split and OK47. Their Friday “Please to Meet You” art shows prove to be a South End hit, as the store offers beverages, music, and local art, all surrounded by some of the hottest attire in the Queen City.
1504 Camden Rd., 704-333-1423, blacksheepnc.com
It's no surprise that the Keims produced another Charlotte hit with the opening of Siskate Gallery. Co-owner Keith Keim started out working with his wife, Beth, at lucy and company, but upon the birth of Lucy's little sis, Kate, Siskate Gallery was born as well. Not only can visitors view local artists' collections, but they can also attend design classes and book the chic space for private parties.
1710 Camden Rd., 704-370-2826, lucyandcompany.com
Modern Lighting Design Showroom
Located on the corner of South Tryon and Camden streets, the front window, filled with samples from Bruck Lighting Systems, Vibia, and Foscarini, is as impressive as the surrounding art galleries. Owner Liza Branch will help determine the best design for your needs out of her catalogued items, which you'll proudly display in your home in two to three weeks. From floor lamps to chandeliers and outdoor sconces, Modern Lighting is the place for the home decorator who wants to make a statement in lights.
1447 S. Tryon Street, 704-332-0109, modernlightingdesign.com
Whether you're the next Martha Stewart or interior decorating-challenged, it's impossible to walk out of Metro without a completely hip and modern piece for your home. You'll covet everything in the South End store, from EUROfase contemporary chandeliers and Arteriors Home's gorgeous table lamps to funky Nambé vases and sleek Knoll tables.
911 E. Morehead St., 704-375-4563, metroformodern.com