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Best of the West: Retail


Readers’ Picks:

Bike Shop
East County: Trek Bicycle Store
In Boulder County, where cyclists are commonplace, you have to know your stuff. The folks at Trek Bicycle Store in Louisville do just that. Customer service reigns supreme here with a smart staff of experienced bike lovers.

Boulder: University Bicycles
Boulder’s University Bicycles is iconic—an altar for devout cyclists to kneel at. From service to shopping, where they lead, we follow.

East County: Foxtrot Wheel and Edge
No snootiness here. Foxtrot bucks the stereotypes of attitude-drenched ski and bike shops with super friendly and accessible staff. Find consigned equipment here as well.

Boulder: Boulder Ski Deals
While deals are the name, this Boulder skiing landmark has built its reputation on solid customer service and inventory. Though, the price match guarantee is also pretty cool and the deals are stellar.

Sporting Goods
East County: Jax Outdoor Gear
Jax has filled a major void in East County’s offerings for sporting goods and camping gear. Find hiking boots, fishing gear, camping gear and all sorts of sporty duds. It’s a one-shop-stop for the Colorado lifestyle.

Boulder: REI
REI is a wonderland for local athletes. Whether you climb, camp, cycle, kayak, ski or just want to look like you recreate, you’ll can find it all at REI.

East County: Brown’s Shoes
Brown’s is packed full of shoes for Coloradans. From comfy boots to your favorite everyday Dansko clogs to athletic kicks and high-quality flip-flops, these shoes definitely fit.

Boulder: Two Sole Sisters
Whoever at GQ called Boulder a haven for the badly dressed never stepped foot in Two Sole Sisters, an institution for the fabulous and fashion-astute. And while the peep-toe heels and canary yellow wedge sandals may seem foreign, don’t be afraid Boulderites. It’s just style.

East County: Front Range Eye
Maybe the best part of having vision problems is that you get to rock some dope accessories. At Louisville’s Front Range Eye, you’ll get the bad news—”Sorry, you’re near-sighted”—with the good—ACCESSORIES!

Boulder: Wink
Of course there is a science to assessing and treating vision problems, but at Wink, you can also experience the science of selecting eyewear. Here, they know what glasses work for your face shape, eyebrow shape and eyes. You’ll leave being able to see just how good you look.

East County: Eric Olson Jeweler
Eric Olson has a vision, and it’s sparkly. His pieces range from mountain-inspired to complete and total elegance. Olson’s focus on originality and individuality means your sparkles will fit your style and personality.

Boulder: Angie Starr
It can be difficult to find everyday jewelry. But Angie Starr’s work has a definite organic feel: casual and cool with lots of texture and charm. Pieces perfect Monday through Sunday.

Clothing, Women
East County: Ville de Luxe
In Louisville, Ville de Luxe is packed full of everything you should wear. You’ll find great jackets, luxurious scarves and fun jewelry—it’s like having your own personal stylist.

Boulder: Weekends
Weekends has the Colorado female style down. Heck, they define the Colorado female style. With a blend of casual, cute comfort and chicness, Weekends is not just for Weekends anymore.
Clothing, men
East County: Old Town Outfitters
For years, there was a void in Longmont’s retail landscape: no outdoor clothing. But then Old Town Outfitters saved the day with brands like Prana, Royal Robbins and Horny Toad.

Boulder: Weekends
You can identify a Weekends man a mile away, and that’s a good thing. Dripping from head to toe in Colorado casual, they wear khaki with flip-flops and jackets over colorful button-ups, and even the occasional pattern.

Second Hand Clothing
East County: Fabulous Finds
Make sure you have time to spare when you visit Fabulous Finds because the large space is packed to the brim with second-hand treats: shoes and dresses, suits and even décor. It can seem overwhelming, but just take your time: there’s something perfect just for you.

Boulder: Rags Consignment
Here, the name of the game is strategy: work the tops, check out the jeans and then hit the shoes. But don’t you worry, the strategizing will pay off—in consigned pieces with top brand names and major labels.

There are so many nooks and crannies in downtown Louisville that you’ll never be bored: from pizza and ice cream at Sweet Cow and Lucky Pie to shopping at Fuzzy Antler or Ville de Luxe to beer and music at Waterloo. Fight boredom, visit Louisville.

Shopping District
East County: FlatIron Crossing
A mall is a mall, right? Nope. These days, malls run the gamut. But FlatIron Crossing has a little of everything: indoor shopping, outdoor walking, sit-down restaurants, food court, Forever 21, Williams and Sonoma. If variety is the spice of life, then FlatIron Crossing
is Sriracha.

Boulder: Pearl Street
Oh, Pearl Street, you think you’re so awesome. Just because you have great shops, world-class people watching, amazing restaurants, the Boulder Theater, really good street performers, super fun events and…OK, we get it.

East County: Barbed Wire Book
While Barbed Wire Books sounds like it’d be some motorcycle-driving, tatted-up bookstore that might get a little rough after a few beers, it’s really a pretty pleasant, sunny place with lots of used books.
Go figure.

Boulder: Boulder Bookstore
There are so many memories in this beautiful store. The rooms trace the phases of my life: children’s books, magazines, classic fiction, political non-fiction. There, I found my first book of Shakespeare, and I still find my favorites.

Home Décor
East County: Elizabeth’s Embellishments
What you find at Elizabeth’s Embellishments in Lafayette is not for everyone. It’s über feminine and frilly with a touch of shabby chic. Sure, not for everyone, but perfect for many.

Boulder: HW Home
Your home needs accessories, just like your body. Whether it’s art, sconces or even a horn from a Tuk Tuk motorcycle taxi, HW Home has a dynamic selection of goodies to dress your home up in.

Second-hand furnishings
East County: Serendipity
At Serendipity, shopping turns into an excursion—an escapade. Working your way through the displays of fur coats or atomic ranch décor, you collect a little of this and of that. It’s like going grocery shopping when you’re hungry: you never know what stuff you’ll bring home.

Boulder: Clutter Consignment
Clutter Consignment—despite its name—is not about clutter. It’s a well-curated collection of second-hand pieces that are only “second hand” in the best meaning of the word.

Home furnishings
East County: Woodley’s Fine Furniture
With its factory in Longmont and stores all across Colorado, Woodley’s Fine Furniture is the state’s pride and joy hardwood furniture manufacturer. Take that, other hardwood furniture manufacturers!

Boulder: HW Home
HW Home is the alternative of the big, big box shops. And while Jake Jabs has his baby tigers, HW Homes has an excellent selection of couches and chairs, dining tables and beds. Though, baby tigers are very cool.

Home improvement
East County: Home Depot
Every year, a big box store wins this category. And while we love to root for the little guy, we sorta get it. Home Depot offers something that most little guys can’t: price guarantees and a crazy big selection. Hey, that’s capitalism for ya.

Boulder: McGuckin Hardware
We hear it all the time from local businesses: I want to be the McGuckin of (enter your industry here). This longtime local home-improvement-and-everything-else shop has become the envy of every other local company. Why? Don’t you get the warm-fuzzies when you hear “McGuckin”?

East County: Lafayette Florist
Lafayette Florist saves the day once again: A bouquet bright and beautiful to a friend laid off from her job of 25 years, a bouquet for a 40th birthday, seeds and soil to plant a garden for my own bouquets. Life is never perfect, but flowers make
it better.

Boulder: Sturtz and Copeland
Whether you have a green thumb or you consider yourself a threat to most living things, the staffers at Sturtz and Copeland have the skills to make sure your plant purchases survive and thrive.

Kids Clothing
East County: Adornables
With the same style and flair of nearby Adorn, Adornables is a lovely little shop for hip little ones. While the décor is great, you’ll gush over the kids’ clothing. You’ll now know what it means to be adornable.

Boulder: Rocky Mountain Kids Clothing
What you want your kids to wear and what they want to wear are not always similar. But you can surely find compromise at Rocky Mountain Kids Clothing—where fashion and practicality merge together for fun, bright duds for all four seasons.

Toy Store
East County and Boulder: Grandrabbit’s
No matter the location—whether it’s Boulder or Westminster’s The Orchard—Grandrabbit’s is a magical experience. It’s a child’s dream of toys, books and dolls, stuffed animals, puzzles and giggle-inducing fun.

Gift shop
East County: Timbalier
Timbalier has style: from Hobo bags to luscious teas, you can find an ideal gift for pretty much anyone. So, spread the style.

Boulder: Bliss
The one problem with Pearl Street’s Bliss is that while you’ll walk in the door looking for gifts for others, you’ll spend most your time picking out jewelry or décor for yourself. Oh, the hazards of shopping!

Whole Foods
Consider yourself lucky: You have one of the most amazing grocery stores imaginable. Whole Foods is jam-packed with organic produce, a deluxe bulk section, amazing seafood and a prepared foods section that puts any food court to shame. Just try to avoid the parking lot.

Liquor Store
East County: Atlas Valley Wine and Spirits
This centrally located liquor store has become a favorite for Lafayette and Louisville residents. With weekly tastings, great deals and a really nice, knowledgeable staff, you can’t go wrong. Bonus, they are expanding soon.

Boulder: Liquor Mart
Liquor Mart rules this category every year, and it’s really not a surprise. Whether you are looking for high-end Scotch, cheap beer or a robust Spanish red, you only need to locate this stellar booze mecca.

Wine shop
East County: PJs
Buying wine can be like dating: You regret the bad ones, but when you find a good one, you’ll never want to let go. At PJ’s in Longmont, they know wine, and they work to make sure you know what you’re going home with. You’ll never regret again…at least not your wine.

Boulder: Boulder Wine Merchant
When it comes to wine, Boulder Wine Merchant is the end-all, be-all. You can always find what you need, and probably find numerous bottles that you don’t actually need.

Music Shop
East County: Miller Music
Miller Music started as a studio for private instruction for hopeful musicians. That was nearly 40 years ago. Today, the music shop and academy is Longmont’s go-to spot for everything country, rock ‘n’ roll and whatever is in between.

Boulder: Robb’s
Our publisher’s teenage son is a total music snob, playing numerous instruments and having the musical tastes of a Paste Magazine reviewer. When we heard he said Robb’s was “good” with “a nice atmosphere” and “high-quality guitars,” it practically knocked our socks off. “Good” in teenager language is like a five-star review, so nice job!

Pet shop
East County: Struttin’ Pup
Lafayette’s Struttin Pup is simply cool, and they ensure that you, the Colorado dog owner, feels cool…and has everything you need to be the best dog owner you can be. Toys, top-quality food, supplies and even DIY baths…be cool and well prepared.

Boulder: Whole Pets
Your dog is your co-pilot, so you must steer them in the right direction. Boulder’s Whole Pets has the right balance of practical and fun—with organic, all-natural or human-grade foods, indestructible toys and lots of eco-friendly supply gizmos.

Go to Critics’ Picks for Retail


email no info send march17th/09

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