Look for Tanov's earthy, delicate clothing (such as her signature slipdresses, $260 each), along with pieces by emerging lines like Addison House, which makes tees appliquéd with quilt scraps ($98).
This store introduces suburban shoppers to labels usually found in big-city boutiques. Look for Buddhist Punk, Mint, and Tomorrow's Chase—we love its tee featuring a scribbled likeness of a sand castle ($62). 1354 N. Main St., Walnut Creek, 925-944-4874
Each season, owner Paul Scott Silvera selects a theme for his home decor shop and stocks accordingly. Currently, he has the shelves lined with summer camp memorabilia, including vintage pennants ($30) and antique binoculars ($55 and up).
Picture a fantastical Victorian parlor filled with oddities and objects begging to be touched—shellacked beetles ($3 to $8), spools of pure silk ribbon ($3 to $7 per yard), a giant stuffed emu—that's Tail of the Yak.
Objects that focus on form as much as function, like simple Danish glassware, are mainstays of this architect-owned stop.
Located down a tiny, palm-tree-shaded street that seems more accessible by moped than by car, Bésame Mucho's tucked-away appeal is reason enough to visit. (Trust us: You'll want an escape from nearby tourist drag Duval Street.) Once you browse Bésame's amazing array of offerings—handcarved cinnabar bangles, painted chiffon Chinese lanterns ($26), Diptyque candles, and scented cologne waters by Italian line Santa Maria Novella—you'll be doubly glad you made the detour.
Though the difficulty of finding shells in a Key West store is about as challenging as locating a Slurpee in a 7-Eleven, most of what's available is banal at best. Don't let that stop you from visiting the Shell Warehouse. There are so many unexpected surprises here.
Delicate bone-china teacups and saucers painted with flowers are a steal here (about $18 per set). The store is tiny, so take the time to check out the selection of silver platters and costume jewelry as well.
A beloved resource for quality vintage clothing and costume jewelry from the 1970s and '80s.
Every Georgia red clay mug, vase, plate, and pitcher is made on-site by a team of local potters at this charming ceramics studio.