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Xtabay's vintage trove of wonders

Image: Xtabay

Take a break from stuffing your face to explore this Southeast neighborhood’s bonanza of boutiques and shops. Seeking some chic fashions, old-school vinyl, or lady-approved X-rated toys? They’ve got you covered. 

Adorn

Chic and carefree, this locally owned mini-chain boasts three locations packed with sharp brands like Prairie Underground, Mother Denim, and Velvet to local Grayling jewelry and Pons shoes.

Clinton St Record & Stereo

A quirky analog realm of rare records, cassette tapes, and vintage audio gear—this is the spot to stock up on hard-to-find house and techno to boogie, Italo disco, darkwave, and indie rock (and get your hands on a quality old-school turntable while you’re at it).

Books with pictures pkyuok

Books with Pictures

Image: Kelly Clarke

Books with Pictures

The comics scene gets an all-inclusive makeover at this super-friendly shop with a mission to welcome everybody who “loves good stories”— that means newbies, women and people of color, and kids as much as seasoned collectors. And it translates to a tidy space bursting with indie and LGBTQ titles, comics featuring kickass female and POC heroes, kids’ picture books, Marvel and DC standards, and small-run handmade comics. Super indeed.  

Donna and Toots

This clothing and fabric boutique specializes in tailored but sassy and colorful everyday wear that can easily be dressed up for a wedding or a night on the town. Offerings range from dresses, skirts, and shirts to socks, hats, purses, and jewelry, with an emphasis on fairly traded materials that feel good and are meant to last. Though they offer labels that hail from places as different as San Francisco and France, the focus is on showcasing local designers at affordable prices, including clothing lines by the owners and employees. Bonus: a full schedule of sewing classes, too.

Little Otsu

San Francisco–born indie publisher Little Otsu’s high-style stationery shop is a study in Luddite perfection—from blank notebooks and planners adorned with pineapples and winsome pine trees to beautifully illustrated kids books and wrapping paper pretty enough to give as a gift itself.

 

 

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She Bop

There are adult stores, and then there’s Portland’s own female- and queer-friendly sex toy boutique—a chic trove of eye-popping tomes, paraben-free lubes, and a rainbow of high-end vibrators and dildos overseen by a crew of frank, enthusiastic staffers who are down to help you discover, well, whatever works for you—BDSM gear to exercisers that are like vaginal Fitbits. Bonus: the shop’s private group store tours are the best educational titillation in town.

Xtabay / The English Dept.

Forget musty and cluttered: This clean, organized women’s vintage clothing boutique looks more like the chic ladies’ dress shops of yore—which may be why it has regular customers who stop by every week to hang out and dish about fashion. Owner/style maven Liz Gross firmly believes that whatever is currently in vogue is based on pieces that have been done before. So despite the older labels, everything feels up-to-date. Imagine a 1950s fitted silk floral-print bombshell dress, or the perfect little black 1960s cocktail dress—something Audrey Hepburn herself might have worn—each handpicked by Gross. Très haute. The space is also home to appointment-only designer and vintage bridal boutique the English Dept., which sells some of the city’s most unique wedding frocks.

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