Hit these top San Diego shopping destinations for fashion finds and new artisan markets this season.
Adapted from Retail Therapy by Sarah Daoust in the April 2016 issue of Performances Magazine San Diego
Luxury Farms Coronado
It’s one part gourmet specialty market and one part tasting room. Luxury Farms Coronado stocks gourmet pantry items, elegant kitchenware and home dècor, garden supplies, pet products, interior design and vintage finds, and gift baskets—all from both local and global purveyors. Peruse specialty condiments made locally under “The Patio” private label brand, such as chimichurri, bourbon-onion confit, green olive and artichoke tapenade, and mango-habanero marmalade. The store also stocks sauces from The Front Porch’s international private label brand, “The Patio Selections,” including classic tomato, porcini mushroom, puttanesca and red wine. Sample the extensive inventory of barrel-aged vinegars, and California-grown olive oils, or order sandwiches, salads and other bites to-go, created daily by The Patio’s executive chef. 918 Orange Ave., Coronado, 619.822.2190. luxuryfarms.com
Liberty Station is one of the top San Diego shopping destinations, and big things are happening there this season. The 361-acre, historical community in Point Loma is amid a renaissance of sorts with nearly a dozen new businesses opening in 2016 alone, spearheaded by developer Corky McMillin. The most anticipated venture is the just-opened Liberty Public Market—a 22,000-square-foot, renovated historical warehouse with more than 30 locally focused specialty purveyors. Some fabulous stops inside the artisan marketplace include Le Parfait Paris, a French boulangerie and patisserie; Grape Smuggler, a fine wine tasting room and shop; Fishbone Kitchen, a traditional fishmonger and an oyster bar; Mama Made Thai, serving Bangkok street food; Fully Loaded Juice, making organic cold-pressed juices; and Pots & Petals, offering fresh-cut flowers. Other new outposts nearby include meatball and apple pie shop Soda & Swine, Comickaze Comic Books, Kid Ventures, indoor/outdoor eatery Fireside by the Patio, and Buona Forchetta pizzeria. Late spring will welcome retailer Moniker General, Breakfast Republic restaurant and The Lot luxury cinema. Add these to historical golf course The Loma Club, the waterfront NTC Park and a burgeoning Arts District, and Liberty Station is transforming into a world-class destination. 2640 Historic Decatur Road, Point Loma. libertystation.com
Perhaps the most refreshing thing about spring fashion trends is that Melissa Hendrix, owner of Crow Thief in South Park, doesn’t really follow them. Instead, this San Diego shopping destination specializes in more timeless looks for men with handcrafted, custom-fit and custom-made clothing and accessories. “We design and manufacture all of our garments right here in San Diego,” explains Hendrix. “Along with offering custom services, we also have a selection of ready-to-wear available. We also believe every gentleman should have the opportunity to treasure exclusivity, which is why we only produce limited quantities per style for our ready-to-wear collection.” That said, Hendrix says she’s a sucker for a well-tailored cotton button-up shirt. “From clean and classic to bold patterns and textures, I like to mix and match, layer and/or add bold accessories. I enjoy being fun and creative with my personal style.” Hendrix recently crafted a men’s lightweight, tailored utilitarian jacket, a limited run of which had hand-painted, silk-sewn patches; as well as a new long-sleeve knit shirt. “With these two pieces, it’s all about simple, clean lines and incredible detailing.” 3009 Grape St., South Park, 619.961.6210. crowthief.com
Add some pop to simple basics this season with accessories that say something. Lone Flag in Del Mar is more of a concept space than shop—focusing on American-made clothing and accessories for men and women. Think well-crafted, premium-quality pieces that stand the test of time. Try the eye-catching Westward Leaning Voyager 16 sunglasses—featuring circular matte-sand tortoise frames with blackened California Redwood inlays for $185; or an electric blue, unisex utility bracelet for $28. 2690 Via de la Valle, Suite D140, Del Mar, 858.793.0712 To make an edgy fashion statement, don’t forget your feet. Blends in East Village is known for its rare and exclusive urban footwear, including sneakers, trainers and high-tops. The Nike Roshe line of brightly colored, polka-dot-covered sneakers can stop traffic at $100 a pair; while the Vans Vault Collection black-and-white checkerboard high-tops at $70 help to create a smooth street style. 719 Eighth Ave., East Village, 619.233.6126. loneflag.co
For women, achieving an effortless look often can take a lot of effort, especially when you also want to feel both sophisticated yet comfortable. Cecelia Church, owner of Vocabulary Boutique in Little Italy, says that her business is about a love for people, fashion and self-expression. “Our pieces are accessible, our collection is well curated, and our stylists who work here find joy in facilitating style and building relationships with our customers.” Vocabulary stocks contemporary fashions for women and men that feel chic and fuss-free, plus accessories and home accents. For women, Church’s favorite pieces include leather leggings and mid-waisted flare pants in lightened denim. “We also carry leather goods by FashionABLE, a great organization working with women in sustainable businesses in Africa. Their totes and clutches are simply perfect.” 414 W. Cedar St., Little Italy, 619.203.4066. vocabularyboutique.com