Shopping & Services

  • Best (Pewter) Casting Agents

    f. is for frank

    f. is for frank, but we're inclined to say f. is for freaking awesome fashion. Shannah Frank and Casey Melton create hand-cast pewter jewelry, decorative hardware and more in their Design District studio. Jewelry designs are tough but incredibly elegant and often inspired by nature — hickory nuts, sea sponges, peacocks, horse teeth, rubber, wood and more in pewter and… More >>
  • Best Bike Baskets

    Don Johles Bike World

    The Wald Front Wire Basket, for about 20 bucks, has been the classic American bicycle basket for almost a century — big and sturdy enough for a load of groceries, a small dog or a very frightened cat. Don Johles Bike World has the Wald front and back steel baskets along with 10 pages of other cool baskets on its… More >>
  • Best Balcony Trees

    Sunshine Miniature Trees

    This is an easy place to miss, so you need to slow down and really look for it. In an old yellow house tucked way back on a long gravel driveway between the Taco Bell and Goody Goody Liquor, Sunshine Trees is a longtime survivor from the semi-rural hippie days of Upper Greenville. Founded in 1965, Sunshine's main specialty is… More >>
  • Best Place to Find What You Weren't Looking For

    Bettyann and Jimbo's Junkadoodle

    In Dallas we have no shortage of antique stores/old-skin-flake collectors. But we only have one Junkadoodle. Bettyann and Jimbo's Junkadoodle is a collection of the unusual — furniture, art, lamps, knickknacks, tiny floppy hats, oversized stiff hats, etc. — but it's a special collection. Seriously. Their shit is good. In other stores you'll pick up the nude-y ashtray, touch its… More >>
  • Best Vintage Clothing

    Dolly Python

    Still mourning the demise of Ahab Bowen? Rejoice, for Michael Longcrier is risen and has taken his baubles, bangles and bow ties to Dolly Python, which is owned by his protégé Gretchen Bell. This is value-added for a longtime favorite among vintage shoppers and now there's another treasure to hunt for in racks full of fabulousness — look for tags… More >>
  • Best Sporting Goods Store

    PGA Superstore

    Screw foreplay, these places are downright orgasmic. If, that is, you get aroused milling around a former old Plano Home Depot warehouse filled with sports memorabilia, a gazillion Izods, two bajillion clubs, a tennis court, a putting green, a chipping area complete with sand trap and countless driving range stalls equipped with computer analysis, simulated courses and a daily $50… More >>
  • Best Place to Find a Gift For the Ungiftable

    We Are 1976

    We all have an a-hole in our life — that one dickbag who doesn't have any discernible needs. And it's not necessarily that they have it all, it's just that they have nothing for me to give them. For them, there is We Are 1976. It's a random store where everything is super well-designed, cute, artsy, awesome, bone-able, etc. They… More >>
  • Best Way to Frame Someone

    Tom Battles Custom Framing

    Though already known for all the gig-poster framing he's done for the All Good Cafe, Tom Battles still fights the good fight to keep his mom-and-pop a contender against big chains that are way expensive and may handle old photos and hard-to-frame items with less care. Part of Battles' battle plan was this year's relocation from the Design District to… More >>
  • Best Custom Kids' Duds

    Little Bean

    The Junius Heights storefront Little Bean is already stocked with plenty of too-cute wares from various lines of clothing to toys, but designer/owner Christine Visneau also keeps her sewing machine at the ready for special requests and sudden inspiration. Visneau's styles, also dubbed Little Bean, are fashion with function paying respect to both the wearers and the washers of the… More >>
  • Best Hookahs

    Hookah District

    Toward the top of the line, the $289.99 Egyptian copper and brass single-hose hookah with handmade clay bowl and ice cup. At the bottom, a $40 model that is nevertheless nice and totally without plastic parts. Hookah District, which has a sister store at 11532 Harry Hines Blvd., sells to the discriminating nargilist, offering a line of top hookah tobaccos… More >>
  • Best Local Bug Bait

    Papa Richter's Roach Ridder

    When you have uninvited creepy crawlies, the best advice on getting rid of them comes from people in your own 'hood. After all, they know the same critters. East Dallas couple Douglas and Chrissy Fairweather developed all-natural Papa Richter's Roach Ridder and eventually manufactured it in sticky-backed bottle caps to mount in strategic spots. The boric acid-based formula is green… More >>
  • Best Party Favors

    Premiere Photo Booth

    After checking out photo booth after photo booth, we found that Premiere truly lived up to its name. The Frisco-based company provides Dallas-area events with a booth to entertain guests and spit out personalized photo strips that hearken back to those of the old days ... if the old days came with custom logos, a box of crazy props and… More >>
  • Best Grocery Store

    Whole Foods Park Lane

    Walking in the 64,000-square-foot Whole Foods for the first time can be intimidating. Why is there a large cosmetics section? Did I accidentally go to Dillard's? But once you make your way through the expansive produce and meat sections, you realize this is foodstuff heaven. Allergic to gluten? You'll find a large selection of gluten-free foods here. Like to get… More >>
  • Best Hippie Meat

    Urban Acres

    Whenever anyone starts talking to us about organic this, sustainable that and how buying local food can reduce our carbon footprint, we tend to zone out and assume that the conversation doesn't apply to us. Because we eat meat. A lot. Especially when we cook. A meal just isn't a meal unless we're eating something that once had a face,… More >>
  • Best Tailor

    Margaret Custom Alterations

    We're not so nimble with a sewing needle, but Margaret of Margaret Custom Alterations is so talented that she puts those crafty wannabes on Project Runway to shame. Whether you need a designer gown to be shortened or sequins replaced on your tacky Christmas sweater, Margaret can do it just right and in a reasonable amount of time. She can… More >>
  • Best Vet

    Katy Trail Animal Hospital

    We all know that old cliché about our furry friends being family members is true, and it's as much of a bummer when man's best friend gets sick as when your better half does. Sometimes veterinarian costs can run higher than human healthcare costs, but the folks at Katy Trail Animal Hospital aren't in the business of helping animals just… More >>
  • Best Hair Salon

    Avalon Salon

    There's no better feeling than stepping out of the hair salon with a shiny, swishy new 'do, especially if that new cut, color and/or blow-out hasn't made you break the bank. In a city full of fancy (read: expensive) hair salons, Avalon has consistently been our go-to spot for reasonably priced hair styling and up-to-the-second trends. Those feathers you see… More >>
  • Best Better-Than-a-Massage Experience

    Floating at Adrift Float Spa

    As much as massages have been touted as the ultimate way to melt away stress, there's another stress reliever that puts the standard massage to shame. Adrift Float Spa specializes in floating treatments coupled with anti-gravity massage. First, you spend 15 minutes or so in the anti-gravity massage chair, which loosens up your muscles and surprisingly feels as good as… More >>
  • Best Tarot Cards

    The Labyrinth

    In a purple cottage tucked away in a mysterious corner of Old East Dallas, this ... store? ... venue? ... spooky little hideaway offers a variety of merchandise associated with Wicca and other forms of magic. At the front in a glass cabinet is the best selection of tarot cards you're going to find in the city, certainly better than… More >>
  • Best Hospital

    Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas

    If you're having a medical emergency, the best facility isn't usually the one that shows up on U.S. News & World Report's hospital rankings year after year or the one that landed 14 consecutive Consumer Choice Awards. It's the closest. Fortunately for an East Dallas-dwelling friend who had a recent health crisis in which seconds counted, his nearest medical center… More >>
  • Best Bookstore

    Cliff Notes Prolonged Media - CLOSED

    Just like the literature summaries that inspired the bookstore's name, Cliff Notes is small. Before its move a couple doors down from 1222 W. Davis St. to its just slightly bigger current space, you could reach the register from the opposite wall in a couple of steps. But Carlos and Opalina Salas' shop is all the better for its diminutive… More >>
  • Best Way to Stay Hip

    Centre

    If you don't know about Centre, chances are you're old, hate rap music and have never been on a skateboard. Because everyone else in town knows well about this Mockingbird Station shop, the go-to retail spot for all things street wear and culturally up-to-date. Eye-catching graphic tees, hard-to-find sneakers, expressive ballcaps and even ceramic toys — Centre's got it all.… More >>
  • Best Record Store

    Good Records

    For one of the worst industries you can be in, Good Records seems to be doing quite well. With vinyl back in fashion, the Lower Greenville Avenue record store is staying afloat; more than half of their sales are LPs. But their success is probably because they sell more than just records. Their impressive in-store performances from national touring acts… More >>
  • Best Place To See A Ton of Junk

    Traders Village

    There's a certain odd comfort that comes from wandering around the expansive grounds of Trader's Village in South Grand Prairie. It's like a giant flea market mixed with the State Fair of Texas, and it happens every weekend of the year. Hundreds of vendors open up shop in small garage units, selling anything imaginable from furniture to comic books and… More >>
  • Best Florist

    Avant Garden

    If your idea of a great flower arrangement comes from 1-800-FLOWERS, you might be surprised by the sophisticated European-style offerings from Avant Garden. The Highland Park Village flower shop has been serving the surrounding affluent community for well more than a decade, but in 2010 it received a makeover thanks to new owner Todd Fiscus. While the shop's appearance changed,… More >>
  • Best Place to Spice Up Your Life

    Penzeys Spices

    With more than 250 different seasonings, spices, herbs, sprinkles and blends from around the world, Penzeys Spices is the place to go if you're looking to spice things up, whether you're a professional chef or amateur in the kitchen. Penzeys offers traditional seasonings like cinnamons, black peppers and curry powders, as well as dozens of unique blends. Northwoods seasoning, a… More >>
  • Best Comic Book Store

    Titan Comics

    What we said about Nick's Sports Cards goes triple for Titan Comics, the longtime Bachman Lake staple recently dispatched to Forest Lane to make way for a Walmart (much better location). We've said it countless times before: No toys, no action figures, no plush Green Lanterns for the baby dork, just comics, past and present, lining every wall and every… More >>
  • Best Tents

    REI

    Maybe because other places have been selling decent tents for cheap in recent years, REI has found ways to offer its own store line of tents at pretty good prices — under two bills for a two-man — and still maintain the quality for which REI is so well known. Their tents can get pricey, of course, but they have… More >>
  • Best Women's Clothing

    Pitaya

    As much as we want to like Forever 21 for its affordable style, it's too disorganized, loud and glittery (have you seen that floor?!) to get our business. That's why we're grateful for Pitaya. Not only can we find trendy dresses, tops and bottoms for $50 or less on average, we know that new stuff is guaranteed to be there… More >>
  • Best Wine/Liquor Store

    Spirits

    Of all the hundreds of categories in Best of Dallas, this is one of those we write about with something bordering on absolute authority. For a long while this spring we scoured the city for a lone bottle of Old Fitzgerald, widely considered the finest of all cheap bourbons. (We are nothing if not penny-pinching aficionados of grown-up drink.) Two… More >>
  • Best Liquor Store Staff

    Goody Goody, Oak Lawn

    When it comes to wine and spirits, Goody Goody Oak Lawn's staff know their stuff. Don't be surprised if when you walk in the door you're warmly greeted by at least three or more alcohol aficionados — especially during peak hours. The staff is eager to guide you through the expansive wine and liquor selections. Not only is the service… More >>
  • Best Texas Collectables

    Curiosities

    We've known proprietor Jason Cohen since his days running Forbidden Books in Expo Park; he's the man who introduced us to the joys of Naughty Dallas ... and Naughty Dallas, the movie, which is a whole other story. But then he morphed into a picker, an expert in discerning your trash from your treasures and then directing them to the… More >>
  • Best Hobby Shop

    Mike's Hobby Shop

    We admit calling Mike's best "hobby shop" might be limiting the definition of hobby a bit. Maybe your hobby is knitting, or pottery or viewing online porn. Fine, there are plenty of yarn stores, craft shops and the Internet out there for you. Our hobby — the non-Internet one, anyway — involves things with electric motors that go high and… More >>
  • Best Head Shop

    Retro Revolution

    This is a head shop? Where are the shelves lined with vibrators and dildos? How nice it is to venture into a store catering to fans of the herb that doesn't treat tokers like they're one skeevy step away from being a perv. Browse through the collection of retro-style clothing, art, jewelry, tchotchkes and incense and you may forget why… More >>
  • Best Men's Clothing

    Kohl's Department Store

    We're men. That's spelled M, E-child, N. Buh-DUH-buh-bump. What we want from clothes is fairly straightforward: Not much ironing, durable, fit for wearing almost anywhere without requiring that we think about it too much. Oh, and cheap. Cheap is good because it leaves us more money to spend on things we really care about, like beer and toys and more… More >>
  • Best Eyewear

    American Eyewear

    Remember those awful, dated glasses your mom and dad used to wear? Remember when you thought a giant pair of aviators or a set of Euro-styled teeny-weeny specs flattered your face? We hate to break it to you, but the fruit doesn't fall far from the tree. By that we mean those glasses on your face would make Mom and… More >>
  • Best Little Camping Tchotchkes

    Whole Earth Provision Co.

    Have you seen the camping plates, cups and even cooking implements that unsnap and fold down flat like a piece of paper? What about the thing that's a compass and a waterproof matchbox all in one? Do you have one of those little metal things that's flat and fits in a shirt pocket, but it unfolds into a mini pellet… More >>
  • Best Local Hand-Thrown Flower Pots

    White-Washed Terra Cotta Pots by David Day Redenta's Garden

    Dallas potter David Day throws traditional terra cotta flower pots, whitewashed and stamped with their weight and city of origin (Dallas), ranging from one and a half to 12 pounds per pot in a variety of classical shapes. The whitewash gives them an especially timeless aura. Day learned his craft as a demonstration potter at Old City Park, then moved… More >>
  • Best Knowledgeable Computer Store

    Micro Center

    Didn't say cheapest, did we? Micro Center usually has very competitive prices for computers and peripherals of all kinds, but the big thing here is "knowledgeable." That's important if you're trying to find a computer store where the employees know one single thing about the stuff they're selling. Or what day it is. Micro Center has the kind of sales… More >>
  • Best Old House Resource

    Uncommon Market

    If you ever frequented the old location in the Victorian houses on Fairmount where Uncommon Market did business for 40 years, you're in for a big surprise. The new location, in a vast airy warehouse on the edge of the Design District, is open and accessible but still manages to preserve that wonderful sense of discovery and surprise as you… More >>
  • Best Urban Feed Store

    Southland Farm Store

    Surrounded now by the medical research community and a sea of apartments, Southland Farm Store survives from a much earlier era when people nearby still kept small animals and even horses and cattle. For decades the store did well by converting to birding and pet supplies and organic gardening supplements. Now with the rise of urban backyard chickens, community gardens… More >>
  • Best Place To Get a Flat

    West Davis Street in Oak Cliff

    With a tire shop on seemingly every block, West Davis Street in North Oak Cliff is the place to be if you have a knack for predicting a blowout. Chances are you'll be close enough to a garage that you won't even have to mess with a spare. Some of them are cash-only, but as long as you can fish… More >>
  • Best Vigilante Justice

    Oak Cliff Bicycle Co. owners recognize stolen bike, confront thieves

    When a couple of teens walked into Oak Cliff Bicycle Co. hoping to sell a bike they claimed had belonged to their grandfather, Ean Parsons (no longer with the company) and Jeremy Ordaz could have made a quick buck by lowballing the sellers then turning around and selling it out of their shop. Problem was, they recognized the bike and… More >>
  • Best Place To Get Your First (Or Last) Tattoo

    Elm Street Tattoo

    With doom on the horizon, there are a few things that most any red-blooded American will want to do before curtain call (if they haven’t already). One of those “always wanted to” list items floating in people’s buckets is to get a tat, dammit. Most seasoned doomsayers probably already have some permanent markings upon their flesh, but for those who… More >>

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