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Best Of Atlanta 2011 Consumer Culture Large


Consumer Culture

The term "retail therapy" is dorky and cliché, but there is something to be said for the healing power of shopping. Spending money is a form of catharsis, and we've scoured Atlanta's retail scene for the best places to get it all out.

There weren't many new places to blow dough this year, but we rustled up plenty of stores that make us proud to shout, "Recession be damned!" and dust the cobwebs off our wallets.

While some of us are buying on a budget and others have the means to splurge, everyone feels good about shopping at locally owned businesses. The Beehive Co-op, in its recently opened retail space, charmed us with its selection of handmade jewelry from local artists and indie crafters. And we love the new ATL apparel company Streetela for making local street art wearable.

Among our other faves are a B&B-slash-urban farm in the heart of the city, a beautiful chocolate shop that makes its confections from scratch and a tattoo parlor that knows how to ink skin of all colors. And for retail therapy in its most literal form, may we suggest the to-die-for luxury mani-pedi at Nouvelle Nail Spa or G Salon's $40 spa deal?

Sure, it might be time to stop saying "retail therapy," but indulging in it will never go out of style.

— Gwynedd Stuart and Bobby Feingold

Best women's clothing store BOA Award Winner

free fab'rik Boutique
And other metro Atlanta locations

Best bikini wax BOA Award Winner

Sweet Samba Wax & Sugar Bar
And other metro Atlanta locations

Best kids' clothing BOA Award Winner

Target
And other Metro Atlanta locations

Best hair Salon BOA Award Winner

Van Michael Salon
And other metro Atlanta locations


Best furniture store BOA Award Winner

IKEA

Best spa BOA Award Winner

Natural Body Spa and Shop
And other metro Atlanta locations

Best sporting goods BOA Award Winner

Dick's Sporting Goods
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Best thrift store BOA Award Winner

Value Village - East Atlanta
And other metro Atlanta locations

Best candyland fantasy BOA Award Winner

Cacao Atlanta Chocolate Co

Best designer kitsch BOA Award Winner

Jonathan Adler

Best farmers market BOA Award Winner

the Peachtree Road Farmers Market

Best shoes you can't afford BOA Award Winner

Epitome
Cher Horowitz famously quipped in Clueless, "You see how picky I am about my shoes and they only go on my feet." We couldn't agree more. Shoes make or break every outfit. Roll out of bed in sweatpants, put on a hot pair of kicks and you'll look like a million bucks. Epitome, the new shoe boutique inmore...
Cher Horowitz famously quipped in Clueless, "You see how picky I am about my shoes and they only go on my feet." We couldn't agree more. Shoes make or break every outfit. Roll out of bed in sweatpants, put on a hot pair of kicks and you'll look like a million bucks. Epitome, the new shoe boutique in Buckhead, puts luxury on its toes with its carefully curated selection of sneakers, heels and accessories. The store, which opened in July, is a culture clash of hip-hop high-tops, preppy boat shoes, indie gladiator sandals and party-girl pumps. Out-there selections like American flag platforms next to biker-chick heels may seem at odds, but somehow the mashup makes sense at Epitome. The lighted Plexiglas walkway gives the store a space-age vibe while sunglasses rest on pads of Astroturf. The future's so bright, we got to wear sneakers. 252 Pharr Road. 404-869-8700. epitomeatl.com. less...

Best CDs BOA Award Winner

Criminal Records


Best lingerie BOA Award Winner

Victoria's Secret & PINK
And other metro Atlanta locations

Best women's clothing store BOA Award Winner

free fab'rik Boutique
And other metro Atlanta locations

Best way to home hunt BOA Award Winner

ProMove

Best way to wear your art on your sleeve BOA Award Winner

Streetela
Street art: populist art form, nuisance to society or super cool fashion? Does art have to exist inside a gallery or museum to be legit? The artists collective Streetela has answered the latter question with a decisive "Hell no" by slapping drawings and paintings by local artists on T-shirts and sellingmore...
Street art: populist art form, nuisance to society or super cool fashion? Does art have to exist inside a gallery or museum to be legit? The artists collective Streetela has answered the latter question with a decisive "Hell no" by slapping drawings and paintings by local artists on T-shirts and selling them online. Some of the designs are twee, like a Wayne's World-inspired shirt and tote by Paper Twins, and others are edgy, like an Ola Bad design that looks like a wheat paste project on your chest. Right now, Streetela is only featuring artists who are participating in the Living Walls Conference, but come November, it'll be selling shirts by street artists from around the country. streetela.com. less...

Best bikini wax BOA Award Winner

Sweet Samba Wax & Sugar Bar
And other metro Atlanta locations

Best kids' clothing BOA Award Winner

Target
And other Metro Atlanta locations

Best hair Salon BOA Award Winner

Van Michael Salon
And other metro Atlanta locations

Best furniture store BOA Award Winner

IKEA

Best spa BOA Award Winner

Natural Body Spa and Shop
And other metro Atlanta locations

Best sporting goods BOA Award Winner

Dick's Sporting Goods

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