Please, no parkas yet 

Ease into fall shopping over Labor Day.

THERAPEUTIC: Artisans gallery.
  • THERAPEUTIC: Artisans gallery.

Whoever decided Labor Day was the official end of summer clearly didn’t live anywhere near here. Usually I can’t stomach even looking at any fall clothing for another six weeks, much less actually buying anything. Summer ends around Halloween as far as I’m concerned.

But I may have to make an exception this year. I dropped by Attitudes and Latitudes, a Heights boutique I somehow had never been in before — tragically, it turns out, because it’s got clothing above size 0 and plenty of prices in the mid-double digits, neither of which is particularly common in the neighborhood. Anyway. I went in to check out their summer clearance racks (they’re thinning out, but still worth investigating), and instead found myself standing in front of a very cute, very reasonably priced Fresh Produce dark-khaki corduroy skirt ($48). Had a little ruffle around the hem, but it’s corduroy, so the girly factor is minimized. Plus, with bare legs and a short-sleeve shirt, it wouldn’t even be that hot.

Back to those clearance racks: Some nice flowy linen pants and tank tops, junior skirts, etc. There’s also a 40 percent off back-to-school sale on a selection of Lucy Love juniors clothes. Call before you go this weekend, though — they may be taking the holiday off.

Speaking of the holiday, it’s bringing us two new stores — one in Hillcrest and the other in North Little Rock’s equivalent, Park Hill.

First up, Retail Therapy opens Saturday, Sept. 2, in that new brick building on Beechwood right behind the Afterthought, just a few feet off Kavanaugh. Owner Martha Hendrix describes it as an “artisans’ gallery” — it carries the kind of hand-made objects you’d find at a crafts guild show. Big soft-sided woven baskets, fused and stained glass, pottery, jewelry, hand-painted silk scarves, carved wood pieces, etc.

“It’s a pretty wide, eclectic variety,” Hendrix said. “I think anyone that came in would find something.” Prices average about $40 to $50, and the hours are 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, with Sunday afternoon hours added during the holiday season.

On the other side of the river, Lads and Ladybugs, a higher-end children’s specialty store, opens Tuesday, Sept. 5, in the former home of the Bridal Cottage on JFK Boulevard. (The Bridal Cottage moved a couple doors down awhile back.) The store will carry hardwood baby furniture (Bratt Décor, Morigeau LePine), crib bedding, clothing for infants and toddlers (Bunnies by the Bay, Piccadilly Kids and Josie Kats Trunk, among other lines), and baby gift items. Co-owner Robin Koch said they’ll have a grand-opening celebration, with special promotions, on Sept. 15-16, but no harm in scouting out the merchandise ahead of time. Also, for the month of September, purchase a crib and they’ll throw in the mattress for free. They’ll open at 10 a.m. Monday through Saturday, but Koch said they hadn’t decided yet when they’ll close on weekdays. (Saturday hours end at 4 p.m.)

And now, my final tidbit ever about the Design Center. Its last day of business is Saturday, Sept. 2, and whatever’s left — including fixtures — will be sold on a make-an-offer basis. I dropped by late last week and pickings were pretty slim, but there was still enough to justify the trip. Word is Cobblestone and Vine will be expanding into the Design Center’s space.

I’ve got something in my eye.



From the ArkTimes store



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