Best of Atlanta 2018: Style & Design

Best of Atlanta 2018: Gucci

Photograph courtesy of Gucci

Best new luxury store: Gucci

The Italian luxury brand revamped its Phipps Plaza store this fall to reflect the travel-themed vision of its creative director, Alessandro Michele. That vision includes more than 4,500 square feet of velvet armchairs, leather trunks, and colorful fabrics in reds, pinks, and blues—as well as its wide-ranging collection of men’s and women’s ready-to-wear, shoes, leather goods, and jewelry.

Best athleisure makeover: Deka Society

After shuttering its Shops Around Lenox location three years ago, Deka Society rebranded and returned to Buckhead this summer with the usual athletic staples—sports bras, tanks, and leggings—as well as expanded athleisure offerings, including cashmere sweaters from Chinti and Parker and furry slippers from Roam.

Best of Atlanta 2018: Kellogg Rye

Photograph by Raymond McCrea Jones

Best trend-picker: Mandy Kellogg Rye

Social media guru Mandy Kellogg Rye scoops up consistently fashion-forward finds for Waiting on Martha, her six-year-old ecommerce site, and her newer Vinings boutique. Whether it’s portable cocktail kits, resin napkin rings, or pillows and paintings by artists in residence, Rye’s shop, Waiting on Martha HOME, always feels of-the-moment.

Best new retail store: Ballard Designs

Last summer, the locally based online retailer moved its flagship store to a 20,000-square-foot space at the new Works at Chattahoochee, which allows for much more furniture on display. Hardware, fabrics, and wallpaper mingle with outdoor, plum designer collabs, and seasonal decor.

Best goodies to go: The Front Porch Market

Three years after opening her home-and-gift emporium, the Front Porch of Vinings, next to Old Vinings Inn, owner Lisa Rieves has expanded into the little house behind it. The new general store–like space is stocked with colorful stationery, Barr Co. beauty products, small works by local artists, and edible Southern staples such as cheese straws, biscuits, pies, and pickles. Locally prepared foods can be picked up inside or, if after hours, from old-school lockers out back.

Best window shopping: Peoples

Curation is key at this Buckhead boutique, where clothes hang pristinely like artworks on a handful of racks in a spare and minimalistic space. Those with the budget to snap up the tops, dresses, and other pieces from high-end labels such as Chloe and Stella McCartney will surely enjoy Peoples, but the store’s modern design and impressive roster of brands make it plenty enjoyable for window shoppers, too. 404-816-7292

Best of Atlanta 2018: Pollen

Photograph by Cori Carter

Best botanical inspiration: Pollen

For 15 years, husband-and-wife Chris Condon and Bonnie Garrison have created eccentric, original arrangements, often with rustic touches and exotic blooms, for Atlanta’s most fashionable floraphiles. But a recent reno has allowed them to add more home decor like ’70s-inspired jute floor mats and hand-thrown vessels by Barb Williams.

Draper James Reese Witherspoon Atlanta
Draper James at Shops Around Lenox

Photograph courtesy of Draper James

Best celebrity fashion label: Draper James

Fashion lines have become the expansion du jour for celebrities, but Tennessee-raised Reese Witherspoon’s Draper James actually feels like a natural fit in the style capital of the South. At her Buckhead Atlanta location, shoppers will find blouses and dresses in floral, geometric, and animal prints and gem-tone shades. There’s also an expansive collection of home decor, goods, and accessories emblazoned with Southern slang like “Howdy.”

Best finds for francophiles: Huff Harrington Home

Meg Harrington and Ann Huff’s eponymous home store remains a go-to for French-sourced decor. In fact, Huff has a pied-a-terre in Paris, and the co-owners offer guided buying trips to France. Mixed in with Continental antiques, find stylish pillows from Ivy & Vine, unique jewelry, of-the-moment coffee-table tomes, and an exclusive line of bedsheets (complete with embroidered Eiffel Towers).

Best of Atlanta 2018: The Merchant

Photograph by Caroline C. Kilgore

Best gift shop: The Merchant at Lenox Square

Even without an occasion, it’s fun to hunt for gifts at the Lenox Square location of owner Daniel Collier’s the Merchant, which also has a Krog Street outpost. A bonus at the mall is Collier’s new coffee shop downstairs. Sip a Stumptown espresso while browsing a well-curated selection of the shop’s stationery, art prints, and cheeky gifts.

Best modern heirloom furniture: Holland MacRae

Having moved a few doors down from its former ADAC digs, Holland MacRae continues to offer exquisite wood furniture, benchmade in England by generational craftsmen. A coffee bar and courtyard make the stately showroom a convivial place for folks to gather while perusing a larger-than-ever selection of Lee upholstery (like architect Bobby McAlpine’s signature pieces for the brand) and rooms dedicated to designers’ signature furniture collections, including those by Atlanta’s own Barbara Westbrook and Robert Brown.

Best locally made accessories: Two Twisted Sistahs

Founded by two sisters (one based in Atlanta, the other in Virginia), this local accessories brand offers handmade leather pouches, jewelry, and hair pieces that stand out for their bold, colorful patterns, including hot pink python headbands and tangerine, crocheted, leather hoop earrings.

Best midcentury finds: Highland Row Antiques

Resourceful weekend pickers with the inside scoop have known for years to hit the monthly markets at Highland Row. This first-Saturday event is not a sale, as many assume, but an opportunity for several of owner Angela Carbon Baker’s vendors to roll out their latest finds from midcentury-modern masters like Herman Miller, Jens Risom, and Knoll.

Serena & Lily
Serena & Lily

Photograph courtesy of Serena & Lily

Best coastal style: Serena & Lily

Last year, Serena & Lily’s arrival in Atlanta was like a breath of fresh air. Capturing the Sausalito-based company’s beachy, breezy aesthetic, the Westside Provisions boutique is filled with the brand’s signature cafe chairs, slipcovered upholstery, shell-inlaid lamps, block prints, palm motifs, and all the rattan we could ever want.

Best new independent boutique: Megan Huntz

This fall, local designer Megan Huntz opened her flagship brick-and-mortar store near the corner of North and North Highland avenues. With white walls and elegant, thin racks suspended from the ceiling, the boutique has the same sophisticated minimalism as her clothing: raw silk and linen dresses, blouses, and pants in neutrals and bright colors.

Best of Atlanta 2018: Made Goods

Photograph courtesy of Made Goods

Best new showroom: Made Goods

Los Angeles–based Made Goods already had a wholesale showroom at AmericasMart downtown, but its new ADAC outpost, which debuted in April, marks the brand’s largest, clocking in at nearly 6,000 square feet. All the better to showcase recent arrivals like the midcentury-inspired Adali credenza and the Regina coffee table made of speckled black and white terrazzo. Don’t miss the mix-and-match dinnerware from Blue Pheasant and high-end bath accessories from Pigeon & Poodle.

Best children’s clothing: Mitylene

This shop is filled with eclectic and colorful solutions for parents in search of pieces with the same attention to design normally afforded to adults—but in sizes small enough for babies and kids. From rainbow tees by Aviator Nation, a 1970s-inspired California brand, to the Scandinavian-inspired floral tops by Christina Rohde, Mitylene offers plenty for fashion-forward youth.

Best new tabletop: Coton Colors

Laura Johnson is the founding artist and CEO of Tallahassee-based Coton Colors, a home decor line known best for its “Happy Everything” platters, with interchangeable attachments to mark specific occasions. Her niece Taylor Gwynn opened the Atlanta flagship a year ago. The Buckhead boutique is brimming with entertaining-friendly collections of plates, pitchers, and platters in eye-catching colors and patterns that can be easily mixed, matched, and monogrammed. Minimalists will appreciate the elegant all-white collection.

Best men’s shirts: Peter Millar

The brand’s first standalone location in Georgia, this Avalon outpost carries dress shirts, cashmere sweaters, pants, sports coats, and more in a broad range of colors (e.g. “radish pink”) uncommon for menswear. The pieces are inspired by European design with a focus on fit and tailoring.

Best DIY studio: Topstitch Studio and Lounge

After six years of frequenting fabric stores while living in London, Leigh Metcalf longed to fill a void she found when she moved back home. Her Ponce City Market–based workshop emulates her favorites from across the pond, stocking Liberty prints, indigo ikats, and other creative fabrics. Plus, find legitimately cool dress patterns, embroidery kits, colorful scissors, and unusual notions.

Best of Atlanta 2018: Coco Mischa

Photograph by Caroline C. Kilgore

Best store expansion: Coco + Mischa

Launched in 2015 as a pop-up in Decatur, Coco + Mischa moved earlier this year into Ponce City Market, where shoppers can find an expanded collection of colorful and patterned vintage fashion, handmade jewelry, and other accessories—all curated with a slow fashion focus.

Best expansion: Verde Home

Long revered for its selection of high-quality and custom rugs, upholstery, and the most attractive recliners we’ve ever laid eyes on, Verde Home expanded into Steve McKenzie’s former space in May, painted it a moody gray (it’s the only non–paint store in town to carry Farrow & Ball), and welcomed new lines like Selamat, Copeland Furniture, and Avasa hand-embroidered bedding.

Best 360 style: Brick + Mortar

For one-of-a-kind pieces, there’s no better shop than Westside Provision District’s Brick + Mortar. Founder David Kowalski regularly peruses estate sales to find the antique leather chairs, vintage Georgia maps, and found objects that line his store. Also of note: Brick + Mortar’s eponymous candle collection, in scents like campfire and citrus, are handmade in Atlanta.

Best of Atlanta 2018: Walters

Photograph by Cori Carter

Best kicks: Walter’s Clothing

Don’t let the store name fool you: While Walter’s Clothing does indeed offer clothing for men and women, the shop’s sneaker collection is the standout here, from classic styles like the FILA “OG” 96 to new releases from Nike, Reebok, and more. Founder Walter Strauss, who escaped Nazi Germany before opening his business, died in July, but his downtown store remains an Atlanta institution.

Best invite-only shopping experience: Shoppe Native

What began as a casual event hosted by two Grant Park women (Alison Fandel and Alyssa Cassatto) to show off unique, local wares has turned into a must-get-an-invite house party that puts your mom’s Tupperware shindigs to shame. The stylish set features favorite Atlanta artisans like Connie N’ Jack (jewelry), Charlotte Smith (ceramics), and the Victorian Atlanta (plants), with drinks and snacks at a chic pop-up shop. Invitation only, but follow @connienjack or @alifandel for intel.

Best site to browse with a bourbon: Dixon Rye Online

This new Southern-rustic online shop captures the same handsome, hospitable vibe we love about Bradley Odom’s West Midtown brick and mortar. Live since September, the ecommerce site is the place for expertly curated wares like Brancusi-esque tabletop sculpture, vintage kilims, solid hardwood chests, handmade Moroccan pottery, saddle-stitched leather sling chairs, John Derian decoupage, original art, and luxurious Astier de Villatte candles.

Best art with a heart: Atlanta Artist Collective

This online collective carries works by popular local artists like Carrie Penley, Winston Wiant, and Lisa Gleim, with many created around a group-chosen monthly theme and all accessibly priced between $70 and $2,700. This year, owner Laine Kilburn also opened a small gallery in Gregg Irby Gallery’s former spot behind Sardis Methodist Church. As always, five percent of sales are donated to area nonprofits.

Best way to make your artwork shine: Myott Studio + Artifacts

When Myott Studio acquired Artifacts a few years ago, the pair of masterful custom framers became the dream team for Atlanta artists, gallerists, collectors, designers, and everyday folk with good taste. Their client roster ranges from the High Museum and Mason Fine Art to Elton John and Tyler Perry Studios, but walk-ins are welcome and prices are surprisingly reasonable.

Best of Atlanta 2018: River Mint Finery

Photograph courtesy of River Mint Finery

Best women’s contemporary collection: River Mint Finery

Cindy Joffe originally cofounded this Peachtree Battle shop to sell accessories like Avindy, the jewelry line she started with her mother nearly 20 years ago. The shop has quietly ramped up its women’s clothing offerings over the last year to boast one of the best collections in the city. Look for KES little black dresses, jumpsuits from 7115 by Szeki, and Coclico boots, among other pieces from hard-to-find designers.

Greatest hits

Best cocktail attire

Best vintage and resale

Best women’s shoes

Best athleisure

Best retail fabric
Lewis & Sheron Textiles

Best his and hers
Sid and Ann Mashburn

Best euro chic
Switch Modern

Best baby apparel
Baby Braithwaite

Best men’s fashion on a budget

Best jewelry
Young Blood

Best made in the U.S.A.
Room & Board

Best midcentury vintage
City Issue

Best outdoor furniture
Kolo Collection

Best glam decor
Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams

Best local furniture store
Mathews Furniture + Design

Best classic furnishings
Bungalow Classic

Best specialty plants

Best home accessories
B.D. Jeffries

Check out our other Best of Atlanta 2018 winners:
Food & Drink

Beauty & Fitness
Arts & Culture
City Life