Best Of 2017

Best Bells on Her Fingers, Bells on Her Toes
Photo by Samantha Redding


Taking its name from the early-2000s coinage combining "gypsy" with "jet set" (cf. Julia Chaplin's coveted trilogy for publisher Assouline), Sam Redding's Gypset provides boho-chic adornment in a wide range of price points for both Coachella princesses and more-prim types. Go for a subtle turquoise cuff, or load up neck, wrists and ears with pieces dripping in geodes, quartz crystals, gemstones and rare hardwoods. Find the mobile boutique by following @gypsetco on Instagram or checking the website; Redding's adorable renovated trailer is posted outside East End Market for the month of August.

Best Home Decor
Photo by Bryan Soderlind

Hello Happy Plants

Anyone trying to turn a side hustle into a full-time job will find hope in Kelsey Ryder's hard work. She started off hawking plants in thrift store pots, but her online store, Hello Happy Plants, has blossomed into a full-grown business where she sells a variety of handcrafted planters (air plants included) in the colorful, cheeky shape of troll dolls, beer and soda cans, chip bags, cigarette boxes and much, much more. She ships to customers and wholesalers all over the world, in big part due to the following she's gained on her playful Instagram page.

Best Store We 
Wanna Live In
photo by Lindsey Thompson

The New General

155 E. New England Ave., Winter Park


The cool terrazzo floor ... the warm wood seating ... the poured-concrete tables ... the clean-lined garments in natural fibers: This place is heaven for minimalists who eschew frou-frou and loudness. The shop-slash-café offers handmade tableware, clogs from Brooklyn, natural skincare, fragrance, jewelry and a tightly edited rack of clothing for men and women, as well as iced lattes, cold brew, and delicious pastries, toasts and salads – and most of all, a calming start to the day.

Best Local Designer Boutique
Photo by Matthew Weller


647 N. Mills Ave.

Instagram: @a999shop

A welcome addition to our currently flourishing atmosphere of makers and designers is the A-Shop, which features internet-fabulous fashions for those who aren't afraid to make a statement. Vanessa Barros Andrade (aka DJ Deviant Art Heaux, aka Puffy Pain) hand-selects designers from L.A. to Hong Kong and curates a physical space where Orlando can interact with clothing usually only accessible online. The hours are very limited and still evolving and the space is very niche, but you might catch an impromptu DJ set or drag performance as you browse the one-of-a-kind wares.

Best G's

Galactic G Skateshop

2020 N. Orange Ave.


Keeping the flame alive: For 20 years, the shop has been introducing Orlando kids to the sport, and for that alone the owner deserves props. We wonder how many grown-ups got their first deck there, or signed up for their first class, or posted their first trick video clip ... it's gotta be thousands. Plus, it's the quickest place to grab a new pair of Vans and bypass mall madness

Best New Drug Dealer

Knox Dispensary

1901 N. Orange Ave.


We kid, we kid. Though still somewhat hamstrung by a web of legislative indecision regarding exactly what they can sell, the first legal medical marijuana dispensary just opened in the Ivanhood after much anticipation. Housed in an stark, bunker-esque storefront, once you get past the heavy (yet dapper) security, you're inside a clean, minimalist wonderland that's halfway between IKEA and an art film. Here's hoping the Florida Legislature decides to get with the times and implement the will of the people soon (full THC!).

Best Holiday Market

Pop-Up Tent Market at Redlight Redlight

2810 Corrine Drive


Head straight to the bar as soon as you walk in and grab a beer to fortify yourself as you stroll around the brewpub and the storage area in back; alcohol will grease your credit card for the impending retail romp. Find 25-plus artisans selling upcycled, homemade and rare gifts. Beer + shopping = holiday cheer.

Best Dirty Jokes
Photo by Jacki Mick

Fairvilla Megastore sign

1740 N. Orange Blossom Trail


The drive down OBT heading toward Apopka is boring and mundane, with little to see except for railroad tracks on one side and small warehouses surrounded by patchy grass on the other. But popping up among the humdrum is a sign that might make you whip your car around to read it again. The exterior of Fairvilla Megastore is pretty low-key unless you count the giant sign in front that often boasts sayings like "We would love to show you our rack – just ask us," "National Masturbation Month – don't forget to celebrate" or "Our rabbits will take you to a different wonderland." Fairvilla's allusions are more sexy snark than heavy innuendo, but either way, it's a nice way to break the tension with the cashier when you make your risqué purchases.

Best Knotty by Nature
Photo by Madison Hope Photography

Find Your Fiber

Sara Taylor's Find Your Fiber website offers pre-made macrame pieces, DIY kits and a schedule of monthly local workshops for those curious about string theory. But it's also got a healthy helping of you-go-girl attitude leavened with just enough vulnerability to not come across as annoying – much like her teaching persona in those workshops. Go on and gift yourself a few hours of using your fingers for something other than typing. You may find it soothes your heart as much as your brain.

Best Place to Swap Out Your Closet
Avalon Exchange

Avalon Exchange

745 N. Orange Ave., Winter Park


Most burgeoning cities have a lot of great options when it comes to fashion resale. So it's a good sign that Avalon Exchange, originally from Ohio, has opened their fifth location in the heart of Winter Park – now you can sell your threads to an audience that appreciates not only your eccentric style but also your thoughtful sustainability. They'll give you cash on-site, but chances are you won't make it out the door with it once you peek around at their incredible selection, so opt for the store credit. There's plenty of Supreme and Yeezy for your favorite hypebeast but also designer and professional gear for your friend with an actual job. Follow on Instagram if you're looking to secure Lululemon or American Apparel (RIP) before it hits the floor; that shit goes fast.