Best Costume Store
Headed to a Halloween party? Gatsby-era New Year’s Eve gala? Need an outrageous Bolder Boulder costume? Or, hey, maybe you just want to play dress-up! Make your first stop The Ritz. It’s like the childhood dress-up trunk of your dreams times 100. “We’re a Boulder tradition and are the first stop when Boulderites’ are putting together their costumes,” says Susan Nutting, the store’s owner. “We aim to please, featuring the wildest gamut of mild mannered to downright outrageous. There’s something for everyone and we can’t wait to help you find it.” But don’t wait until you need a costume to stop in; this Boulder store that’s been locally owned since 1977 doubles as a clothing boutique. 959 Walnut St. Boulder, 303.443.2850, theritzcostumes.com.
Runner Up: Theatrical Costumes, Etc!, 673 30th St., Boulder, 303.440.8515, theatricalcostumesetc.com.
Best Men’s Clothing Store
Weekends, one of the classiest clothing stores in Boulder, has witnessed the life cycle of many a business in its 28 years on the mall. Locally owned, Weekends continues to flourish by sticking with a formula that never seems to be wrong: They proudly offer a collection of the finest men’s and women’s contemporary casual clothing and footwear, premium denim lines, and locally designed and nationally recognized jewelry lines. That’s it! Men’s brands include Eton, Rag & Bone, Common Projects, Billy Reid, Boglioli and more. For the ladies: Herno, L’Agence, Hammitt, Moussy and more. Not quite sure what you’re after? You can schedule a consultation online and, for more fun, follow @weekendsboulder on Instagram and share your style with #weekendsboulder. 1200 Pearl St., Boulder, 303.444.4231, weekendsboulder.com.
Runner Up: The Regiment Shops of Colorado, 2425 Canyon Blvd., #F, Boulder, 303.443.2713, theregimentshops.com.
Best Shoe Store
Happy birthday, Pedestrian Shops! The shoe shop turned the big 5-0 this year. “My dad started selling Earth Shoes out of the back of a bookmobile in 1969,” says Lauren Polk Brown vice president of Pedestrian Shops. Now, she and her sister Zoe Polk manage day-to-day operations in the three stores, two in Boulder and one in Denver. Customers, she says, love that the store takes comfort so seriously. “We’re always on the lookout for new styles that fit into Coloradans’ active lives, can keep them feeling good through long days on their feet, and are in style, too,” Polk Brown says. She and her sister try to test out every new brand that Pedestrian Shops carry.
1425 Pearl St., Boulder, 303.449.5260; 2525 Arapahoe Ave., Boulder, 303.449.7440, comfortableshoes.com.
Runner Up: Two Sole Sisters, 1703 Pearl St., Boulder, 303.442.0404, twosolesisters.com.
Best Women-Owned Store AND Best Women’s Clothing Store
Barbara & Company
A small, locally-owned business, Barbara & Company strives to equip its customers with a wardrobe for “whatever and wherever life takes them,” says Owner Kathy King. “The Boulder woman travels and enjoys a casual lifestyle and wants clothing as unique as she is. We carry fashionable, high-quality lines that appeal to a wide range of ages. Our staff is committed to offering excellent customer service in a warm and friendly atmosphere.” Barbara & Company has updated its jewelry and accessory inventory and also added new display features and enhanced lighting for an even more pleasurable shopping experience. 1505 Pearl St., Boulder, 303.443.2565, barbaraandcompany.net.
Runner Up for Best Women-Owned Store: Sweet Ruckus, 607 S. Broadway, #F, Boulder, 303.494.5131, sweetruckusgifts.com.
Runner Up for Best Women’s Clothing Store: Jacque Michelle, 2670 Broadway, Boulder, 303.786.7628, jacquemichelle.com.