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Best of Indy 2016: Shops + Home

New Bookstore – Pen and Pink

With an eye for classic book art and the perfect accoutrements for your library or drawing room, Laura McPhee at Pen and Pink has been winning over the literary set online and at local art fairs for several years now. This July, she brought her growing collection of custom LP-bound notebooks, book-cover journals, and other literary bric-a-brac to a darling old house just steps from Garfield Park. Since then, she has been adding vintage sheet music, school posters, and antique bookends to her stock, not to mention hardbound editions from a host of onetime Hoosier publishers—an esoteric selection perfect for the discriminating reader. 2435 Shelby St., 317-372-6465,

Custom Clothier – Andrew Porter

Andrew Porter

Andrew Porter

Suit-maker Andrew Porter walks into a Chick-fil-A and introduces himself to author John Green. One remarks that their mutual friend, AJ Foyt IV, was going to put them in touch. Some time later, Green posts a photo of himself wearing a suit by Porter on Instagram that receives 67,000 likes. It’s that kind of word-of-mouth power that created Porter’s business, which includes clients like Gary Brackett, Yogi Ferrell, and Matt Hasselbeck. But you don’t have to have an athlete’s income to sport these duds—prices start at $675 for ready-made suits, while custom suits (think 25–30 measurements) go for $1,000–$3,000. 317-448-7681,

Art Supplies – Strumento Art Materials

Hiding in plain sight above the Art Bank Gallery on Mass Ave, Strumento Art Materials stocks a great selection of art supplies, including Golden water-based paints, Gamblin oils, and Canson paper. The inventory attracts downtown artists such as Kyle Ragsdale. Although a purchase comes with no guarantee that you’ll paint like him. 811 Massachusetts Ave., 317-624-1010,

Weekend Wear – Beauty + Grace

The feather chandeliers, velvet drapery, and chopped-up telephone poles give Beauty + Grace the edgy loveliness of a gallery space. But unlike a museum, this boutique invites you to touch—which is a good thing, since your fingers will gravitate to the chunky, oversized sweaters. Or the Sol Sana fur booties. Or the super-soft flannels. “You want to snuggle with everything,” says owner Jenni Myers, and she isn’t lying. It’s even easier to get cozy now that the Carmel business has added a holiday pop-up shop at the Fashion Mall. Carmel City Center, 317-564-0687,

Leather Handbags – Leather Feather Stone

In the nimble hands of Brooke Lindemann, the Noblesville woman behind Leather Feather Stone, some of the finest hides in the country get transformed into sculpture masquerading as handbags. Using a simple sewing awl, the self-taught bag designer stitches animal skins sourced from Indy’s Landwerlen Leather Co. and Horween, a Chicago tannery that’s among the oldest in the country. Among our favorites are her gorgeously crackled burnt-sienna envelope clutch ($248), apple-green crossbody with an oversized (and on-trend) tassel ($128), and pearly white wristlet ($98). You can almost smell the leather at her Etsy store.

Local Fitness Line – Après Sweat

Yoga teacher Jessica Gershman has seen every yoga pant imaginable—the good, the bad, and the ugly. The result? Inspiration to launch Après Sweat, her own luxury athletic line. Designed by Gershman and manufactured in L.A., the “anti-cellulite” leggings are the stars of the show, with three style variations, embellished with details like golden zippers, vegan leather trim, and monochrome contrast panels. The clothing, which ranges from $60–$180, also includes off-the-shoulder tops, racerback tanks, and headbands.

Postcards – Indygenouspostcards

Steve Schubert loves writing postcards, but couldn’t find any great ones representing Indy when he moved here eight years ago. So the high school teacher took a few Adobe Illustrator classes, and decided to make his own. Unlike many local designs on the market, Schubert’s gorgeous Indygenous postcards are neighborhood-specific: Garfield Park, Lockerbie Square, the Monon Trail. And it’s easy to spot his love of propaganda art from the WWII era in his work, even as he expands to science-fiction themes in newer collections.

Personal Stylist – The Closet Therapist

Give Shannon Floyd  (a.k.a. The Closet Therapist) an hour with your wardrobe, and she’ll change your life—or at least your look. Having spent years as a personal shopper at Anthropologie and J. Crew, Floyd now runs her own business and specializes in mixing and matching fashions clients already own. The Indiana native spent years living abroad, bringing back a European sensibility that informs her style. Just ask Tracy Stevens (wife of former Butler coach Brad Stevens), a Closet Therapist client and stylish woman if ever there was one. 317-709-3513, Facebook: The Closet Therapist is IN 

Recycled Wallets – Sun King

Joining People for Urban Progress ’s popular line of wallets made from the Hoosier Dome roof fabric, these Sun King banners-turned-billfolds are worth pulling $42 out of your old one to buy. Repurposed from the brewery’s vinyl signage, the colorful additions to Sun King’s merchandise rack are sure to be a hit on the beer- festival circuit. 135 N. College Ave., 317-602-3702,

New Home Store – Urban Underpriced

There’s only one place in town where you’ll find a traditional sectional sofa, a faux-fur-covered indoor swing, and a 5-foot-long alligator replica in one room. At Urban Underpriced, variety is the key to its charm. Owned by Indy native Fred Isaac, the store feels like a mash-up of flea market and fine-furnishings store. French country pieces sit next to midcentury finds, topped with tchotchkes that would be at home in your grandma’s living room. And somehow, this turns out to be a good thing. 5602 Castleton Corner, 317-578-7220,

Dog Crates – Salvage 3

There’s almost nothing Jason Kersh of Salvage 3 can’t make from reclaimed wood: coffee tables, growler carriers, outdoor bars. To the delight of pet owners everywhere, though, he has been spending a lot of his time lately on sleek, modern dog crates. These things are pretty enough to take center stage in any discriminating decorator’s space, and double as end tables, television stands, and breakfast nook cabinets. Stylish dog sold separately. 1413 E. Naomi St. (by appt. only), 317-652-6344, Facebook: Salvage 3

Online Clothing Boutique  – Halfsiesonlineboutique

If the kids staring back at you from the online boutique Halfsies wear nicer clothes than you do, blame Mallory Talty and Siggi Bennett. The business partners affectionately refer to their tiny models as half-sized people, worthy of the trendy duds their parents love. The two sell brands that would be right at home at the next Pattern launch party. Talty says her current favorite is Mummy Moon, a durable line of avant-garde threads. Look for original designs from Talty and Bennett in 2017.

Homestore Expansion – Haus Lovehomestore

Interior designer Heidi Woodman traces her affinity for large-scale pieces of home decor back to art school, where she came to believe that bigger is better. The same theory applies to her studio/store, Haus Love, which for years split its floor space between furniture and clothing. This year, out went the threads as the SoBro showroom transitioned to decor and tabletop only. Now it’s more tempting than ever to sink into one of the Cisco couches from California ($2,000 and up), crack open one of the novelty books the store sells (Crap Taxidermy), and pretend this Scandinavian-inflected layout of dreamy neutrals, layered textures, and modern lighting is home. Just don’t relax so much that you prop your feet up on the feather pillow from Dransfield & Ross—it costs $865. 5901 N. College Ave., 317-601-6521,

New Gift Shop – Decorate

With a high-end inventory of urban products from the likes of Kate Spade, Chilewich, and Matt and Nat, Decorate on Mass Ave is a go-to shop for housewarming gifts. Owned by Amy Minick Peterson (wife of former mayor Bart Peterson), the boutique features edgy artwork, locally made pottery, funky furniture, and textiles. You know, the stuff you buy for yourself when you’re out shopping for someone else. 716 Massachusetts Ave., 317-737-2109,

Expensive Sneakers – Luxury Sneaker Exchange

Former Pacers guard Fred Jones and his business partner Carl Bradley weren’t fooling around when they chose the name for their Mass Ave shoe store,  The Luxury Sneaker Exchange. Bestsellers include Yeezys, which go for around $1,000, and the shop has Air Jordan Oregon 5s on display, valued at $9,000 (although those aren’t for sale). Since the polished storefront opened last year, pro athletes such as former Pacers center Ian Mahinmi have stopped in to look over the wide selection of sizes (up to 18) and distinctive footwear, like the Air Jordan 10 Retro OVO ($600–$700), rapper Drake’s signature pair. If you need those kicks cleaned, the LSE will be happy to spiff them up (assuming you can foot the $20 bill). 421 Massachusetts Ave., 317-340-1954,

Greenery Guru – Jess Parrotte

Jess Parrotte isn’t your typical gardener. When she started her business, The Planter, one of her early experiments was repurposing porcelain baby doll heads as pots for succulents. They sold out as fast as she could make them, so other unexpected choices followed, including plants in old toy cars and coffee cans. When those pieces showed up in restaurants such as Milktooth, diners began asking where to get them. Parrotte now does terrariums for clients who want to bring the outdoors in, but are missing a green thumb. Just don’t expect a nice ficus in a clay pot. 9 Lives Vintage booth at Midland Arts & Antiques Market, 907 E. Michigan St., 317-306-9600

Home Renovation Experts – Good Bones

When Mina Starsiak and her mom Karen Laine started rehabbing houses in Fountain Square in 2007, a television show about their efforts must have seemed as likely as finding gold in the walls. But HGTV saw something in the duo, and their reality show Good Bones enters its second season in 2017. We knocked on Starsiak’s door and asked for advice on a few common home-remodeling projects.

Living Rooms

“If possible, get rid of all existing texture. Textured walls and ceilings date a home and make the room look busy. Nice, smooth ceilings and walls are the best start. When it comes to picking a light fixture, don’t only think of form. Get something beautiful, but also something that meets your actual lighting needs. Inhabit (211 S. Ritter Ave., 317-636-1699, always has fun, funky lights and other great home items.”


“Remember, this is the room you most want to relax in. So keep it simple. We like neutral, calm paint colors from Fusek’s Hardware (350 E. New York St., 317-636-7377, If you’re looking for accents, Chatham Home (517 E. Walnut St., 317-917-8550, has some beautiful ones. As for light fixtures, go with a fan-light combo for this room. Who doesn’t love a good breeze and some white noise while they sleep?”


“Stick with timeless colors for most of the room and save the bright accents for interchangeable items like shower curtains. Lee Supply (6610 Guion Rd., 317-290-2500, is an awesome place for bathroom fixtures. Our biggest remodeling secret is Blooming Deals (4005 Madison Ave., 812-249-5268, You can get gorgeous vanities at half-price. They also have tons of light fixtures, mirrors, and much more.”


With so many places selling yoga pants these days, it’s tough to tell one store from the next. But it’s no stretch to say these shops have distinguished themselves.

Lululemon Athletica

This international chain offers free classes to help you justify your next big splurge. Fashion Mall, 317-844-5235,


Founded by former Nike executives, this shop carries lines designed by women runners, yogis, and trainers. Fashion Mall, 317-218-4983,


Created using earth-friendly processes, Athleta’s clothing keeps the planet fit as well as your waistline. Fashion Mall, 317-844-5718,


The yoga studio carries lines like Spiritual Gangster as well as skincare products by Eva Maison. 970 Ft. Wayne Ave., 317-631-9642,

Love Your Body

In addition to leggings and tank tops, this newcomer offers non-athleisure apparel. 1726 E. 86th St., 317-663-8440,




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