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Massachusetts Shopping

Alison Shaw Gallery
88 Dukes County Avenue
Oak Bluffs , Massachusetts
02557
Tel: 508 696 7429
alisonshawgallery.com

In this small converted fire station, just outside the center of Oak Bluffs, the island's personable star photographer, Alison Shaw, exhibits her dazzling images of island scenes in weekly revolving shows based on colors or other themes (food, for instance). Since her studio is right upstairs, she'll often come to the door to show you around herself.

Alley's General Store
State Road
West Tisbury , Massachusetts
02575
Tel: 508 693 0088

The oldest operating retail business on Martha's Vineyard, this authentic New England general store occupies a restored 1858 building operated by the Martha's Vineyard Preservation Trust. It's bursting with upscale foods to stock your cottage or your picnic basket. And even if you don't need a scrub brush or a book for the beach, stop in for a cup of coffee and take a seat on the porch. The crowded bulletin boards are the first place to look for notices about area events and activities.

Black Ink

Black Ink started out by selling only rubber stamps and papers. But it has since expanded into an eclectic "design laboratory," with floor-to-ceiling shelves full of industrial products, Japanese trinkets, card and board games from your childhood, finger puppets, coffee mugs, origami kits, brainteasers, and other imaginative stuff you never knew you needed.—Jon Marcus

Charles Street location: Open Mondays through Saturdays 11 am to 7 pm, Sundays noon to 6. Harvard Square location: Open Mondays through Saturdays 10 am to 8 pm, Sundays 11 am to 7 pm.

CB Stark Jewelers
53A Main Street
Vineyard Haven , Massachusetts
02568
Tel: 508 693 2284
cbstark.com

This jewelry shop got the jump on the charm-bracelet craze—by about four decades. The glass cases here are filled with elegant gold and silver charms in island-themed shapes (scallop shells, starfish, sand dollars, beach umbrellas) and toggle-linked chains to hang them on. Guys can choose from natty cuff links shaped like lighthouses, bluefish, and ferryboats. There's also a small branch in Edgartown (27 North Water St.; 508-627-1260).

Charles Street

With its cobbled-brick sidewalk and gas-gone-electric street lamps, you can almost imagine Paul Revere strolling down Charles Street. Adding to the historic ambiance are a plethora of antiques shops. The name says it all at Danish Country European & Asian Antiques: You'll find Royal Copenhagen china, 18th- and 19th-century Scandinavian hutches, and antique Chinese furniture (no. 138; 617-227-1804; europeanstyleantiques.com). At Twentieth Century Limited, hunt for treasures in the $10 costume-jewelry bins or splurge on vintage earrings, tiaras, or cuff links (1,250 pairs!) in the packed display cases (no. 73; 617-742-1031; www.boston-vintagejewelry.com). Eugene Galleries Inc stocks worn leather-bound reference books, ancient postcards, and dated maps (no. 76; 617-227-3062). Of course, with the old comes the new, and Charles Street has seen its fair share of modern boutiques. Wish (no. 49; 617-227-4441), Moxie (no. 51; 617-557-9991; www.moxieboston.com), and the East Coast outpost of Holiday (no. 53; 617-973-9730; www.holidayboutique.net) all vie for the affluent trendsetters who aren't afraid to drop a couple hundred dollars on a Tory Burch tunic. You'll also find cutting-edge objets, from Tord Boontje paper lamp shades at Koo de Kir (65 Chestnut St.; 617-723-8111; www.koodekir.com) to John Derian's découpaged dishware at Good (no. 88; 617-722-9200; www.shopatgood.com).

The Closet
175 Newbury Street
Boston , Massachusetts
02115
Tel: 617 536 1919
closetboston.com

The Closet is one of several Newbury Street shops leading the recent fashion for vintage and consignment clothing. The finds may include vintage Dior bags, contemporary Chloé clothing, and jewelry reminiscent of your grandmother's heirlooms—the sort of stuff that was purchased in the much more expensive Newbury boutiques, worn once to a charity ball, and passed along to the very picky buyers here.—Jon Marcus

Open Tuesdays through Thursdays 10 am to 6 pm, Sundays by chance.

Crush
131 Charles Street
Boston , Massachusetts
02114
Tel: 617 720 0010
shopcrushboutique.com

Opened by childhood friends in their 20s who quit jobs in PR and finance to indulge their fashion obsessions, Crush sells women's clothing, accessories, shoes, and handbags selected with its founders' youthful tastes and passions in mind. Designers represented include up-and-comers such as Charlie Jade, Chelsea Flower, and Daughters of the Revolution as well as established style-setters like Alice + Olivia, J Brand, and House of Harlow. How girlie is this place? Britney Spears shops here.—Jon Marcus

Open Mondays through Saturdays 10 am to 7 pm, Sundays noon to 6 pm.

Current Vintage
4 Easy Street
Nantucket , Massachusetts
02554
Tel: 508 228 5073

The unique combination of wine (bottles start at a bargain $10) and vintage women's clothing and accessories has made Current Vintage the talk of the town since it opened in the former Juice Guys space on Easy Street. You'll find clothing from Lilly Pulitzer—the unofficial designer of Nantucket—Hermès, and Missoni, as well as designer bags and shoes by the likes of Halston, Pucci, Manolo Blahnik, and Prada. The wines, priced up to $175 a bottle, are displayed with recommended food pairings; some are off local wine lists, and there's an "American Seasons Collection" of wines that work well with locally grown, seasonal dishes, in collaboration with the restaurant American Seasons. Current Vintage also sells sparkling sake and craft beer, and stays open until 11 pm in the summer for wandering visitors who find most other stores on the island shuttered by early evening.

Danish Country European & Asian Antiques
138 Charles Street
Boston , Massachusetts
02114
Tel: 617 227 1804
europeanstyleantiques.com

The standout on a street of antique shops, Danish Country European & Asian Antiques carries a curious combination of Royal Copenhagen china, 18th- and 19th-century Scandinavian hutches, and the antique Chinese lacquered furniture you may have admired in your hotel's lobby. (It might also look familiar from the cover of House Beautiful.) The shop is tiny but holds a surprisingly large collection to check out and maybe even ship home.—Jon Marcus

Open Mondays through Wednesdays 10 am to 6 pm, Thursdays 10 am to 5 pm, Fridays and Saturdays 10 am to 5 pm, Sundays 1 to 5 pm.

David Chase
60 Main Street
Nantucket , Massachusetts
02554
Tel: 508 325 8678
www.davidchasenantucket.com

Longtime Nantucketers might balk at the idea of Jimmy Choos and Piazza Sempione on Main Street (just a stone's throw from Murray's, no less!). But today's vacationing gals who need something to wear to LoLa 41 know to come here. The helpful (okay, slightly pushy) salespeople busily ferry Etro separates, Loro Piana blouses, Cambio jeans, and even matching handbags to the dressing rooms to put together the perfect outfit.

Dress
221 Newbury Street
Boston , Massachusetts
02116
Tel: 617 424 7125
dressboston.com

Yes, Dress sells dresses, but also all kinds of other high-end classic and contemporary women's clothing, shoes, handbags, and jewelry. The international lineup of designers includes Yumi Kim, Leigh & Luca, Vanessa Bruno, Loeffler Randall, and MiH Jeans. The sales staff are helpful yet unobtrusive.—Jon Marcus

Open Mondays through Thursdays 11 am to 7 pm, Fridays and Saturdays 11 am to 6 pm, Sundays noon to 5 pm.

Edgartown Scrimshaw Gallery
43 Main Street
Edgartown , Massachusetts
02539
Tel: 508 627 9439

The art of scrimshaw—etching delicate, highly detailed pictures onto pieces of ivory—was popularized by sailors looking for ways to while away the months at sea aboard 19th-century whaling ships. Despite the ban on ivory, artisans, like gallery owner Thomas DeMont keep the craft alive. DeMont's painstaking etchings of square-riggers and seascapes (all made on fossilized, decades-old ivory or bone) as well as works by other contemporary scrimshaw artists and a few antique pieces on sperm-whale teeth fill the showcases here.

Open May through December and occasional Saturdays in the off-season.

Eugene Galleries
76 Charles Street
Boston , Massachusetts
02114
Tel: 617 227 3062
eugenegalleries.com

Eugene Galleries is the perfect place to pick up some authentic souvenirs you can afford. It's obsessively organized (in alphabetical order, of all things), so you're bound to find a subject of interest—old maps, etchings, prints, newspapers, magazine advertisements, photographs, lithographs, leather-bound books, postcards, watercolors—for yourself or a loved one who didn't get to travel to Boston with you.—Jon Marcus

Open Mondays through Saturdays 11 am to 6 pm, Sundays noon to 6 pm.

Good
88 Charles Street
Boston , Massachusetts
02114
Tel: 617 722 9200
shopatgood.com

The name of this shop is an understatement. Good models itself after an art gallery, changing its look and inventory every few months. But you'll always find retro and antique home goods, furniture, ceramics, glassware, and an extraordinary collection of one-of-a-kind gifts, like hand-hammered gold earrings or cuff links made of old subway tokens and typewriter keys. It's all about modern and minimalist design in everyday life—and now that Good has begun commissioning artists to make items exclusively for the shop, the offerings are more unique than ever.—Jon Marcus

Open Mondays through Fridays 11 am to 7 pm, Saturdays 10 am to 6 pm, Sundays noon to 5 pm.

Granary Gallery
636 Old County Road
West Tisbury , Massachusetts
02575
Tel: 508 693 0455
granarygallery.com

Housed in a restored grain-storage barn, the Granary Gallery displays a captivating collection of art by artists with connections to the island. There are signed black-and-white prints by Alfred Eisenstadt, the Life photographer who held his first commercial show here, and works by muralist and painter Thomas Hart Benton, who summered on the Vineyard as an adult. Among the others on display are island photographer Alison Shaw; summer resident and extraordinary super-realist Heather Nell; and Scott Terry, a commercial striped-bass fisherman, who paints brilliantly colored oils of Vineyard scenes. Prices range from $250 to $250,000, and the antiques that decorate the gallery are also for sale (as is a small selection of new handcrafted jewelry). Openings of new shows are held every other week in an open courtyard behind the barn (check the Web site for info). But what really sets the Granary apart are its owners, Chris and Sheila Morse, who are as friendly and unpretentious as they are knowledgeable, although the off-street parking helps too. The Morses also run the Field Gallery in West Tisbury, which has more contemporary art and sculpture than the Granary (1050 State Rd.; 508-693-5595; fieldgallery.com), and the North Water Gallery in Edgartown, with more traditional works (27 North Water St.; 508-627-6002; northwatergallery.com).

Haberdashery of New England
9 Centre Street
Nantucket , Massachusetts
02554
Tel: 508 228 2100
littlemissdrama.com

The refined European clothing here (for men and women) manages to look breezy and casual: Swiss broadcloth shirts by Bruli come in crisp tattersall and awning stripes; Della Ciana pastel cashmere sweaters are whisper-light; Luciano Barbera tailored pants and Bermuda shorts would look at home at the yacht club. Just try to swallow that gasp when you see the price tags.

Holiday
53 Charles Street
Boston , Massachusetts
02114
Tel: 617 973 9730
www.holidayboutique.net

Modeled after the interior of an antique dollhouse, Holiday is a decidedly feminine playground for trendsetting women who don't mind dropping a couple of hundred dollars on a Tory Burch tunic or taking a chance on an up-and-coming fashion house. It also has its own brand, called "Pretty Little Thing," of handmade dresses, skirts, tops, and cashmere, and a vintage corner. Like the decor, the service is deliberately old-fashioned, but the selection includes decidedly modern looks from designers such as AKA, Eryn Brinie, JBrand, Kirribilla, T-Bags, and Twenty8Twelve.—Jon Marcus

Open Mondays through Thursdays 11 am to 6:30 pm, Fridays 11 am to 6 pm, Saturdays 10 am to 6 pm, Sundays noon to 5 pm.

Hudson
312 Shawmut Avenue
South End
Boston , Massachusetts
02118
Tel: 617 292 0900
www.hudsonboston.com

An unexpectedly successful blend of casual California style and New England sophistication, Hudson is a tiny home-decor shop that sells both vintage and contemporary pieces in a laid-back space; you'll often find the owner's golden retriever hanging out there. She—the owner, not the dog—designs the throw pillows you'll see stacked on the Verellen sofas; there's also the latest from California designers Oly, bedding by Rachel Ashwell's Shabby Chic, and smaller knickknacks that make great gifts.—Jon Marcus

Open Mondays through Saturdays 10 am to 6 pm (Thursdays till 7 pm), Sundays 11 am to 5 pm.

Lekker
1317 Washington Street
South End
Boston , Massachusetts
02118
Tel: 617 542 6464
www.lekkerhome.com

Beautiful, useful things abound at Lekker, a home-furnishings shop that's building a wide reputation. The expertly curated selection (furniture, gifts, glassware, bedding, and accent pieces) doesn't just follow trends, it anticipates them. Fancy a glass-and-stainless-steel water jug from Blomus or John Derian découpaged dishware but don't have space in your suitcase? No matter. Shipping is free.—Jon Marcus

Open Mondays through Fridays 10 am to 6 pm, Saturdays 11 am to 6 pm, Sundays noon to 5 pm.

Little Miss Drama
12 Old South Wharf
Nantucket , Massachusetts
02554
Tel: 508 228 1937
littlemissdrama.com

New York jewelry designers Pam Diem and Deborah Knox were actresses before becoming jewelry designers, and their bold, brassy line of jewelry evokes old Hollywood and Broadway's golden age. Each piece is handmade and named after the female character, musical, or movie that inspired it—the Daisy Buchanan, for example, a necklace made of two strands of pedal-shaped amazonite and clear quartz and separated by vermeil beads; the Holly Golightly, also a necklace, is made of three braided strands with alternating red, pink, and green briolettes. This, their new flagship store in the former Capricorn Gallery space on Old South Wharf, has been long anticipated by Nantucket shoppers.

Open late May through September.

Martha's Vineyard Glassworks
683 State Road
West Tisbury , Massachusetts
02575
Tel: 508 693 6026
mvglassworks.com

Watching glassblowers practicing their old-fashioned craft may take you back to elementary school field trips. But seeing the end result at Martha's Vineyard Glassworks will snap you out of it. The open studio anchors a gallery filled with vividly colored handblown glassware, from functional to sculptural, that's anything but old-fashioned.

Midnight Farm
18 Water-Cromwell Lane
Vineyard Haven , Massachusetts
02568
Tel: 508 693 1997
midnightfarm.net

Better known as Carly Simon's store (she's actually one of the partners; the owner is Tamara Weiss), Midnight Farm has all the multiculti charms of a more rarefied (and pricier) Anthropologie. The warehouse-like space is roughly divided into housewares and hippie-chick clothes. Look for shabby-chic couches in antique-looking prints, carved wooden salad bowls, lamps adorned with beading and seashells, Dosa silk jewel-toned dresses, Notify jeans, Frye boots, and hand-crocheted sweaters and mini-caftans for kids. There's also a selection of eco-friendly bath products, jewelry, art books, and world-music CDs—including, of course, Carly's latest.

Mitchell's Book Corner
54 Main Street
Nantucket , Massachusetts
02554
Tel: 508 228 1080
www.mitchellsbookcorner.com

Like many other independent bookstores, Mitchell's was at risk of falling victim to Internet competition compounded by soaring rents. That was until Wendy Schmidt, a summer resident and wife of Google CEO Eric Schmidt, bought the building and ensured the store's survival. After four decades, the business itself has been sold to two longtime employees. With 40,000 titles crammed into its small space, Mitchell's has everything from light beach reads to serious literature, but it's best known for the back room filled with books about Nantucket whaling and maritime lore—the most complete selection of its kind. Local authors sign their books on Saturday mornings, and popular readings are held in the nearby Atheneum.

Mix
6 Main Street
Vineyard Haven , Massachusetts
02568
Tel: 508 693 8240

Vintage kitsch and eclectic modern gifts share floor space at Emily Milstein's funky boutique. If you're not in the market for a 1930s Brownie camera, a calico kitchen apron from the '50s, or a stack of the Golden Books you once read as a child, you can check out newer-wave wares like candy-colored porcelain tableware from Mud Australia and Gecko Traders' eco-totes, made from recycled Cambodian rice sacks. There are also such retro finds as Einstein's Energy Bars and Glee Natural Gum, along with vintage women's and new children's clothes and housewares.

Open Thursdays through Sundays April through December.

Moxie
51 Charles Street
Boston , Massachusetts
02114
Tel: 617 557 9991
www.moxieboston.com

Moxie looks like no other shoe store you've ever seen. Its interior design evokes the inside of an airplane fuselage, with a long, purple-velvet bench down the center for trying on the kicks from Sigerson Morrison, Cynthia Vincent, Delman, Bernardo, Botkier, Claudia Ciuti, Cole Haan, Jack Rogers, Kooba, Lauren Merkin, Marc Jacobs, and others. Don't need shoes? The artsy, one-of-a-kind handbags are reason enough to drop in.—Jon Marcus

Open Mondays through Fridays 10 am to 7 pm, Saturdays 10 am to 6 pm, Sundays 11 am to 6 pm.

Murray's Toggery
62 Main Street
Nantucket , Massachusetts
02554
Tel: 508 228 0437
www.nantucketreds.com

When owner Philip Murray introduced brick-red sailcloth clothes for men in 1945, he started a fashion trend that's become iconic on and off the island. Today, they're known as Nantucket Reds, and Murray's not only still stocks them—trousers, shorts, skirts, the lot—it holds the trademark on the term. This is HQ for the old-school prep set, with deck shoes, polo shirts, cable sweaters in umpteen colors, and madras, madras everywhere. Murray's is an only-on-Nantucket sea of whale belts and seersucker, and a Main Street institution. Open year-round, it's also a place where locals go to "have a gam"— catch up on local gossip with the Murray descendants who still run the place.

Closed Sundays, January through April.

Nantucket Basket Works
11 First Way
Nantucket , Massachusetts
02554
Tel: 508 228 2518
www.alanswreed.com

Handwoven baskets have been made on Nantucket since the turn of the century. Sturdy but still delicate looking, the wooden-handled totes are known as "lightship baskets," because they were first woven in the mid-1800s by bored sailors stationed on floating lighthouses offshore. The local artisans at this studio about a mile south of Nantucket Town carry on the tradition, making expensive one-of-a-kind pieces, many decorated with scrimshaw and ivory inlays that are also crafted here.

Nantucket Looms
16 Federal Street
Nantucket , Massachusetts
02554
Tel: 508 228 1908
www.nantucketlooms.com

Established in 1968 as a weaving collective, Nantucket Looms still produces unique, handloomed blankets and throws in its second-floor studio. The shop on the first floor has an array of these for sale, all made from natural fibers like cashmere and linen. Other island artists also sell their wares here, including paintings, jewelry, furniture, wildflower soap, and sophisticated knickknacks, most with a nautical theme. Jackie Onassis made it a point to drop in every time she visited the island in the 1970s (the store would obligingly close while she shopped.) If you overhear locals grumbling about Nantucket Looms's move from its former prime spot on Main Street, it's because the shop was displaced by a certain fashion designer (initials R.L.) peddling high-end preppy styles.

Open Mondays through Saturdays.

Newbury Street
Newburystreetleague.org

The shopping street to end all shopping streets, Newbury's eight-block span (approximately one mile) is home to some 73 clothing boutiques, 40 art galleries, 30 day spas, and 30 restaurants. Some names are familiar, from Valentino and Cartier to H&M and American Eagle, though others are native to Beantown. Tess & Carlos (no. 141A; 617-262-8377; www.tessandcarlos.com), Dress (no. 221; 617-424-7125; www.dressboston.com), and Matsu (no. 259; 617-266-9707; www.matsuboston.com) all carry big-ticket items by high-profile designers; and Trident Booksellers & Cafe is a nice antidote to the big-box sellers (no. 338; 617-267-8688; www.tridentbookscafe.com).

Posh
18 Old South Wharf
Nantucket , Massachusetts
02554
Tel: 508 414 1330
jessicahicks.com

Worn by the likes of Halle Berry, Eva Longoria, Jessica Alba, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Paris Hilton, the playful jewelry made by Nantucketer Jessica Hicks is distinctive for the tiny holes she drills in metal shapes, from stars to hearts to teardrops. Hicks, who started by selling her work at Vis-a-Vis boutique on Main Street (where it's also still available), now has her own small shop on Old South Wharf so that not only insiders, but everybody else, can get some.

Open late May through September.

Shopping in Brewster

At the Sydenstricker Glass Gallery showroom, artists create vivid, kiln-fired glassware using an early Egyptian process rediscovered by an MIT researcher. The traditions at the nearby Brewster Store aren't as ancient, but it is a quintessential New England general store (complete with genuine old codgers on the porch) and sells everything from penny candy to staples for your rental cottage.

Sydenstricker Glass Gallery open daily 9 am to 5 pm.

Brewster Store open daily 6 am to 10 pm, mid-June through Labor Day; 6 am to 6 pm, Labor Day through mid-November; 6 am to 5 pm, mid-November through Christmas; 6:30 am to 5 pm, Christmas through April; 6 am to 6 pm, April through mid-June.

Shopping in Chatham

Chatham's Main Street exemplifies the archetypal Cape Cod village, with picturesque storefronts housing some fun, hip, and creative shops. Although the intimate Trading Company looks like it's been around forever (with dark barn-board paneling, pressed-tin lamp shades, antiques, and Oriental rugs), this family-owned enterprise opened in 1976 and sells up-to-date women's clothing and accessories. Expect elegant pieces from fashion houses like Armani and Agnona, and attentive service—likely from one of the owners. Appropriate to the seafaring tradition of Cape Cod, Kahn Fine Antiques specializes in nautical antiques from the 17th through 19th centuries. Filled with clocks, barometers, campaign chests, ship wheels and bells, candlestick holders, whaling harpoons, swords, pistols, Chinese porcelain, whale teeth, bone-handled knives with the Royal Navy insignia, portraits, paintings, engravings, ambrotypes, maps, and prints, it's as much a museum as an antique store, but everything is for sale. Notable for its large collection of backlist titles, Yellow Umbrella Books sells an enormous selection of new and used best sellers and rare or out-of-print books, plus jazz, folk, New Age, and classical CDs. Everything here was handpicked by the owner, a poet who previously worked in the publishing industry.

The Trading Company open Mondays through Saturdays 10 am to 5 pm, March through December; Tuesdays through Saturdays 10 am to 5 pm, January and February.

Kahn Fine Antiques open Mondays through Saturdays 10 am to 5 pm, Sundays noon to 5 pm, Memorial Day through Columbus Day; Mondays through Saturdays 11 am to 4 pm, Columbus Day through Memorial Day (call ahead in winter months).

Yellow Umbrella Books open daily 9 am to 10 pm, mid-June through Labor Day; Mondays through Saturdays 9 am to 5:30 pm, Sundays 10 am to 5:30 pm, Labor Day through mid-June.

Hotel Photo
Shopping in Dennis

Opened in 1952 by the prominent potter and sculptor Harry Holl, Scargo Stoneware Pottery sells work by Holl, his daughters, a son-in-law, and other artists who have apprenticed here. Best categorized as contemporary American folk art, the work displayed at this tranquil outdoor gallery, sculpture garden, and studio includes decorative ceramics, sculpture, tableware, pottery, wind chimes, prints, and jewelry, much of it in deep, rich colors. Just down the road is a jewelry studio-showroom, Ross Coppelman, Goldsmith. Inspired by Cape Cod's seascape, Coppelman crafts suns, waves, birds, and starfish out of gold, platinum, and silver.

Scargo Stoneware Pottery open daily 10 am to 6 pm, May through September; daily 10 am to 5 pm, October through April.

Ross Coppelman, Goldsmith, open Mondays through Saturdays 10 am to 5 pm, May through December; Tuesdays through Saturdays 10 am to 5 pm, January through April.

Shopping in Orleans

Don't be put off by the name Bird Watcher's General Store: Even if you have no interest in bird-watching, you may lose track of time exploring the endless selection of binoculars, telescopes, books, and avian paraphernalia. A big part of the experience is trying your luck at the customer joke-telling contest and making a stop in the famous bathroom, which is wallpapered in cartoons, photographs, and bumper stickers. More serious but no less interesting, Tree's Place is an art gallery housed in an early-19th-century sea captain's mansion. It specializes in American realism, Impressionism, and postmodernism, by both established and emerging artists.

Bird Watcher's General Store open daily 9 am to 9 pm, July and August; Mondays through Saturdays 9:15 am to 5:15 pm, Sundays 10:15 am to 5 pm, September through June.

Tree's Place open Mondays through Fridays 10 am to 5:30 pm, Saturdays 10 am to 7 pm, and Sundays noon to 5 pm, Memorial Day through Labor Day; Mondays through Saturdays 10 am to 5 pm, Labor Day through Memorial Day.

Shopping in Provincetown

Provincetown's Commercial Street is a crowded bazaar of art galleries, antique shops, souvenir stores, bars, ice-cream counters, and restaurants. Retro antique and reproduction collectibles overflow from Remembrances of Things Past, a tiny basement shop whose name takes its cue from Marcel Proust's epic exploration of memory. The specialty here is objects from the 20th century, particularly Bakelite; Art Deco items; jewelry; prints and posters; and celebrity, sports, film, advertising, and TV memorabilia. Down the street, contemporary paintings, prints, and photography by Chinese artists are the focus of the Zen-inspired Tao Water Art Gallery II. Near the wharf, you'll find BodyBody, a stylish men's store that stocks duds from high-end designers such as Versace, Ted Baker, and Christian Lacroix. It has P-town's largest swimwear selection and a unique assortment of neckties for your inevitable return to civilization. South of the Pilgrim Monument, Marine Specialties is more than an Army–Navy surplus store: It's a mother lode of anything and everything that comes under the heading of surplus, salvage, irregular, or closeout. This includes—but is not limited to—brand-new name-brand clothing, art supplies, concert posters, airline china, swords, flatware, wooden buoys, camping gear, and brass weather vanes. Nearby, Wa is a serene shop that sells scented products (incense, soaps, candles), decorative objects, and housewares from Japan, China, and Southeast Asia. Many visitors miss the tiny back garden filled with sculptures and wind chimes.

Remembrances of Things Past open daily 11 am to 5 pm, mid-May through mid-September.

Tao Water Art Gallery II open Thursdays through Mondays 11 am to 5 pm, June; Thursdays through Mondays 11 am to 10 pm, July through September; and Saturdays and Sundays 11 am to 4 pm, or by appointment, October through May.

Wa open daily 10 am to 11 pm, mid-June through October; daily 10 am to 7 pm, October through early December; Saturdays and Sundays 11 am to 5 pm, early December through March; daily 10 am to 7 pm, April through mid-June.

Marine Specialties open daily 10 am to 10 pm, mid-June through June 30; daily 10 am to 1 am, July through Labor Day; Sundays through Fridays 10 am to 10 pm, Saturdays 10 am to midnight, Labor Day through Columbus Day; daily 11 am to 5 pm, Columbus Day through December; Saturdays and Sundays 11 am to 5 pm, January through mid-March; Mondays through Saturdays 10 am to 5 pm, Sundays 11 am to 5 pm, mid-March through mid-May; Sundays through Fridays 10 am to 6 pm, Saturdays 10 am to 10 pm, mid-May through mid-June.

Shopping in Sandwich

There are several large antiques consignment shops on Cape Cod, but the best is the Sandwich Antiques Center. Rooms and rooms are filled with meticulously displayed merchandise, including furniture, military medals, and a wide selection of glass and porcelain. For a local souvenir, pick up some Sandwich glass (for much of the 19th century, this town was synonymous with American glass).

Open daily 10 am to 5 pm.

Shopping in Yarmouth

Built as an apothecary by Thacher Taylor Hallet in 1889 and run by his descendants, Hallet's Store still has its original marble-topped soda fountain—with swivel stools edged in chrome, naturally. You'll find the usual general store assortment of foodstuffs and household goods; a little-known museum on the second floor displays a somewhat random collection of artifacts, from World War II ration checks to Lucky Strike advertisements.

Open daily 10 am to 5 pm, late May through mid-October.

South End

What Newbury is to fashion, and Charles is to antiques, the South End is to home decor. This perennially up-and-coming neighborhood still has some rough edges, but they are being smoothed out more and more each day as the historic brick-lined blocks welcome high-end boutiques and restaurants—and residents to frequent them. The main action takes place on three streets that run parallel to each other: Tremont, Shawmut, and Washington. Stop at Lekker if you are in the mood for some Dutch porcelain (1317 Washington St.; 617-542-6464; www.lekkerhome.com; closed Mondays). Around the corner from Lekker, the diminutive Hudson sources its fine and vintage home accents a little closer to home—expect to see the latest from Oly and Shabby Chic by Rachel Ashwell in addition to throw pillows designed by the store's owner, Jill Goldberg (312 Shawmut Ave.; 617-292-0900; www.hudsonboston.com; closed Mondays). Fuel up at South End Formaggio, which stocks an immaculate selection of wines, cheeses, charcuterie, and gourmet sandwiches (268 Shawmut Ave.; 617-350-6996; www.southendformaggio.com) before heading to Turtle, Storey Hieronymus Hauck's outlet for showing off her favorite under-the-radar fashion designers from near—Boston's own Cheng Lin—and far—Elm of Iceland (619a Tremont St.; 617-266-2610; www.turtleboston.com; closed Mondays). If you happen to be in town on the first Friday of the month, head a little west of the beaten path to SOWA Artists Guild, where over 50 emerging artists open their cubby hole-sized studios to give the public an unobtrusive glimpse into their hearts and souls (450 Harrison Ave.; 978-337-4191; www.sowaartists.com).

SoWa Open Market
400 Harrison Avenue
South End
Boston , Massachusetts
02118
www.sowaopenmarket.com

Artists, famers, vendors, and designers—and the shoppers who love them—swarm to the SoWa Open Market Sundays from the spring to early fall. (There's a winter indoor market from mid-November until the end of April.) It's the city's best outdoor market, where you'll find handmade jewelry and crafts, original artwork, indie designer clothing, just-picked produce, fresh-baked breads and pies, a hip and fun crowd, and food trucks lined up to fuel your hunt for something special.—Jon Marcus

Sundays 10 am to 4 pm, May 1 through October 31. Winter market (485 Harrison Ave.) Sundays 10 am to 2 pm, mid-November through April 30.

Stel's
334 Newbury Street
Boston , Massachusetts
02115
Tel: 617 262 3348
www.shopstels.com

This subterranean store is surprisingly roomy and unintimidating, with the designer goods laid out on big wooden tables and roll-away racks. Compared to other Newbury Street stores with aisles so narrow it's impossible to pass, there's lots of space to browse the selection of women's fare from Ben Mori, Groceries, and Reece Hudson or men's clothes from Ape, Billy Kirk, and Unknown Soldier.—Jon Marcus

Open Mondays through Saturdays 11 am to 7 pm, Sundays noon to 6 pm.

Sundog
41 Main Street
Edgartown , Massachusetts
02539
Tel: 508 627 5254

Even men who hate to shop will like to shop at Sundog. The hypermasculine two-story store—still run by two generations of the family that founded it in 1970—sells only clothing made of natural fibers, from madras sweaters and rugby shirts to oil-skinned British hunting jackets and comfortable shoes. If that doesn't reel them in, there also are display cases filled with quirky curiosities like buck knives. This isn't some shopping-mall marketing genius's idea of a men's store. It's the real thing.

Trillium
17 Centre Street
Nantucket , Massachusetts
02554
Tel: 508 228 4450
trilliumnantucket.com

Eclectic and sea-themed housewares fill this tiny shop, including frosted wine goblets, decoupage plates made from antique illustrations of fish and sea creatures, glass candlesticks, and table centerpieces of deep-red coral. Among the must-haves are the vividly hued, handbeaded place mats in the shapes of lobsters and fish; they're the perfect accessory for lunch aboard your yacht.

Open Mondays through Saturdays.

Turtle
619a Tremont Street
South End
Boston , Massachusetts
02118
Tel: 617 266 2610
www.turtleboston.com

Turtle specializes in women's fashion designers from the U.S. and abroad who are just coming out of their shells—get it?—such as Elm of Iceland, Aimee G, or the home-grown Cheng Lin. The selection is extensive, and includes small gifts such as jewelry and soaps. While Turtle can be pricey, there are frequent sales with deep discounts, and you definitely won't look like you shopped at the mall.—Jon Marcus

Open Mondays through Fridays 11 am to 7 pm, Saturdays 10 am to 6 pm, Sundays noon to 5 pm.

Twentieth Century Limited
73 Charles Street
Boston , Massachusetts
02114
Tel: 617 742 1031
www.boston-vintagejewelry.com

Twentieth Century Limited's display cases are filled with vintage, estate, and costume jewelry, cultured pearls, sterling silver, antique cuff links, and even tiaras from the '40s and '50s, each of which suggests the story of a long-ago owner. But what we really like are the Bakelite, Art Deco, antique clocks, hats, and handbags. There are other antiques in this crowded space, too, including paintings, prints, and photographs, most of them unique potential gifts that are surprisingly affordable.—Jon Marcus

Mondays through Saturdays 11 am to 6 pm, Sundays noon to 5 pm.

Wish
49 Charles Street
Boston , Massachusetts
02114
Tel: 617 227 4441
www.wishboston.com

Trendy, tiny Wish sells high-end (read: expensive) women's clothing, from the classics (Diane von Furstenberg is a staple) to contemporary (Trina Turk, Alice + Olivia, Hudson, Ella Moss, Nanette Lapore, and Splendid). Although the space is a little claustrophobic, the salespeople usually won't hover or intrude. And while it's pricey, there are frequent deep sales, especially at seasons' ends.—Jon Marcus

Open Mondays 10 am to 6 pm, Tuesdays through Fridays 10 am to 7 pm, Saturdays 10 am to 6 pm, Sundays 11 am to 5 pm.

Information may have changed since the date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.