Best of Kansas City: Local Boutique Stores
Many months ago I posted a survey asking people what their favorite local Kansas City establishments were in a variety of categories. Well, people delivered! I got a lot of great responses with some places I’ve never even heard of. In order to make it a bit easier to organize, I decided to release the results in a series of categorized blog posts. Today, I’m starting with some of the local, boutique-type stores that people said are a must visit in Kansas City. In no particular order, here we go!
1. Hammerpress Design
This is a store that I had heard of but never actually visited myself. After browsing their website, I’m definitely going to have to go! They have a variety of letterpress items (which I love), including cards, calendars, stationary, etc. They even do custom printing. I love sending notes through the mail, so I want to go check out their note cards in person.
2. 5B & Co. Candles
5B&Co. is one of my favorite candle places in KC. I used to love going every time we go to Weston. Now they are in Brookside. The votives are a perfect little size (I love using them in my office) and the scents are awesome. My go-to scents are the Burnt Sugar, Eucalyptus Mint, Fresh Cut Grass, and Peony. The seasonal scents are worth a special trip in. I love all their fall and Christmas scents!
3. Indigo Wild Factory
Indigo Wild is the home of Zum soaps (and other fun products). While you can find Zum soaps at Hy Vee and other local places, I love to go straight to the source- the factory! They have a huge selection and they have all their other products in stock as well (laundry detergents, face products, animal shampoo, etc.). They also have a bin full of “misfit” soaps on discount and usually have some sort of sale going on on seasonal items. As a warning, some peoples’ nose can’t handle the factory. It smells extremely strong! Every time we go, Patrick waits for me in the car because it makes his nose run like crazy.
4. Pryde’s Kitchen Westport
Pryde’s bills themselves as the “hardware store for cooks” and I think that’s pretty accurate. They have aisles upon aisles of fun kitchen stuff. If you love Fiestaware like me, it’s like a Fiestaware mecca full of whatever you might need.
5. Trapp Candles
If you’re looking for the highest quality scented candles in KC, I think that award goes to Trapp. Trapp candles are a little more pricey than other candle stores but are totally worth it. Even their votives can fill a whole room with really rich scents. They have some really awesome unique scents as well, so I’d recommend just making a special visit to their store!
6. Three Dog Bakery
Three Dog Bakery is like a wonderland for crazy dog people (such as myself). I love visiting Three Dog to pick out new treats for Truman. Their treats are gourment (think Bichon Biscotti) and are all natural and safe for human consumption as well. I even tasted a bit of Truman’s cake one year and it really was not bad. Speaking of cakes, you can get custom ordered dog birthday cakes, which of course I have to do for Truman every year. This year he requested carrot cake with peanut butter frosting.
7. The West Bottoms
The West Bottoms is a treasure trove of vintage, antique, and basically anything else home-decor related that you could imagine. There are many stores down there housed in the giant old warehouses and each one is a bit different. I recommend not going on a First Friday weekend, because it’s just so crazy. Most of the stores are open during the other weekends of the month, so you can get all the shopping done with none of the crowds. They do have strange hours so make sure you check their website, Facebook or just call to make sure they’re open.
Some of my favorites are: Restoration Emporium, Good Ju Ju, Pink Daisy, Nook and Cranny, and Bella Patina.
Several of the stores also offer fun classes, like crafts, seasonal decor, wreaths, furniture refinishing, etc. Check their facebook pages for more information about that.
8. Charlie Hustle
I think everyone has probably seen these shirts by now, and they’re made by a cool local company. One of my survey respondents nominated Charlie Hustle and I definitely agree with them that its a great place to check out. Their shirts are fun, with a KC twist, and they’re super comfortable. Keep an eye out for their warehouse sale (I think it’s once a year) but we went in 2016 and all shirts were like $5! They even had hats for sale. Even Truman ended up with his own stash of Charlie Hustle. At that price, who can resist?
9. Vom Fass
I fell in love with Vom Fass when we lived in St. Louis, and I was so excited to see one finally come to Kansas City! It’s located on the Plaza. They have all these different oils and vinegars, as well as a big selection of liqueurs and wines. My favorites are the apple pie liqueurs, nut chocolate liqueur (really good in coffee), and the sour cherry liqueur.
You can sample pretty much anything, which I love.
10. Savory Spice Shop
Savory Spice Shop is in Brookside, and I just recently discovered it. A friend and I took a Valentines truffle class and it was so fun! They have a lot of interesting classes throughout the year, and they’re very reasonable. Our truffle class was only $10, and we made and took home a bunch of fun chocolate truffles.
Their store is full of really interesting spices and seasonings. I had a really hard time deciding what to get! I ended up buying a greek seasoning, a citrus herb seasoning, and a really awesome hickory smoked black sea salt. It is amazing, I just used it on homemade pizzas last week.
It’s a great place to browse around and find fun new spices, and a great place to find unique gifts!
11. Made in Kansas City
The Made in Kansas City store is another reader suggestion. They have physical locations and also a great online store. They curate all sorts of fun things that are made by local KC merchants in one place. They have a huge variety and I found all sorts of fun things when I was looking around on their site.
12. Better Cheddar
Better Cheddar is one of my favorite places to visit on the Plaza. It’s a cheese/jelly/preserves/soda store where you can taste test all sorts of cheeses and dips. I love coming here to get gjetost (our fav kind of cheese) and trying new cheeses. You can get however much you want, whether you’re looking for party size or just a snack size to eat with wine.
13. Andre’s Confiserie Suisse
If you want the best chocolate/sweets in Kansas City, you go to Andres. Seriously, everything at Andres is amazing. I love going there for Easter for their marzipan animals, or anytime for some hot chocolate and truffles. They have an amazing restaurant too so you can really take your time and relax.
14. Johnson Farms Plants and Pumpkins
If you like pumpkins, produce, or plants, you will love Johnson Farms. They have an amazing pumpkin patch (and fun activities for kids) in the fall, a huge garden with pick your own produce (beets, cabbage, tomatoes, eggplants, you name it), and their mums sale in the fall is amazing. Their mums are HUGE and they have more varieties to choose from than you’ve ever seen before. The best part is they’re way cheaper than buying your mums at a place like Home Depot (and way better quality). Johnson Farms has been a fun outing every time I’ve been, and it’s definitely worth the drive.
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