Shopping the Streets of Portland
Photo courtesy Travel Portland
You’re more of limited edition, one-of-kind, or “I discovered this designer,” kind of shopper. You love finding that special something tucked away in a tiny boutique or thrift shop. You relish the idea of putting things together in new and unexpected ways. Your discerning sense of style and passion for fashion exploration make the Portland street shopping scene the perfect place for you to get your shop on!
Portland’s compact, easy access downtown is user-friendly (alpha and number organized streets anyone?) and oh-so-walkable. It also features everything from upscale retail to niche boutiques, theater, dining, movies, art, music, and so much more.
1010 SW Morrison Street
Portland, OR 97205
Located conveniently on the MAX light rail line just steps from the Galleria/SW 10th Ave Station, in the heart of Portland’s bustling downtown, the mantra is chic but affordable at this locally-owned clothing store. SaySay Boutique specializes in local and independent designers and Made in the USA goods, carrying everything an in-the-know Stumptown fashionista must-have, from vintage-look dresses and skirts, to bold print tops and outwear, to handmade and recycled jewelry, hats, socks, leggings, purses and bags.
Uptown/Nob Hill/NW 23rd
This Craftsman and Victorian-lined, narrow street of NW 23rd in the Uptown/Nob Hill neighborhood, is an easy-stroll shopping district chock-full of locally-owned trendy boutiques, artsy finds, and top area restaurants like Papa Hayden and Mio Sushi.
738 NW 23rd Avenue
Portland, OR 97210
728 NW 23rd Avenue
Now, with three locations in Portland (NW 23rd, Hawthorne, and Mississippi) this locally owned and operated women's boutique carries nationally recognized brands, as well as several smaller labels and strives to offer a variety of styles to reach women of any age. The staff here can not only help you put together a great look, but they can show you a variety of ways in which to wear the same piece to keep it fresh. The original flagship store, recently expanded to include a stand-alone sister store, PlaTform, a shoe and accessory boutique.
The Pearl District
The former-industrial-now-tony Pearl District caters to Portland’s most discerning tastes and is home to some of its premiere art galleries, home design showrooms, the famous Powell’s Books, The Gerding Theater at the Armory, and stylish live-jazz venue, Jimmy Mak’s.
Mabel & Zora
748 NW 11th Avenue
Portland, OR 97209
This Bridgetown favorite (voted Best Boutique by the Oregonian) is conveniently located right on the Portland streetcar line and features top designer brands, as well as locally designed items. Storeowner, Tiffany Bean, has even designed an eponymous line available exclusively at Mabel & Zora. This carefully curated collection includes a smart array of timeless cocktail dresses and a simple but elegant jewelry pieces to help you create a stunning look with minimal effort.
Situated on SE Belmont Street in the Sunnyside neighborhood, and bordered by both the Laurelhurst and Mount Tabor neighborhoods, this hipster haven is a mecca for beardos and yoga moms alike.
3300 SE Belmont
Portland OR 97214
Noun is not a clothing boutique but rather an everything-you-never-knew-you-needed type boutique — or as the store’s tagline cleverly states, “a person's place for things.” This southeast shop is a treasure hunter’s treasure with serious finds for the aesthetically minded to be found in every nook. Self-described as “equal parts curiosity shop, art gallery and modern decor boutique,” Noun shares space with the tasty St. Cupcake and sells vintage home and decorator items, locally made jewelry, fetching stationary (yes, a handwritten letter never goes out of style!) and smattering of whatever else strikes their fancy including things like typewriters, art, glassware, clocks, books, pillows, ceramics, mirrors, journals, rugs, postcards, and so much more. You’ll want to see it to believe it.
The bohemian Hawthorne District is one of the most popular districts in Portland, marrying a heady mix of hippie, hipster, and tourist-friendly merch. Check out the wide-ranging blend of shops from McMenamins Bagdad Theater & Pub to vintage gems like House of Vintage and Red Light, to music, gift and stationary stores, and P-town favorite eateries like 3 Doors Down and Blue Star Donuts.
3418 SE Hawthorne Boulevard
Portland, OR 97214
An ultra feminine stroll through an Edith Wharton novel, Mink is gilded but never stuffy. The surroundings are opulent but the clothes here are casual, made with soft, comfortable fabrics — modern but utterly sensual. Patterned after the old-fashioned dress shop of yore, Mink’s hands-on service approach is a real treat and will leave you feeling pampered. That’s because the clothes here are lovingly styled for movement, comfort and flattery by the staff (trained by owner Carla Mink, to have an eye for the customer’s best fit). Regularly fitting women from size zero to 16 means that Mink’s staff knows the most flattering cut for any body type. And the jewelry! Predominately made by Portland artists, Mink’s jewelry is reminiscently romantic, like an heirloom piece handed down through the generations.
Alberta Arts District/NE Alberta
Wedged in end-to-end on NE Alberta Street, you’ll find a myriad of boutiques, galleries, and indie shops jam-packed with a diverse selection of uncommon goodies, side-by-side with some of the tastiest fare Portland has to offer from the likes of Salt & Straw (known for their out-of-the-ordinary hard-pack ice cream), the savory curry laced flavor of Bollywood Theater, and the country gravy dripped chicken and biscuit sandwiches of Pine Street Biscuits.
1439 NE Alberta Street
Portland, OR 97211
Some of your most eclectic shopping finds of the bunch will be found in Portland’s walkable Alberta Arts District. Frock is no exception and offers an affordable, whimsical mix of vintage and local designers. Score kooky, rare, and even one-of-a-kind finds at this man, woman, and child-friendly boutique. Frock out in a bold peacock print dress, paired with a unicorn or dinosaur heeled pump. Or sock out, if you prefer, gazing at their epic wall of Portland’s own killer Sock-it-to-Me knee socks. But whatever you do, don’t miss this unique shopping experience.