We recently enjoyed a spectacular Shop Small Saturday event in Fort Bragg and Mendocino, and it’s not too late to visit and share the love all during the month of December. Fort Bragg has become the perfect place to find a unique gift for anyone on your holiday list, and you can be sure you’ll get that extra love you can only find in a small town like ours. Why let shopping be drudgery when it can be a relaxing and joyful experience? Our streets are easy to navigate, and our festively decorated shops are full of inspiration. You’ll probably be surprised to discover just how much fun shopping is here. Some of the best shopping happens along Main, Laurel, Franklin, and Redwood Street in the heart of downtown.
Shop on Laurel
ER Energy stocks all sorts of kitchen gear, beautiful stoves, a wide assortment of kitchen knives, and always displays a beautiful Christmas tree loaded with spectacular ornaments. The Quarry’s gift ideas include sterling silver jewelry, crystals, gems, minerals,and ocean themed gifts. The Bookstore and Vinyl cafe is a throwback to a better time, when you could easily spend hours browsing in a carefully curated used book store. You can still do that in Fort Bragg! Laurel is our own little fashion corridor, where Fractalize and Barge North Company offer sturdy yet fashionable eco-friendly and American made clothing. Barge North offers some interesting craft classes too, so be sure to check out their Facebook page for the latest. On the corner of Franklin and Main, Splendiferous is a great place to find stylish women’s wear with an elegant flair.
GG’s has authentic Guatemalan clothing, gems, jewelry, accessories, and home decor, and of course Pippi’s Longstockings is THE place for all the latest sock styles, as well as hats, gloves, cute kids gifts, and more. For fashionable kicks, Heavenly Soles is where you’ll find the latest shoe styles. Dot and Twine across the street features DIY and charming handmade local gifts, clothing and cards. Europa and La Tre round out the fashionista clothing options on Laurel. The Frame Shop has long been a favorite gift stop in Fort Bragg, where you can also get your favorite photo or art piece framed for a meaningful holiday gift.
Be sure to stop by Headland’s Coffeehouse when you need a pick-me-up, snack or quick lunch, and right next door, Cucina Verona is a comfortable and relaxing spot to enjoy breakfast, lunch, or a wonderful, relaxed meal at the end of a long day of shopping.
Franklin Street Highlights
Turn right at Laurel and Franklin and you’ll find more cool shops like Reynolds Menswear and sister store Wren’s Boutique, as well as If the Shoe Fits, with a huge selection of used and new clothing, jewelry, and accessories. Astoria is a unique boutique with all sorts of gift ideas for adults and kiddies alike, and of course Spunky Skunk is a world class toy store we’re so lucky to have here – you could definitely get lost in there for hours! Further on down the street is The Lost Surf Shack, with all sorts of sporting gear, sunglasses, clothing, and gifts for boarders and outdoor enthusiasts. Down on the southwest corner is Well House West with gifts, clothing, kitchen stuff and more. If you’re on a budget, Cloth is a used clothing store with good prices for all ages. Partner’s Gallery has lovely gifts created by renowned artists, and Mendocino Coast Photography Gallery is an amazing space filled with photography of the Mendocino coast and nearby inland areas. Visit Mendocino has a really cool Holiday pop up store this month featuring works from a variety of Mendocino county artisans, so be sure to stop by and check them out.
Main Street, Fort Bragg
You’ll find lots of interesting stuff on Main Street, too. Next to Splendiferous is Understuff, where a vast selection of lingerie, sleepwear, and swimwear attracts visitors and locals alike. Understuff can properly size you and help you pick out a comfortable and fashionable bra. As one customer commented, “Basically, they will make you feel like a magical princess.” There’s a cool bath shop in the back of the store, too. Right across the street is the Depot, the gateway to the Skunk Train, with popular restaurant Laurel Deli and many interesting shops to peruse, including Pacific Star Winery tasting room, and one of the finest pastry shops anywhere, A Sweet Affair. The North Coast Brewing Company has a gift shop with plenty of swag on Main Street (stop by the pub, too, for great beer, food, and stellar jazz on weekends). Don’t miss The Front porch at the Atrium a few blocks north – you may have experienced Laura’s incredible eye for stylish antiques, vintage, home goods, and gifts at her former shops, The Posh Pauper and The Stables.
In the center of town, art galleries beckon with amazing gift ideas. Edgewater and Northcoast Artists Gallery are two that feature beautiful prints, paintings, photographs, wood, sculpture, pottery, textiles, jewelry and glass creations from our local artists. The Blaqk Door is a well-stocked and friendly place to stop for gamers, comic book lovers, and kids at heart. Racines is an amazing art supply store with a great card selection. Tangents offers tons of gift options for the trendy set, and Feet First is the place to shop for shoes for the whole family. There’s another interesting bookstore on Main street, too. Windsong has assembled a thoughtful selection of really good books. Don’t miss Triangle Tattoo and Museum, an iconic Fort Bragg landmark while you’re in the neighborhood. Heading south, you’ll find The Company Store, housing Fort Bragg Cyclery, Zappa’s Coffee Shop and The Mendocino Cookie Company, serving organic coffee and homemade treats. They ship cookies, too! Across the street is The Outdoor Store with clothing and gear for camping, hiking, and outdoor adventuring.
Redwood is enjoying a renaissance with new shops joining long time favorites like Family Hands, with a tasteful selection of home furnishings, kitchen items, rugs, jewelry, and beautiful gift items, and FloBeds, with sustainable bedding options to ensure a restful sleep. Interior has an amazing array of gifts and decorative items, as well as special treats for your pets. The General is a brand new place that has a very interesting and unusual selection of gifts, housewares, cards, hats, belts, and comestibles. Art Explorers is an artistically stimulating environment for artists with disabilities. It’s an honor to have these artists as part of our community in Fort Bragg. Wonderful paintings, prints, cards, mosaics, and small sculptures are available for sale.
We hope you’ll find a world of treasures here in Fort Bragg this December.