BEST PLACE TO GET OLD 2004 | Sage | Goods & Services | Phoenix
The place is packed with junk, but Sage is no junk store. Rather, we feel like we were in a cozy salon, with lighted candles and a gilt-framed sign reading, "Prices are firm but fair." Truth be told, the prices are a little high, but then, so is the quality. And really, when you're shopping for junk, who wants to pick through piles of, um, junk? Among the tastefully rusted metal pieces we saw some beautifully upholstered chairs, and nicely aged dressers. Even the bathroom at Sage is a showplace -- and showroom. It's worth the trip, even if you're only looking.

K-Momo gets props for getting Roc-A-Fella, Ecko and G Unit into the Valley's urban communities. Thanks to the Arizona chain's eight spread-out locations, you don't need to travel far to find the essential hair products too often skipped over by the Wal-Mart product buyers. And suburbanites also have easy neighborhood access to Fat Albert pullovers and Baby Phat thongs -- which may not necessarily be a good thing.
We like Haus so much, we contemplated gutting our entire shabby chic decorating theme just for one Jonathan Adler vase. This modern mecca features furniture the buyers at Copenhagen can only dream about, and a line of fabulous products for the dog-obsessed. We are also particularly fond of the paper goods.

So make a Haus call!

The Historic District Antique Market's 14,000 square feet are overrun with a colossal combination of high-quality antique furniture and irresistible vintage tchotchkes -- many of which have found their way into our home. Like the pair of massive plaster gold-leaf Grecian urn lamps we snagged for less than 20 bucks, and the French deco armoire we thought we couldn't afford -- until we saw the price tag. (When we snooped around a week later, we found the matching bedstead. Voilˆ! It's ours.) The enormously friendly staffers will not only remember your name, they'll probably remember that you collect mid-century modern office chairs and cut-glass starburst cocktail shakers, and they'll be happy to tell you which of their 78 vendors carries what you're looking for. Hurry! Something cool is waiting for you at this treasure trove of old stuff you can't live without.

You might not expect to find a "Fuck you you fucking fuck" wife beater tank top in the heart of Mesa, but for 16 years this mom-and-pop shop has defied the town's lack of diversity by selling everything from Cannibal Corpse shirts to The Passion of the Christ posters in the 3,600-square-foot corner of a strip mall, which the owners like to call their own little Switzerland. With more than a thousand different shirts in stock, Shirts 'n' Things prides itself on not being another generic mall shop with sanitized versions of edginess. Instead, it works hard to go beyond the Hot Topic inventory, and hopes to bring back a little of the '70s, when concert tees were wardrobe staples -- if they ever were, in Mesa.

You have to ask to be let into this grand gallery of artsy artifacts, but once you're inside, it's easy to see why. Less an antique shop than a museum of old-timey lighting design, Stuff Antiques provides a wonderfully illuminating trip into the history of vintage lighting. The place is mad with pole lamps and chandeliers, desk lamps and bedside lights and hurricane lanterns, all of them lovingly restored and rewired for use with newfangled electricity. A massive crystal chandelier, circa 1800, dangles elegantly near a pair of Deco-era ceramic boudoir lamps, which are crowding a funky '50s gooseneck with a recently restored parchment shade. If some of Stuff's stuff is pricey, it's because most of it is rare, none of it is repro, and all of it can be retrofitted to light up your home with the help of Stuff's friendly staff.

So what if your basement is bulging with all the stuff you already own and don't have room for? There's more to be had -- and at bargain prices -- at this collectibles mainstay on Indian School Road. Michael Todd's keeps expanding -- the store has taken over several small businesses on either side of it this past year -- to accommodate the roomfuls of gorgeous coffee tables and shiny waterfall desks and terrifically tacky paint-by-numbers sets offered for sale. Someone we know bought a stunning sofa for less than a hundred bucks; another pal found the tabletop jukebox he'd been searching for his whole life. We know we should probably sock away all the money we save by shopping at Michael Todd's, but we don't. We spend it -- on cool old lamps and tin mirrors and magnificent nightstands -- at Michael Todd's.

In north Scottsdale, one woman's trash is another woman's fabulous new famous-label wardrobe. Inside High Society Resale's "3,100 square feet of bargain hunting paradise," shopping becomes a full-contact endeavor: We throw elbows for Escada and body-check for Chanel.

Packed with everything from "blue jeans to ball gowns" -- plus Southwestern home decor items -- HSR scores new used merchandise on a daily basis -- high-end clothing, jewelry, designer handbags and shoes -- and accepts no item more than two years old. This ain't your grandma's thrift shop. High Society lures shoppers with racks of vintage apparel, lighted jewelry cases, and a coat room "brimming with the best furs in the world."

The only true fashion victims? Those who pay retail.

We almost tossed our cookies when we walked into ABC for the first time -- we got that excited. This headquarters for baking, cake decorating and party supplies is all that it promises, and more. We found the pink bakery boxes we'd been looking all over town for, the super-sturdy, every-shape-imaginable cookie cutters we'd been coveting, and armloads of party goods we never knew we needed but suddenly couldn't live without. We now have enough hot pink paper plates and napkins to last us through 2008, and a cabinet stuffed with icing implements we'll never figure out how to use. We couldn't be happier. Life is sweet.

Whether you're a novice with the needles or a veritable machine, Arizona Knitting and Needlepoint has what you need to knit. This charming, tiny yellow house is literally packed to the rafters with a selection of unusual, high-quality yarn, and the prices are fair. The staffers aren't snooty, and they maintain a helpful attitude even when confronted by rank amateurs. If they don't have a particular size and style of needle, they'll cheerfully order it, and they're happy to offer aesthetic advice on your project. (Here, unlike at some other knitting places in the Valley, you might actually feel inclined to take it.) Call first, because the shop closes for a few weeks in the summer.

See, we knew these folks were smart.

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