Bunky Boutique

This year's most stylish Phoenix wedding took place not here but in lower Manhattan, just off the West Side Highway in an industrial building that houses artists and low-income residents. The groom, Jim Malloy, is a native Phoenician; his new bride, Rachel Richards, hails from the wilds of Montana but now calls downtown Phoenix home.

Two years ago, Richards opened Bunky Boutique, a hip but welcoming hole-in-the-wall that customers entered from an alley just south of Roosevelt Row, between Fifth and Sixth streets, and the store became another popular stop on the downtown beat, along with places like MADE and eye lounge and Tammie Coe. Richards and Malloy, a driver for UPS by day, were as much a draw as their atypical, indie clothing and accessories: She's friendly and petite, with porcelain skin, cornflower blue eyes and improbably red hair, and he's lanky, outgoing and nerdily hip (or the other way around — we're never quite sure). Together, they're the Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers of Phoenix style, making it look easy as they nurtured Bunky and then transitioned from back alley to the first floor of a gracious brick-and-wood house next to The Roosevelt Tavern.

And then there was their wedding this spring: Richards simply gorgeous in a strapless white gown, Malloy unexpectedly elegant in a classic tux, and the city of New York as their magical backdrop. Their wedding photos look like stills from the feel-good movie of the year, and we've got our fingers crossed that these two characters will live happily ever after, in love, in style, and in Phoenix.

Best of Phoenix 2009 In Photos

Garage

Katie Wilson rocks the kidswear hard in her sparkly boutique — complete with a candy bar that would make Dylan Lauren green with envy. You can embrace your kid's inner Elvis or Harley rider with a black leather coat and all the trimmings, go girly with the fullest tutus in town, or just monkey around with Paul Frank's latest. No matter the look, you can trust Wilson to have the best taste in town — and we're not just talking about her Pop Rocks. We'd let her shop for little Annabelle any day.

Best of Phoenix 2009 In Photos

Last Chance Bargain Shoes & Apparel

As shoppers here love to remind the rest of the world, "You only get one Last Chance — and it's in Phoenix."

Yes, there's Nordstrom Rack, the discount arm of the pricey chain department store. That's not what we're talking about here. Last Chance gets the stuff that doesn't sell at The Rack, as well as items from other Nordstroms far and wide, thanks to the company's liberal return policy. And if you dig — and dig you must; that Hobo wallet and those Prada loafers aren't going to jump up and grab you — you can find the deals of a lifetime. Last time we were there, we scored a pair of children's Lelli Kelly sequined tennis shoes for $12. Retail: almost $70. We know because the price tag was still on the bottom of the shoe.

Be sure to show up at 10 a.m., when the store opens — get there a few minutes early to hear the longtime manager give her speech about how you're not supposed to push, shove, or resell items. (It's pretty obvious, if you hang around Last Chance long enough, that all three go on regularly.) As the gates go up, grab a basket and adjust your body armor. These shoppers really do take their bargains seriously.

Best of Phoenix 2009 In Photos

Best Of Phoenix®

Best Of