Goodwill
People who hoard — whether it be inexpensive designer duds or cool old books and records — flock to this not-for-profit treasure trove way out on the west side. On our last trip, we found a first-edition John Irving novel, a pair of still-sealed Dean Martin record albums, and an honest-to-gosh Ralph Lauren dinner jacket, and paid less than 30 bucks for the whole bundle. The friendly, more-than-helpful staff here are always willing to help shoppers find what they're looking for and have even been overheard hinting at when all the best sales happen and the new stock goes out. No wonder people all over the land live surrounded by giant piles of their belongings, so many of them procured from Peoria's clean, well-stocked Goodwill store.
Sun Health Resale Shop
We shouldn't admit this, but we've lately become obsessed with vintage glassware. Pressed-glass punch bowls; gold-rimmed Jeannette Glass fruit bowls; Depression glass, and anything Anchor Hocking — we can't get enough. And we're blaming Sun Health Resale Shop for fueling our addiction, because we find more old hostess sets and 1950s foil-trimmed Chas Hall tumblers here than in most other thrift stores around — and believe us, we've been to them all! Our last haul included a Libbey Glass cocktail set from 1946 (still in the box), and a shoebox full of crystal highball glasses etched with our initial on them — what are the chances? They're greater at this great place for turning up glassware treasures.
Eclectic Monkey Emporium
Located on Main Street in Mesa, this thrift store not only offers funky cool finds, it does good for the local community. The store was never meant for the public. It was created as a place for victims of domestic violence and sexual assault to shop, free of charge. But with so many donations and knocks on the door from residents wanting to shop, Eclectic Monkey swung open its doors to all. Be sure to head all the way to the back to visit the man cave, filled with bike and car parts and hip menswear. The ladies have their own space, too, filled with vintage dresses, round couches, and a chandelier.
Why? Because old people have cool stuff, dude. Do your research on www.craigslist.com and www.yardsalesearch.com and make your way out to Sun City and Sun City West for the treasure hunt of a lifetime. The Sun Cities are home to retirees from across the nation, and when they're ready to part with their wares, the finds can range from World War II memorabilia to handcrafted furniture to other collectibles. Not to be crass, but keep an eye out for estate sales — that usually means there's an open house and everything is up for grabs.
Hissyfits
This place for pint-size shopping is packed but organized —by boys and girls and, then, by size. There is also room, somehow, for toys and gear. The store décor is cute and makes the shopping experience fun. The prices are a steal and, yes, the place is jam-packed. But if you are a picker and like to dig for a deal, this is your place.
Dillard's Clearance Center
It took a while, but we finally grew tired of the frantic, often bitter crowds and the harried help at Last Chance, and have renewed our former fondness for Dillard's Clearance Center, which is now located at Metrocenter on the east side. Neatly arranged racks of clothing, some of it very current and season-appropriate, are the order of the day here. Weekly unadvertised sales that knock up to 75 percent off of the already reduced prices make us feel like members of a special club, and we dig the impressive shoe department, arranged by size and style (rather than just tossed onto racks in piles, like at other clearance stores). Deeper discounts can be had from special racks of dresses and skirts priced as low as $4.99, and the menswear department always has a huge selection of name-brand and designer suits starting at ridiculously low prices. We're going back!

Best Teen Girls Clothing Store Where Grown-Up Gals Can Shop

Urban Angels

Urban Angels
If you want a trendy piece but don't want to have to venture into an indoor mall, visit the teen-style store Urban Angels at Tempe Marketplace. It carries a little bit of everything, including T-shirts, dresses, jammies, and accessories of all kinds. Find a small piece to add a trend to your wardrobe or go all out with a show-stopping dress. Why leave all the good stuff for kids?
Tempe Marketplace
Once your eyeballs adjust, you'll realize this bounteous cavern contains more than just wall-to-wall, floor-to-ceiling rhinestone and crystal bibs, in every color that's ever graced a quinceañera or prom. Faux pearls, from believable to cocktail-onion size, share space with handbags drenched in satin roses, statement necklaces, and every kind of hat embellished with every kind of stud. Among the pathologically sparkly bangles, belts, cuffs, tiaras, navel jewelry, and hair ornaments, you'll even find a few baubles targeting goths and hipsters. Prices are clearly displayed, but "Ask assistance for details," as the sign obliquely suggests, to discover secret sale items. Arrrrr!
Lesco

This is the place to go for straightforward, sort of old-school glasses on the cheap. How does $29 sound? They don't do your vision test, so you'll have to head to your optometrist for that, but bring in your prescription and they'll hook you up with a non-fussy pair of spectacles for a song. We've even seen a funky (in a good way) pair or two come out of Lesco.

C & G Jewelers
We got roped into helping a total stranger pick out an engagement ring for his wife-to-be — not the sort of thing we would normally find ourselves doing, but that's the kind of thing that happens at family-owned and -operated C & G Jewelers. The warm, pleasant atmosphere just sort of fosters this kind of down-home friendliness from staff and customers alike. Not that people go to C & G looking for a nice place to meet others. Smart shoppers and fans of gold and diamonds head there in search of treasures — and always find them, naturally. New and vintage watches, one-of-a-kind cocktail rings and earrings, and tennis bracelets galore — that's what discerning jewelry shoppers want, and always get, from C & G. The friendly atmosphere is just a shiny bonus.

Best Of Phoenix®

Best Of