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13 Uniquely Boulder Shops

Here’s a baker’s dozen of independent shops you can only find in Boulder.

The Peppercorn on Boulder's Pearl Street
The Peppercorn on Boulder's Pearl Street

Boulder Arts & Crafts Gallery

Pick up a watercolor of Boulder’s Chautauqua Meadow, a locally made fabric handbag or a beautifully inlaid wooden cutting board. The Boulder Arts & Crafts Gallery showcases paintings, photography, jewelry, ceramics, woodwork and fiber arts by local and national artists. It’s the perfect place for tasteful mementos of your Boulder visit.

Boulder Book Store

Towering wooden bookshelves, creaky wood floors, a great “staff picks” shelf, local bestsellers and a tremendous selection spanning three floors makes this homegrown bookstore a favorite stop on Pearl Street. Simply get lost among the Boulder Book Store shelves or sit in on an author reading.

Common Threads

There are secondhand stores and then there is Common Threads — filled to capacity with cut-rate deals on pre-owned designer clothing and shoes. Shop alongside Boulder’s most stylish set, and enjoy the thrill of the hunt for that prized Isabelle Marant blouse or a pair of Frye boots with your name all over them.   

McGuckin Hardware

A Boulder original that holds a special place in the hearts of locals, McGuckin Hardware is worth a stop just to marvel at the variety of merchandise — from yo-yos and pet beds to wrenches and ball caps. You’ll find something here you can’t live without, guaranteed — and helpful staff members are around every aisle.


This Pearl Street shop has both impeccable taste and fair-trade ethics. Every item sold in Momentum is handmade and helps provide employment opportunities for artisan groups around the world. Find super-soft woven towels, table linens, pottery, jewelry, baby gifts and clothing to make you feel good inside and out.

University Bikes

Enter, and draw your eyes over a sea of bicycles. Then let the super-friendly staff point you to what you’re looking for. U Bikes is a Boulder biking institution, with sales, rentals, master bike-fitting services and a 24-hour bike-part vending machine out front.

The Peppercorn

You’ve probably spotted The Peppercorn’s blue-and-white-striped shopping bags all day along Pearl Street. Clever culinary tools, stacks upon stacks of cookbooks, locally produced foods and gorgeous pottery are packed into every nook and cranny of this delightful shop. Just try to escape without a blue-and-white-striped bag of your own.

Cedar & Hyde Mercantille

So chic, yet so woodsy. The spare, modernist designs of the goods sold in Cedar & Hyde are softened by the fact they’re often made of natural materials — corked clay canisters, the softest denim and organic cotton clothing, even a leather-and-wood fly swatter that could double as a piece of art.  

Neptune Mountaineering

A longtime hub for Boulder’s hardcore adventurers, Neptune Mountaineering is all about friendly advice and precisely right gear for rock climbing, camping and skiing. There’s even a small museum inside, showcasing climbing and skiing equipment and photographs from the mid-1800s to the late 1900s.

Farfel’s Farm

Your furry friend will be pretty upset with you if you don’t bring him or her back something spiffy from Boulder. Farfel’s Farm has a staggering selection of colorful collars, gourmet pet treats and toys that aim to please your pooch.

Art Source International

Vintage Boulder-themed posters, black-and-white photographs, posters, old maps, globes and puzzles line the walls of Art Source International — a Pearl Street landmark.

Nod & Rose Storehouse

The go-to spot for men’s jeans, casual but great-looking shirts and excellent service, Nod & Rose Storehouse has a unique Texas-meets-Pacific Northwest vibe that is decidedly trendy but somehow unpretentious. Ladies will love the selection of down-to-earth, quality duds, too.

Island Farm

Island Farm’s warm, welcoming downtown shop perfectly encapsulates Boulder’s style: Cool, but comfortable. Stylish but decidedly un-fussy. Urban with a hint of outdoorsy-ness. Browse racks full of premium denim, breezy linen and drape-y velvet; walls of canvas and leather handbags; and cases of crave-able jewelry.

Let’s keep shopping, shall we? See another list of must-see shops.

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