A guide to Highland Park
Straddling the borders of Eastside neighbors Glassell Park and Eagle Rock, hip Highland Park has quickly become one of L.A.’s most sought-after destinations for indie shopping—so much so that it’s even been compared to reigning hipster mecca Silver Lake (gasp). The burgeoning 'hood is crawling with enough hole-in-the-wall record stores, vintage clothing shops and mom-and-pop bookstores to make chain retailers and mega malls look like they’re going out of style. Whether you’re looking for ‘60s-style frocks, small-press tomes, rare vinyl (so much vinyl) or vintage furnishings, Highland Park’s two main thoroughfares, York Boulevard and Figueroa Street, have it all. Here, we’ve scoped out the neighborhood’s best local haunts.
Shopping in Highland Park
Live your best midcentury-modern life by way of this vintage-furniture mecca, which feels way more like a wonderland than a warehouse. Between the '60s couches, lamps, coffee tables, ceramics and flawless teak sideboards, desks, maps and wall art, one step inside and it's hard to tell if you're still in 2017. (Don't worry—you are and smartphones still exist.)
Sure, there are cookbooks at Cookbook, but those who know the sibling store in Echo Park already know that gardening goddess Marta Teegan's neighborhood grocery is so much more. Find locally- and responsibly- grown produce, plus specialty and heirloom-grain pantry items, housewares, meat, coffee, ceramics, flowers and freshly baked loaves of bread. Hungry? Don't skip the deli counter and its daily rotation of gourmet sandwiches and house-baked pastries.
This chic-meets-rustic shop sells a little something for everyone, with a focus on women's clothing and home goods. Cookbooks, bespoke children's toys, dish towels, jewelry, craftsman soap, handmade pottery: You name it and Dotter has it, making it one of Highland Park's go-tos for gift shopping and more.
Opening up a New York record store in 1994—amidst the rise of CDs—seemed like a crazy idea. And moving that store to Highland Park in the middle of streaming-service ascendancy? Even crazier. But Gimme Gimme Records has endured, and it now calls an increasingly hip stretch of Fig home for its genre-hopping selection. The shop specializes in used and hard-to-find records, and even boasts housecalls if you're looking to sell a particularly large collection.
While old and new records hold center court inside the Figueroa locale, Mount Analog also plays host to unique artwork, films, books, graphic tees and, most notably, live events. The ever-evolving LP collection spans categories from jazz, blues and R&B to 20th century, experimental and all your favorite rock genres. Check out their website for upcoming events like live music performances, gallery showings from local artists, movie screenings and book signings. Whether you're a veteran record junkie or first-time vinyl user, Mount Analog has the tunes to satisfy your musical cravings.
Permanent Records houses a wide variety of pop, post-punk, rock 'n' roll and hip-hop LPs from scores of older and newer artists. The shop was originally located in Eagle Rock, but has taken up residence in Highland Park as well as Echo Park (in the space previously owned by Origami Vinyl, R.I.P.). Find a plethora of limited editions of obscure releases here, and discover a new favorite or rediscover old classics in the small but carefully curated collection. The Chicago-based record store/label is also engaged in the community, putting on shows with touring and local bands and DJing in the neighborhood.
Nestled on York, this neighborhood bookstore and print studio is a treasure trove of handcrafted trinkets—think artisanal notebook covers and pencil cases in fabrics screen-printed by the Pop-Hop’s owner, Robey Clark—plus new and used books, small press, zines and more. It’s a celebration of all things local. Indie tomes rest on wooden shelves while a small studio sits behind the bookcases for zine-making workshops, arts and crafts and more. Drop by the under-the-radar locale for a taste of that mom-and-pop charm we love and don't get enough of.
On the hunt for all things vintage? Look no further than this longtime, hole-in-the-wall boutique. Possession Vintage caters to L.A.'s vintage vixens with styles like '60s floral-printed frocks, silk embroidered kimonos, bomber jackets, '70s graphic tees and oversized shades. From boho babes to the urban rock 'n' roller, this indie hot spot has enough accessories and garb to satisfy an expansive range of styles. Catch Possession Vintage on Sundays at Melrose Trading Post.
Iron Curtain Press made a name on the indie paper-goods scene with charming letterpressed cards, stylish notebooks and custom work. Now Rosanna and Joel Kvernmo, the artists behind the brand, have moved to a new print studio along York and opened up the front as a retail storefront, carrying their house lines as well as a selection of office goods, cards and items from other brands. Everything here is color-coded and cute; good luck walking out without buying a dozen items.
Stepping inside this funky vintage shop is like transporting to a different era, thanks to its evolving roster of psychedelic prints, polka-dot dresses, floral-imbued clutches, vintage shades and knitted sweaters that have all made a comeback from grandma’s closet. This hidden gem is chock-full of looks from the ’60s and ’70s (think dresses, vests, slacks, tops, coats and more) for both men and women. Just like its larger, upscale sister store SquaresVille in Los Feliz, you'll find vintage necklaces, bracelets, rings and headpieces to complement your style for the ultimate throwback ensemble.