BEST BOUTIQUE - 2006
The spring-green facade of this shop is easy to miss. Hidden in the shadows just off of Uptown's main drag, Design Collective is an incubator for new designers. The suspended wire racks hold nothing but local creations, from completely original pieces to thick-knitted accessories to old apparel that's been chopped up and revamped. In addition to the tres chic, asymmetrically hemmed garments, the shop carries more playful (and some might say safer) selections, like wallets woven out of paint swatches and faux-gem and bent-wire jewelry. Beyond the nifty threads, the folks at Design Collective are making the world of haute couture accessible to young local designers, not to mention the rest of us who only recognize the term "haute couture" from episodes of Project Runway.