Date: June 2, 2014 | Producer: Blythe Cate |
As the central point and capital city of our state, Little Rock is home to a wide variety of interior and exterior design resources and stores, locally owned clothing and gift boutiques, and delicious dining establishments. Follow along as we discover new stops and cherish beloved favorites in the metro area.
EATS & SWEETS
Start your adventure with a breakfast bite at Rosalia’s Family Bakery, located on Kavanaugh Boulveard. Have the croissant you’ve been craving with a chai tea latte. When you build up your appetite again, we recommend lunch at Boulevard Bread Company, which has several locations around the city and serves a mix of fresh salads and sandwiches, as well as charcuterie, artisan cheeses, and other local products. Keep your eyes peeled for their baked sweets, too.
Later in the day, when you’re looking for an afternoon treat, head to the Green Corner Store, located in the popular South Main (SoMa) area for handcrafted ice cream by Loblolly Creamery. Pair it with a fizzy soda to cool down on a hot summer day. Finally, for a contemporary fine dining experience, we suggest dinner at the River Market’s new hot spot Cache (501-850-0265, cachelittlerock.com). Start your meal with oysters, followed by the prosciutto-wrapped rabbit or hearth-fired cowboy rib-eye steak.
If the man in your life needs a wardrobe update, head to Bauman’s (501-227-8797, baumans.com) for the latest in menswear. Whether you’re seeking USA-made Hamilton dress shirts, Creed cologne, a new Peter Millar sweater, or a hand-stitched Oxford suit, they have pieces to fit every man’s style.
Next, head just across the street and pop into Catering to You(501-614-9030, cateringtoyouinlittlerock.com). While this local favorite does cater to any event, they specialize in more than just exceptional food, offering a variety of serving pieces, napkins, Razorback accessories, aprons, and more neccessities to create a polished event. If you’re looking for the perfect present, don’t miss their selection of wedding and hostess gifts, including Vietri dinnerware, candles, and delicious sauces and jellies.
From there, we suggest going west on Cantrell Road to shop at Pleasant Ridge Town Center. Spice up your decor with a visit to Embellish (501-223-6965), a home goods store with a wide selection of furnishings and accessories. Freshen up your living room with one of their local pieces of artwork or a European-style chair. You’ll find numerous options in dinnerware for your next party (don’t miss their large trays made from wine barrels) and much more. Embellish’s unique pieces can add the finishing touch to any room or gathering.
While you’re at Pleasant Ridge, be sure to visit Pout, formerly know as Glo Limited, (501-224-8222). The open, airy shop has you covered for all your skincare needs, from makeup to peels and facials to custom airbrush tanning. Treat yourself to a new Essie summer nail color or Archipelago coconut sugar scrub while you’re there.
Finally, step just next door to Beyond Cotton II (501-221-1539) for fabulous fashion finds including G. Spinelli necklaces, Eileen Fisher fair trade organic boyfriend jeans, Dolce Vita sandals, and trend-setting leather shorts. This is the place to find those must-haves for your beach vacation or road trip this summer.
From there, hop back in the car and continue your journey west on Cantrell Road to Companions (501-868-8484, companionsboutique.com), an upscale women’s clothing store that describes their style as “classic with a twist.” You’ll want to venture here to find a classy, fresh, and chic ensemble for your next summer event or party. Owner Pamela Rees stocks the shop with a wide selection of costume jewelry, vintage pieces, handbags, clutches, and shoes, in addition to clothing lines such as Joie and Michael Stars.
West Little Rock is also home to The Label (501-367-8280), one of the best places to find daywear for men of all ages. We recommend a colorful, summer Jared Lang button-down or Robert Graham tee for casual weekend style.
We also love to shop the Heights area of the metro for fashion and accessories, as well as home décor. Don’t miss the recently opened Southern Accented (501-747-1150, southernaccented.com), a boutique offering everything from party dresses to hostess gifts, all tailored to the modern woman’s style. The cheerful shop features lines such as Bobi (which makes soft tees that are ideal for warm weather) and Rifle Paper Co. along with fun frocks to attend any summer gathering, an assortment of jewelry and handbags, and many other accessories.
Stroll down Kavanaugh Boulevard to Tulips (501-614-7343, tulipsarkansas.com), a hip women’s boutique that carries the latest in contemporary trends. Find a dashing designer dress at the shop (perhaps Britt Ryan or Judith & James) and pair it with a bold statement necklace. After 12 years in business, owner Emily Brown can help you find a fabulous outfit for any event from a pool party to date night.Just a short drive down the street sits another gem for finding fashion and furnishings.
Haus Werk (501-663-5251,shophauswerk.com) in the Hillcrest neighborhood offers an eclectic mix of décor, lighting, art, women’s and children’s clothing, gifts, and accessories. We love their Mindy Gold wrap bracelets, festive artisan jewelry, Peruvian embroidered belts, and Mason jar iced tea glasses. You’ll find a little of everything in this diverse, expertly curated store.
If you’re in search of a gift for someone special (or a treat for yourself!), we recommend making a stop at The Full Moon (501-663-4367, thefullmoonlittlerock.com), a beloved locally owned shop that has been in business for 30 years. You’ll find their exclusive lines of McCarty’s pottery and sophisticated Julia Knight serving ware alongside beach-ready Gretchen Scott tunics and an array of other household items, jewelry, and decorative wares.
Last but not least, delight your senses with a few fresh stems to polish off a day of shopping. We suggest the marvelous floral designs of Tanarah Luxe Floral (501-372-1400, designsbytanarah.com), located near Cajan’s Wharf. No matter the season or style—imaginably modern, vintage, natural, or classic—owner and designer Tanarah Haynie will create the freshest and loveliest bouquet to complement your home in an inspired and spirited way.
MAKE IT HOME
If you call Little Rock home—or plan to do so soon—you need a list of trusted home design and renovation professionals. Luckily, we know just the people to call.
Whether you’re adding lighting or need new furniture and artwork, we recommend I.O. Metro (501-217-0300, iometro.com) for quick home refreshers. Many of the items in their showroom are customizable, and the store offers a free design service to help you plan your space.
Next, pop in Martinous Oriental Rug Company (501-224-0313, martinous.com) to find a stunning Persian or Oriental rug. The family owned and operated business offers a wide selection of artistic carpets from brands like Karastan, Nourison, Oriental Weavers, and more, as well as complete rug cleaning services.
If you’re thinking about a deck or patio update, visit Antique Brick Outdoors(501-375-0060, antiquebrickoutdoors.com). This hidden gem is located on 9th Street in an attractive and unique 7,000-square-foot space. The showroom features the latest in outdoor furniture, grills, fireplaces, fire pits, and outdoor accessories.
For everything from organization ideas to accessories, swing by Little Rock’s budding design district (located near Cajun’s Wharf). Upgrade your storage systems at Closet Factory (866-833-2105, blog.closetfactoryarkansas.com) with features that create space you never knew you had—whether it is in a child’s or his/her closet, a garage space, laundry room, or kitchen. Visit their shop for a consultation and to find inspiration for your own spaces.
Step next door to Providence Design (501-372-1886, providenceltddesign.com) to view their huge selection of hand-picked antiques, vintage wares, and home design accessories. Owned by sisters Mona Thompson and Talena Ray, their European aesthetic is seen throughout the space. If you want to get the look in your own home, contact them for full-service designs.
From there, walk a few shops down to The Shade Above (501-374-3555, theshadeabove.com) for a one-of-a-kind lamp or replacement shade. Not only does the shop’s selection include hand-made lamps (crafted from candlesticks and antique pieces), but they can also apply monograms and distinctive trims on shades of numerous styles.
If you consider your style to be clean, upbeat, and transitional, visit Bear-Hill Interiors (501-907-9272, bearhillinteriors.com) on Rebsamen Park Road, which also offers complete interior design services. Spruce up your home for the season with their bright pillows, abstract art, and chic accessories. Their selection of crisp home décor pieces can create a timeless appeal in any home.
Just a short drive down the road, visit Hadidi Rug and Design Gallery (501-225-8999) to upgrade a living room or dining area with a selection from their wide variety of oriental rugs. Choose from an assortment of colors, sizes, and styles to find the perfect match for any room.
If antiques catch your eye, you must visit Ellen Golden Antiques (501-664-7746) in the Heights. Step inside to transport yourself to 19th-century France with décor, gift items, art, and unusual pieces of furniture. Notice the amazing selection of landscape and still-life paintings—many by local artists—that hang alongside the European furniture and accessories.
Next, if you head just outside of Little Rock, you’ll find Benton’s Lewis Lighting and Home (501-315-2400, lewislightingandhome.com). Hanging fixtures of all shapes and sizes will catch your eye—like the Selamat wicker chandeliers (they have chairs available, too!) as shown above. The shop also offers home décor and fans, as well as indoor and outdoor lighting.
On the way back to Little Rock, stop by Congo Fireplace & Patio (501-316-4328, congofp.com) to kick off your summer. Family-owned since 1920, the 20,000-square-foot showroom offers a wide selection of outdoor furniture, grills (like the Big Green Egg!), smokers, and fire pits—everything you need for your next cookout. In addition, they also carry wood and pellet stoves, wood and gas fireplaces, and gas logs to prepare you for cooler weather.
If a larger home makeover calls, Inside Effects (501-954-8866, insideeffects.com) provides turnkey service from the design phase all the way to installation. Whether you’re remodeling your kitchen or refreshing your bath, the team works with each client personally, from start to finish. If you are planning an exterior project, consult the outdoor portion of the business, known as Outside Effects (outsideeffects.com), for expertise on remodeling projects, outdoor kitchen design, and more.
Starting from scratch? You’ll need Parkinson Building Group (501-352-2033, parkinsonbuildinggroup.com), a custom home building firm reowned for their quailty craftmanship. The talented staff, led by Bill Parkinson, is committed to creating a pleasurable and satisfying experience as you build your dream home.
If in need of a lawn or garden transformation, look no further than Horticare (501-407-2727, horticare.net), a company that provides landscape design and installation, irrigation installation and repair, and lawn chemical service for a healthy turf, as well as a full-service nursery.
Finally, we suggest driving over to Rodney Parham Road for an outdoor upgrade at Ken Rash’s new location (501-663-1818, kenrashsoutdoorfurniture.com). We love their Lloyd Flanders wicker furniture, Gensun cooking pieces, and Kingsley-Bate Palm Springs collection. You don’t want to miss their exquisite mix of furniture and appliances for any outdoor entertaining occasion.