Readers poll winner
Charlotte's Optical Co.
76 S. Sierra Madre St., Suite Q, 473-8066
Don't call Charlotte's Optical just a glasses store. While helping you see, Charlotte's makes its reputation in catering to how the world sees you. At Charlotte's you can pick designer and one-of-a-kind frames that will allow you to whisper, announce or scream, all without moving a muscle. Be simple and elegant, or seek out the perfect purple Swarovski crystal-encrusted glasses. And for those of you who have a hard time deciding, check out one of Charlotte's best features: You can get digital pictures of you sporting different specs, and e-mail them to your friends and family for their takes. -- SJG
Best Arch Support
Brown's Shoe Fit Co.
123 N. Tejon St., 635-1575
Yes, they look good, but they're bad for your feet.
Yes, they make your calves look sexy, but they're bad for your feet.
At the end of the day, do you want enhanced calves, or good feet?
Brown's Shoe Fit sees to it that you've got a wide variety of choices beyond Barbie-toes and arch-breakers. Clogs in every color and style imaginable. Sturdy shoes. European shoes. Shoes your grandmother would approve of. Shoes that will last long beyond your next birthday. Stick your toes in a Dansko or a Birkenstock, and you'll never go pointy again. And that's OK -- this is Colorado, after all. -- KCE
Best Place for Unique, Inexpensive Jewelry
1312 W. Colorado
They still say, after all this time, that diamonds are a girl's best friend. But Eve's Revolution can be a girl's budget-wise accessory savior. Before you know it, the collection of funky-and-chunky to dressy-and-classy necklaces, bracelets and earrings will find their way into your wardrobe. When you find a piece you just can't live without, snap it up; if you turn your back, it'll become another girl's best friend in no time. And the jewelry is one (or two) of a kind, so it's not likely to be restocked for your next visit. -- CSB
Best Women's Fashion
Readers poll winner
218 N. Tejon St.,
Were you so inclined, you probably could follow, bloodhound-style, the fashion spoor of the devastatingly well-dressed right back to Idor. Its new location has vastly expanded stock, including men's clothing, and collections by Diesel, Ben Sherman, Custo, Trina Turk, AG and everyone else who'll make you look chic and urban -- and most importantly, exponentially snazzier than everyone around you. With the crme de la crme of accessories and apparel, an appropriately stylish andmega-helpful staff and a great new store, Idor's the jewel in the downtown fashion crown. -- AR
Bon Shoe Repair
2129 N. Weber St.
(behind Bon Shopping
The best-kept secret of modern frugality is the cobbler. This local shop has been oiling hide, replacing soles and stitching leather since 1957, and owner Wes Simmons has been at it for 25 years. His service is superb, and to keep his loyal customers happy, turnaround time is just a few days. Prices are very reasonable, probably less than a 13-year-old Nike factory worker in Indonesia makes in a whole month. A quality pair of shoes, maintained regularly, can last more than 10 years, says Simmons. How's that for conservative values? -- AM
Best Dry Cleaner
Readers poll winner
6780 N. Academy Blvd., 531-7130
1043 N. Academy Blvd., 591-7549
1638 S. Nevada Ave., 477-9902
If you're among the legions of shoppers who forget to look for that dreaded "Dry Clean Only" tag before purchasing a new piece of clothing, it's time to heave a sigh of relief. Even if you shun natural fibers and abhor the crinkling of plastic garment bags, there's one thing Continental Cleaners won't offend: your wallet. The Colorado chain has made a name for itself by offering the best prices available. Here in town, the South Nevada location charges $1.50 for any garment, and the two Academy locations are in that ballpark as well. Add to those prices a fast turnaround time and friendly staff, and there's no reason to warily inspect your new clothes' tags ever again. -- BLS
Citadel Mall, 750 Citadel Drive, 596-0690
Leave the department store shopping lists behind and plunge your feet into a soothing foot bath instead. Adjust the pulsating, rolling and tapping massage chair, grab a current fashion magazine and forget the world. A pedicure from Glamour Salon in Citadel Mall (second floor, just outside Dillard's) is about more than polished toenails. It's a 50-minute self-indulgence. The calf and foot rub is at least as satisfying as the final aesthetics of well-tended digits. Just walk in and choose from nearly 300 colors. Revitalization for less than a quarter a minute can't be beat. -- KCC