Oregon is one of the five states in America that does not have sales tax (others: New Hampshire, Delaware, Montana, Alaska). I repeat, THERE IS NO SALES TAX. So you have the green light to shop till you drop. I haven’t been very into shopping lately, but I have say Portland has some really unique and local stores to choose from to get that perfect souvenir for a friend or to remember your trip by.
North Mississippi Ave
This is not a store, but a street lined with really great boutiques and eateries. Park on towards the end of the street and work your way down one side and back up the other. I loved the fashion stores and the outdoorsy stores, but my favorite had to be one that really lacks the confines of a label: Flutter [3948 N Mississippi Ave, Portland, OR 97227]. This store is really like no other, filled with the prettiest retro postcards,
that vintage poodle skirt you know you need,
jewelry, books, art, knick-knacks, and just everything good.
It really impressed me. Oh and you want to know what put it over the edge for me? King.
King is the store cat who is really sweet and a little mentally impaired. His tongue sticks out, he’s cross eyed, and he looooves to be scratched at the base of his tail. He even has his own memorabilia.
So head to N. Mississippi for Flutter, and stay for the rest of the block because there are other great gems.
Powell’s City of Books, 1005 W Burnside St. Portland, OR 97209
This is the world’s largest independent bookstore spanning an entire city block, a bibliophile dreamland. Honestly it’s a little overwhelming, I hope you wear your hiking boots. Look at all of those floors!
Don’t worry there is an elevator too, but you can really just spend some time in here and get lost. The sections are all labeled, of course I made my way to the travel nook.
I found a great book with pop up cat art.
Also, a wall with little books.
How sweet. Every interest is covered, but there are all those cool little bookstore chotchkies in there too. This is a must-stop on any trip to Portland!
Portland Saturday Market, Tom McCall Waterfront Park, 2 SW Naito Pkwy, Portland, OR 97204
We happened to visit the city during the storm of the century. There was some flooding, but really it didn’t seem that bad to me! Forgetting about all of the fear mongering about the storm, we made our way to the market.
Open since 1974, this is the largest continually operating outdoor market in the nation, with over 250 small businesses participating! I was ready for some market-goodness. When we got there it was a bit desolate. There were a few brave vendors open, some selling some quality items, but not nearly as many as there would normally be.
I had to admit I was a bit disappointed. How was this so highly acclaimed? I stopped a local holding a beautiful bouquet of flowers to confirm what I thought to be true. She said that the weather kept most of the vendors away, usually the market is indeed amazing and absolutely bustling. So if you are visiting during normal weather conditions, I’m sure this is a fantastic place to do some shopping. I hope to see it in full swing on my next trip to the city!