Along the river front is a nicely landscaped and layed-out mall. LL Bean, Factory Outlet, Coldwater Creek, Macys Outlet, Lillian Vernon, Blair, Dress Barn, Factory Brand Shoes, L'Eggs/Hanes, Nautica Outlet, et.al. are available for hours and hours of shopping.
Well-lit, safe, with easy parking; there is even a shuttle.
Restaurant and ice cream parlor along the river front when you get hungry.
Benches and trees and flowers for relaxing after getting all those great deals (steals).
What to buy: This is an outlet mainly mall. Deep discount prices on off-season and out-of-date articles.
This place is a complete and total waste of time. I typically avoid
going anywhere downtown, with the Grand, the Playhouse, and the Hotel as exceptions but my little sister talked me into taking her to The Shipyard Shops. What a DUMP!!! As of this date, the only store remaining is the L'eggs/Hanes/Bali/Playtex Factory Outlet.
As I looked around to view the travesty someone had the humour to refer to as a mall, I felt sorry for my sister. She's 13 and was rather excited to have a "girls day" of shopping with her big sister. Putting on a sunny face, I cheerfully said " Jenny let's have a look 'round Hanes and you can pick out what you like." We browsed for about 10 minutes in what was an untidy store that quite evidently catered to the working class and is frequented by Wilmington's underclass.
Walking back to the car feeling completely frustrated, it dawned on me that I had left many of my summer clothes back at college. As it was still morning, I suggested to Jenny we go up to the King of Prussia mall. As we were leaving the parking area Jenny looked out ofthe window and said " Goodbye SH*Tyard shops."
Ha! I hadn't laughed that hard in months.
What to buy: Can't think of a thing.
What to pay: A day in misery.
After experiencing the affluence of Winterthur, we found ourselves outside The Museum Shop and wandered in to see what it offered.
In no time at all I discovered a colorful display of delicate perfume bottles. The price seemed reasonable, so I selected one to place in my collection. It's still the only bottle in my collection that is not vintage or antique, but it's pretty...that counts for something, right? (picture 2)!
The Museum Shop carries many lovely things: garden accessories, plants, books, home furnishings, jewelry. Christmas ornaments and other trinkets. Hours are Tues.-Sun. from 10am-5:30 pm.
(picture courtesy of Winterthur)
Back when I was a kid, the Kirkwood Highway, rt. 2, was the main shopping drag, with Prices Corner beginning the shopping road.
Nowadays, it's the Concord Pike. This is miles and miles of shopping centers. You name it, you can buy it somewhere on this road! Concord Mall is not as big as nearby Christiana Mall, but they've kept up-to-date and have the very popular Boscov's Dept. Store as their anchor. There are at least a dozen of other shopping strips on both sides of the pike. Keep heading north to get to the Beaver Valley Shopping Center; another biggie, with Target, Home Depot, Bed, Bath and Beyond, Old Navy, and more.
What to buy: just about anything you're looking for
What to pay: no taxes in Delaware! yeah, baby!
Before the restaurants started popping up all over the Riverfront, the shops came. The Shipyard shops are built along the riverfront in two long, low brick rectangular buildings. Very pleasing architectual design. Overhangs running the length of the buildings keep you dry if it should rain.
What to buy: My favorites here are:
LL Bean (good size one- has a few canoes and some furniture as well as clothes and hiking gear)
Lillian Vernon- cool stuff for your yard and home
I'm estimating there are about 50 stores. This is still growing so I expect more shops as time goes on...
What to pay: Supposedly 'Outlet' prices, but are they? I don't shop much so I don't know enough to compare!
Tum and Joel Wilson have selected beautiful clothing, jewelry, and tchotchkes from Tum's homeland.
What to buy: Silver jewelry, wooden boxes, many cat and elephant icons. This is an especially great place for little jewelry boxes and other attractive ways to organize those tiny objects that are always getting lost. They also have fancy handmade "saa" paper which could be used in all sorts of imaginative ways.
Wilmington was lucky to steal designer Michael Dodson from New York and LA. His hand-decorated T-shirts and sweatshirts make great gifts.
What to buy: Look for his "Rehobuff", "Trolley Square", and "Old School" designs. He will also do custom work.
What to pay: His stuff is a bargain for unique original wearable art.
Hey, everything in life shouldn't be trendy. Come here for classic fragrances and Victorian stuff.
Pat, who runs the place, also does Tarot readings. I'd believe anything she tells me.
What to buy: A great place for perfume, but don't overlook the artwork.
Eclectica lives up to its name. Art, vintage clothing, quirky retro "stuff", raku... Next time you need to find a gift, get something that didn't come from the mall.
What to buy: Forget the gift...get something for yourself! Andrew and Joanne will make sure you find just the right tchotchke.