One-of-a-kind boutiques make up an important part of the contemporary Charleston shopping experience. Long-established Christian Michi anchors the corner of Market and King; its window displays are like works of art, and its innovative and European designs are treasured by well-heeled, sophisticated clients. Some department stores cater to younger shoppers, and high-end shops sell either their own designer fashions, or carry names that are found in Paris, New York, and South Beach, like Kate Spade in the Shops at Belmond Charleston Place.

The number and quality of shoe stores on King Street is surprising for the city's size. Family-owned shops like Berlin's are city institutions. Newer shops like Sugar Snap Pea are popular with families.

The Upper King District is interspersed with clothing boutiques and restaurants. The revival of this neighborhood has sparked a new wave of home-fashion stores; long-term antiques hunters, accustomed to buying on Lower King, have been lured uptown as well. Charleston has more than 25 fine-art galleries, making it one of the top art towns in America. Local Lowcountry art, which includes both traditional landscapes of the region as well as more contemporary takes, is among the most prevalent styles here. Such innovative artists as Betty Anglin Smith and Fred Jamar, a Belgian known for his whimsical nighttime cityscapes, can give you a piece of Charleston to keep close until your next visit. Collectors will find nationally and internationally renowned work in such exquisite galleries as Ann Long Fine Art and the more contemporary Martin Gallery.

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  • 1. Hampden Clothing

    Lower King | Clothing

    One of the city's trendiest boutiques attracts the young and well-heeled, who come here for an edgier, New York–influenced style. Hot designers...Read More

  • 2. Robert Lange Studios

    Market | Art Galleries

    The most avant of the contemporary galleries, this striking, minimalist space is a working studio for Robert Lange and other exceptionally talented...Read More

  • 3. Worthwhile

    Lower King | Gifts/Souvenirs

    Designer women's clothing, shoes, and jewelry make it fun to shop at this boutique in a 19th-century historic home. You can also find artsy...Read More

  • 4. Billy Reid

    Lower King | Clothing

    The darling of Southern tailors offers fashion-forward shoppers the best in aristocratic men's and women's clothing. Be sure to check out the...Read More

  • 5. Caviar and Bananas

    College of Charleston Campus | Food/Candy

    This upscale specialty market and café features out-of-the-ordinary items like a duck confit sandwich and pad Thai sushi rolls. It's an ideal...Read More

  • 6. Christian Michi

    Lower King | Clothing

    This shop carries tony women's clothing and accessories. Designers from Italy, such as Piazza Sempione, are represented, as is European line...Read More

  • 7. Copper Penny

    Lower King | Clothing

    This longtime local clothier sells trendy dresses and women's apparel from designers like Trina Turk, MILLY, Tibi, and Diane von Furstenberg...Read More

  • 8. ellington

    Market | Clothing

    Chic and classy, this shop is known for its washable, packable women's clothing made of feel-good fabrics like silk, linen, and cashmere. Its...Read More

  • 9. Ellis-Nicholson Gallery

    South of Broad | Art Galleries

    With works by painters and sculptors, from those just starting their careers to veterans with international reputations, this gallery has a...Read More

  • 10. Farushga

    South of Broad | Shoes/Luggage/Leather Goods

    Farushga sells high-quality, cutting-edge handbags and Italian shoes for both men and women, from chic daytime looks to pulling-out-all-the...Read More

  • 11. Finicky Filly

    Lower King | Clothing

    This mother/daughter-owned boutique carries exceptional women's apparel, jewelry, and handbags by such designers as Lela Rose, Tory Burch, All...Read More

  • 12. Freshfields Village

    Shopping Neighborhoods

    At the crossroads of Kiawah and Seabrook islands, this shopping area includes a variety of homegrown stores. There are French and Italian restaurants...Read More

  • 13. Ibu

    Lower King | Clothing

    Artisans from 34 countries contribute the elaborate and intricate textiles used to make the mostly women's clothing for sale here. The brightly...Read More

  • 14. Indigo and Cotton

    Cannonborough | Clothing

    This men's store is the go-to boutique for the latest in gentlemen's tailoring featuring brands such as Gitman Vintage, Filson Red Label bags...Read More

  • 15. Kids on King

    Lower King | Clothing

    This shop's world-traveling owners offer the finest in children's apparel, accessories, and toys from just about everywhere. You'll be transported...Read More

  • 16. King Street

    Shopping Neighborhoods

    The city's main shopping strip is divided into informal districts: Lower King (from Broad Street to Market Street) is the Antiques District...Read More

  • 17. Mac and Murphy

    Cannonborough | Gifts/Souvenirs

    This hole-in-the-wall is for anyone who favors old-fashioned methods of communication, with the trendiest in notepads, pens, wrapping paper...Read More

  • 18. Mount Pleasant Towne Centre

    Shopping Neighborhoods

    Across the Ravenel Bridge, this mall has 60 stores, including Old Navy, Barnes & Noble, and the locally owned Copper Penny. It's also home...Read More

  • 19. Sugar Snap Pea

    Lower King | Clothing

    This sweet shop stocks the ultimate in kids' wear, from Petit Bateau to Jellycat and Tea Collection. Owner Zhenya Kuhne keeps the clothing options...Read More

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