Washington, D.C.

Despite the fact that going to "the Mall" in D.C. doesn’t mean you’re going shopping, Washington offers fabulous stores that sell serious or silly souvenirs, designer fashions, recycled and green goods, books about almost everything, and handicrafts. Even if you are headed to the mall, our nation’s Mall, that is, you’ll discover that plenty of collections housed along the famous greensward, such as the Smithsonian museums and the National Gallery of Art, sell interesting keepsakes in their gift shops.

Beyond the Mall, smaller one-of-a-kind shops, designer boutiques, and interesting specialty collections add to Washington’s shopping scene alongside stores that have been part of the landscape for generations. Weekdays, Downtown street vendors add to the mix by offering funky jewelry; brightly patterned ties; buyer-beware watches; sunglasses; and African-inspired clothing, accessories, and art. Discriminating shoppers will find satisfaction at upscale malls on the city's outskirts. Not surprisingly, T-shirts and Capitol City souvenirs are in plentiful supply.

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  • 1. A Mano


    The name is Italian for "by hand," and it lives up to this moniker, stocking colorful hand-painted ceramics, hand-dyed tablecloths, blown-glass stemware, hand-embroidered bed linens, and other home and garden accessories by American, English, Italian, and French artisans. Some of the jewelry pieces are simply stunning, and the kids' gifts are adorable. You can also get certain items monogrammed on-site.

    1677 Wisconsin Ave. NW, Washington, District of Columbia, 20007, USA
  • 2. Ann Hand


    Catering to Washington's influential and prestigious, this jewelry and gift shop specializing in patriotic pins may seem intimidating, but prices begin at $35. Hand's signature pin, the Liberty Eagle, is $200. Photos on the walls above brightly lit display cases show the city's most prominent figures wearing their designs, making this a worthwhile visit while shopping in Georgetown.

    3236 Prospect St. NW, Washington, District of Columbia, 20007, USA

    Shop Details

    Rate Includes: Closed weekends
  • 3. Betsy Fisher

    Dupont Circle | Clothing

    Catering to women of all ages and sizes in search of contemporary and trendy styles, this elegant shop offers one-of-a-kind accessories, clothes, shoes, and jewelry by American, Canadian, and European designers, including popular Montréal designers Marie Saint Pierre, Iris Setlakwe, and Judith & Charles.

    1224 Connecticut Ave. NW, Washington, District of Columbia, 20036, USA
  • 4. Capitol Coin & Stamp Co


    Are you searching for a William Howard Taft candy dish? How about a William McKinley 1896 campaign button? It's all here, whether you need it or not. Capitol Coin is a charming political memorabilia and coin shop (they don't sell stamps, despite the name), just a hop and skip from the White House. In the basement of a building next to the Secret Service, it's not easy to find, but for political junkies, it's worth the effort. It's been in operation at various locations for more than 40 years. The priciest political artifact is a medallion of George Washington's presidency that goes for about $2,000, but most offerings are relatively modest. For mementos, Capitol Coin beats the airport gift shops by a long shot.

    1616 H St. NW, Washington, District of Columbia, 20006, USA

    Shop Details

    Rate Includes: Closed Wed.
  • 5. Downtown Holiday Market


    This yearly holiday outdoor market is located in Penn Quarter, transforming two city blocks on F Street into a one-stop shop, open-air winter wonderland. The market features local businesses and entrepreneurs across the region, finding unique, festive treasures in the heart of the District starting mid-November and usually going through a few days before Christmas. The outdoor shopping village’s expansive footprint allows for wide aisles for shopping, browsing, and also indulging in food stalls by local restaurants.

    F St. NW and 9th St. NW, Washington, District of Columbia, 20001, USA

    Shop Details

    Rate Includes: Seasonal event: from mid-November to end of December
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  • 6. East City Bookshop

    Capitol Hill

    A gathering spot for residents and visitors alike, East City stocks a wide selection of books, as well as art supplies, gifts, and toys. Check out the calendar of events, too—there's everything from story time for children to author-led book discussions to musical performances.

    645 Pennsylvania Ave. SE, Washington, District of Columbia, 20003, USA

    Shop Details

    Rate Includes: Closed Sun. and Mon.
  • 7. Eastern Market

    Eastern Market

    For 150-plus years, this has been the hub of the Capitol Hill community. Vibrantly colored produce and flowers, freshly caught fish, fragrant cheeses, and tempting sweets are sold at the market by independent vendors. On weekends year-round, local farmers sell fresh fruits and vegetables (Tuesdays, too), and artists and exhibitors sell handmade arts and crafts, jewelry, antiques, collectibles, and furniture from around the world. A flea market unfurls on Sundays. The city's oldest continuously operating public market continues to be a vibrant and lively gathering place, complete with entertainment, art showings, and a pottery studio for residents and visitors alike.

    225 7th St. SE, Washington, District of Columbia, 20003, USA

    Shop Details

    Rate Includes: Indoor market closed Mon.
  • 8. Fahrney's Pens


    What began in 1929 as a repair shop and a pen bar—a place to fill your fountain pen before setting out for work—is now a wonderland for anyone who loves a good writing instrument. You'll find pens in silver, gold, and lacquer by the world's leading manufacturers. If you want to improve your handwriting, the store offers classes in calligraphy and cursive. And yes, the store still offers repair services for all writing instruments—in this digital age Fahrneys' endures.

    1317 F St. NW, Washington, District of Columbia, 20004, USA

    Shop Details

    Rate Includes: Closed weekends
  • 9. GoodWood

    U Street

    It's described by its owners as an American mercantile and dry goods store, but when you open the door, you'll feel as if you've been invited into a friend's warm and inviting loft. Displays throughout the store beautifully showcase 19th-century antique furniture. You'll also discover leather goods; vintage mirrors and other decorative home items; men's and women's grooming products and perfumes from around the world; Peruvian alpaca and wool scarves; Swedish clogs; and comfortable dresses, sweaters, and tops from American and international designers.

    1428 U St. NW, Washington, District of Columbia, 20009, USA
  • 10. Grand Cata


    Best friends Julio Robledo and Pedro Rodriguez teamed up to open this wine and spirits store focusing on small Latin American producers. You can find a rare Uruguayan Tannat or a fine Mexican sparkling wine. Not a wine drinker? Grand Cata also offers a wide selection of spirits, mostly from small-batch producers in Mexico and Spain, as well as craft beers. Don't forget the snacks: the selection here includes those from Rodriguez's native Puerto Rico. Wine- and food-centered books, cocktail bar accessories, and other musings make unique gifts. Check the shop's calendar for details on free wine tastings.

    1550 7th St. NW, Washington, District of Columbia, 20001, USA
  • 11. Indian Craft Shop

    Foggy Bottom

    Jewelry, pottery, sand paintings, weavings, and baskets from more than 45 Native American tribes, including Navajo, Zuni, Cherokee, and Mohawk, are offered at this shop, located at the Department of the Interior. Items range from jewelry costing as little as $5 to collector-quality art pieces selling for more than $10,000. This shop has been open since 1938, and you will need an ID card to enter as it's inside a federal building.

    1849 C St. NW, Washington, District of Columbia, 20240, USA

    Shop Details

    Rate Includes: Closed Sat.–Mon. (except 3rd Sat. of each month) and federal holidays
  • 12. Jewelers' Werk Galerie


    If you're looking for statement jewelry or just want to admire wearable art, add Jewelers' Werk Galerie to your list. Owner Ellen Reiben personally curates an eclectic collection made by artists from around the globe. 

    3319 Cady's Alley NW, Washington, District of Columbia, 20007, USA

    Shop Details

    Rate Includes: Closed Sun.
  • 13. Kramers

    Dupont Circle

    One of Washington's most legendary independent bookstores has a choice selection of fiction and nonfiction. It also hosts author talks, trivia nights, and comedy shows throughout the year. Kramers features a bar and a restaurant, which are open from morning until night.

    1517 Connecticut Ave. NW, Washington, District of Columbia, 20036, USA
  • 14. Miss Pixie's

    U Street

    The well-chosen collectibles—handpicked by Miss Pixie herself—include gorgeous textiles, antique home furnishings, lamps, mirrors, glass- and silverware, and artwork. The reasonable prices will grab your attention, as will the location, in an old car-dealer showroom.

    1626 14th St. NW, Washington, District of Columbia, 20001, USA
  • 15. National Archives Store and Gift Shop

    In a town full of museum shops, this store at the National Archives Museum stands out, with exclusive memorabilia, reproductions, apparel, books, gifts, and plenty of Founding Fathers' gear that let you own a piece of history. Authentic-looking copies of the Constitution and other historical documents are printed in Pennsylvania. The popular "red tape" paperweights are crafted in the United States with real red tape that once bound government documents: hence the phrase "cut through the red tape." Other popular products feature Rosie the Riveter and Stars and Stripes bags; Teddy in Hat items for young children; and apparel featuring Franklin, Hamilton, and other Founding Fathers. Throughout the store, interactive games associated with special exhibits provide entertaining insight on U.S. and even personal history: enter your last name into the computer to see how many Americans share your name and where in the country they live.

    Constitution Ave. NW between 7th and 9th Sts., Washington, District of Columbia, 20408, USA
  • 16. National Gallery of Art West Building Shop

    The Mall

    This expansive shop, one of four in the National Gallery, offers a vast series of books, paper goods, apparel, fine jewelry, and knickknacks that all relate to or reflect the museum's art collection. Prices range from little over a dollar for a pencil to well over $100 for designer jewelry. Some items were created by the museum; the rest are specially curated and sourced by museum buyers. Grab a Monet umbrella on a rainy day or some Andy Warhol pop-art crayons to pair with your favorite artist-themed coloring book. Here you can find whatever you need—and many things you didn't even realize you wanted.

    4th St. and Constitution Ave. NW, Washington, District of Columbia, 20565, USA
  • 17. Opportunity Shop of the Christ Child Society


    This gem of a consignment–thrift store has been a Georgetown landmark since 1954, with volunteers who have been with the store for more than 40 years. You'll find gorgeous fine jewelry, antiques, crystal, silver, and porcelain. Prices are moderate, and profits go to a good cause—the Christ Child Society provides for the needs of local children.

    1427 Wisconsin Ave. NW, Washington, District of Columbia, 20007, USA

    Shop Details

    Rate Includes: Closed Mon. and Tues.
  • 18. Politics and Prose

    Upper Northwest

    After being bought by two former Washington Post reporters in 2011, this legendary independent continues the tradition of jam-packed author events and signings. In the downstairs coffee shop and wine bar, The Den, you can debate the issues of the day or read a book while enjoying a casual meal or snack.

    5015 Connecticut Ave. NW, Washington, District of Columbia, 20008, USA
  • 19. Reddz Trading


    You can't miss the bright red storefront of this consignment shop, which sells clothing, accessories, jewelry, and shoes. Unlike traditional consignment stores, Reddz buys its merchandise for cash or trade so inventory is added regularly. It's not uncommon to find pieces with the price tags still attached.

    1413 Wisconsin Ave. NW, Washington, District of Columbia, 20007, USA
  • 20. Secondi

    Dupont Circle

    One of the city's finest consignment stores carries a well-chosen selection of women's designer and casual clothing, accessories, and shoes. Its airy and well-curated second-story space offers Isabel Marant, Louis Vuitton, Donna Karan, Prada, Chanel, and Marchesa labels.

    1702 Connecticut Ave. NW, Washington, District of Columbia, 20009, USA

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