It's hot outside, but Houstonians know where the air is always a predictable 68 degrees. Yup, it's the mall, or wherever you prefer to find a collection of consumer goods for sale. Whether or not you're ready to plan your fall wardrobe, these are the stores and events you'll want to check out before Labor Day.
Christina Mitchell has owned one of the coolest local boutiques in town for nearly 20 years, and this month she's moving it to new digs. Starting in mid-August, Abejas' collection of boho-chic neutrals and globally inspired accessories is moving to the mid-century building at 2517 South Blvd., a 3,000-square-foot industrial-glam space that's being conceived by top interior designer Barbara Hill. We can't wait to see and shop it. Update: Abejas reps say the new space is now scheduled to debut in September, so we'll have to wait a little longer.
One of the first permanent shops to open in the new Washington Avenue Arts District, Unbridaled bills itself as "the cure for the uncommon bride." Like owner Kelsey Tuben's original shop in Austin, it features romantic, bohemian and fashion-forward dresses by Claire Pettibone, Rue de Seine, Tara La Tour and more—you can catch the shop's first trunk show by Katie May through Aug. 13.
Maybe it's just because it has kept us waiting for so long, but we're celebrating the debut of Akris in River Oaks District, which opened its doors at the beginning of August, giving Houston's power players access to the Swiss brand's luxurious workwear. It arrives with an exclusive Ai horsehair messenger bag in burgundy ($2,990) designed just for the occasion. Other stores that have launched in the District since last we checked: Alice + Olivia, NARS, and Jo Malone, with more to come in September.
4. Houstonia Summer Shopping Soiree
Whether you're looking for warm-weather bargains or planning out your fall look, you'll find the best of both worlds at this shopping pop-up event on Aug. 27 with 50 of our favorite local stores and brands, plus a vintage lounge from Georgia Brown Home, food trucks, custom cocktails and a photo booth.
File this boutique discovery under "better late than never." A new addition this summer to Blvd Place, owner Terin Matlock stocks Luxington with fun, flirty fashions at a friendly price point. Count us in for houndstooth rompers, watercolor prints by Aussie brand Elliatt, party dresses by StyleStalker and other cute outfits and accessories.
6. King Ranch Saddle Shop
We're all about Houston's emerging cosmopolitan image, but y'all, there's also something to be said for embracing your inner Texan. The King Ranch Saddle Shop started making sturdy yet beautiful saddles after the Civil War, and has expanded its tradition of craftsmanship into home furnishings, luggage, furniture, clothing and cowboy boots. Opening in the River Oaks Shopping Center this month, it will be the first brick and mortar store outside of the brand's flagship in Kingsville.