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urbanXchange and Good Karma

What I blew my paycheck on this week

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Hippest un-boutique

Walking in the door of urbanXchange is like walking into the biggest clothing closet ever. If everything the store carried were my size, I’d be insta-broke. Hats, shoes, pants, sashes, skirts, shirts, wraps, coats, yup, just pull the truck up out front and start loading.

Since this is mere fantasy, let’s get to the reality of how awesome Julie Bennett’s store is. In addition to the usual new and used items, Bennett sells clothing and jewelry designs by local designers. Hot. She also sells stuff that is currently in mainstream stores, but at a discount. Uber Hot. Fat cork wedges from ZIGI girl have the most adorable peep toe and gathered chocolate leather, and they make me seven million feet tall. A pair of gold, opened toe goddess heels caught my eye. I grabbed up both pairs already dreaming up stocking, leggings and tights combinations.

Slide a few big, chunky wooden bracelets ($4) up your arm over a long sleeve shirt. Go ahead; try it. Surprisingly, it made me feel elegant and tough.

Is that possible?

The answer is definitely ‘yes’ when standing in Tacoma’s hippest un-boutique. Although the bracelets are varied colors of brown, there’s no rule that says you can’t wear them with anything or any color.

This shop isn’t just for the ladies either. There’s a whole section of guy stuff to cover guy parts.


[urbanXchange, 1934 Pacific Ave., Tacoma, 253.572.2280,]

Good Karma

Yay, Yay, Yay, winter is here. Proof is in the smell in the air, decorations going up ridiculously early, and in the open houses and shopping events going on. Fircrest’s Good Karma Boutique along with Jerika’s Antiques & Lamps on Regents Boulevard stayed open late Saturday, Oct. 13. In between stores, Poppy Seed Café (new favorite eatery — see cover story) acted as showroom for vendor tables, catering the shopping affair with double-yum finger foods.

Good Karma’s lovely owner, Michelle Baerg, was a delightful host and maintained her smile and good humor even when mobbed by people, myself included, waiting to pay while clutching sparkling necklaces made in Fircrest, shiny purses, hats, bangles made in University Place, and handbags in her very cozy shop.

A large silver leaf-shaped platter held dozens of rings of all styles. I tried on every single one settling on simple silver bands engraved with “truth” and “love” ($22 each) as well as a nickel-sized flower of crystal and silver ($14).

[Good Karma, 618 Regents Blvd., Fircrest, 253.564.4750]

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