Best of Sacramento 2015: Shopping & Fashion writers' picks

Boring floor? Put a rug on it—with a little help from Mansour’s Oriental Rug Gallery.

Boring floor? Put a rug on it—with a little help from Mansour’s Oriental Rug Gallery.

Photo by Evan Duran

Best floor decor

Mansour’s Oriental Rug Gallery

Think of Mansour Yaghoubian not as a simple rug merchant, but as an Indiana Jones-style globe-trotter with very niche tastes. Yaghoubian has trekked to India, Pakistan, China, Iran, Turkey and other distant lands in search of the hand-woven textiles that make it back to his two showroom galleries in Sacramento and Roseville. What makes a high-quality Persian or Oriental rug, according to Mansour? Between 150 and 400 knots per square inch of fine wool, silk or cotton is his standard. But the third-generation fine-rug enthusiast also reads the fabric for signs of tradition. Seeing as Yaghoubian boasts more than 8,000 contemporary and antique rugs at his two stores—including some palace-sized pieces in various geometric shapes—it looks like that tradition lives on. 2550 Fair Oaks Boulevard, (916) 486-1221; 1113 Galleria Boulevard in Roseville, (916) 780-1080; S.R.

Best queer punk barber

Chavez d’Augustine

Getting one’s hair did can be an experience fraught with many emotions—whether you’re male, female or gender neutral. For most, hair is a profound visual extension of who we are as people, of how we want to be seen. Chavez d’Augustine, the self-proclaimed “Queer Punk Barber,” gets it. That’s because the Jimmy’s Barber Garage stylist—he’s also a musician and an LGBTQ activist—is a people person in the best sense. Caring and thoughtful, D’Augustine also exudes bona fide cheer and optimism. All qualities that go a long way when trying to find someone with whom to entrust those scissors and clippers. 1017 24th Street, (916) 662-7695, R.L.

Best Italian stereotype

R Douglas Custom Clothier

Have you heard the ethnic stereotype that all Italians are snazzy dressers? “They call it sprezzatura, or ’studied carelessness,’” says Ryan Douglas, head honcho at R Douglas, the debonair custom tailor shop in Midtown. “Looking sharp without trying. We can have you looking like you just got back from the Pitti Uomo.” But you don’t have to take his word. Just ask clients Vlade Divac, Chris Granger and UFC fighter T.J. Dillashaw, whose drastically different torsos have all been measured for suits. Even if you don’t go that route, there are other sartorial temptations to browse. “Italians always rock a pocket square,” Douglas says. Finally, a stereotype we can get behind. 1020 12th Street, Suite 112; (916) 438-9455; N.B.

Best multitasking brand


At 15 years young, it makes sense that the indie lifestyle brand known as Gearhead has tried on many identities. Record label. Music festival organizer. Clothing boutique. Magazine publisher. Now, after a five-year hiatus in which CEO Michelle Haunold parted ways with her co-owner and set roots in Elk Grove, Gearhead is re-embracing its rock ’n’ roll roots, albeit with typical multidisciplinary abandon. The company is back to releasing records by the likes of the White Barons and Lords of Altamont, and is once again slinging T-shirts, designed by local tattoo artist “Cuz’n” Bill Lorenz. On September 26, Haunold is reviving the company’s Gearfest music festival at Blue Lamp, which will also feature a hot rod car show, SPCA fundraiser and the premiere of something called the Ms. Gearhead contest. Because why do just one thing? RFH

Best worldly possessions

Zanzibar Trading Company

A mecca for handcrafted stone jewelry, tribal and folk art, silk yarns, African masks and textiles, and tons more. All original pieces displayed at the Midtown store are gathered from more than 110 countries. Much like its Zanzibar namesake, which was known for bringing cultures together in order to swap worldly goods, the eclectic little shop on the corner of 18th and L streets boasts a variety of unique gifts. Where else are you going to find South African Zulu baskets, sterling silver jewelry from India, rare African textiles like Kuba skirts, indigo and mud cloth, and Talavera pottery from Mexico all under one roof? 1731 L Street, (916) 443-5601, S.R.

Best South Sac store not in South Sac

Asian Food Center

Usually if we’re on the hunt for mega-cheap tofu, fresh fish and produce, and adorable tchotchkes, it requires a trip to South Sacramento. But if you’re short on time and closer to the central city, consider the Asian Food Center. This spacious corner store is stocked with towering shelves of noodles, canned goods, cookies and fresh produce, including the colorful “Red Hairy Fruit,” a member of the lychee family. Best of all, we love the supercute toys—So many cartoon pandas! So much Hello Kitty!—as well as the stacks of tissue-thin decorative paper and other pretty stationary treats. 1301 Broadway, (916) 448-4397. R.L.

Best page of antiquity

Craigslist Sacramento’s antiques page

Halcyon treasures combine with entertaining misspellings (and some generous estimates) when Sacramentans sell their old junk—pardon, antiques on Craigslist. Someone in Rocklin was selling a World War II-era replica Navy diving helmet—one of those copper and brass numbers that should be worn only by scuba-diving aliens—for $500. An antique baby buggy went for $845 in Elk Grove. And a Greenhaven seller priced a vintage “rot iron” patio set at $300. The curly spokes in the backs of the indigo chairs looked like they were breathed to life by Alice’s smoking caterpillar. If you’ve got the scratch, you can decorate your castle like an Ed Wood movie set. RFH