Quirky and colorful, Fremont ("The Center of the Universe," as natives refer to it) is a neighborhood that oozes playful eccentricity. From the towering statue of Lenin that looks upon its retail core to the zany Solstice Parade and Fremont Outdoor Cinema, Fremont is a place that infuses everything within it with art and a sense of humor. Its location on the Lake Washington Ship Canal, and the recent addition of the Adobe headquarters, have made Fremont prime real estate; however, the community members have worked hard to ensure that the neighborhood's funky boutiques and down-home ambience remain unchanged.

Nearby Wallingford, which bridges the gap between Fremont and the University District, takes from the best of both neighborhoods. Wallingford boasts whimsically colored bungalows, and a vibrant commercial district that includes a deco movie theater, fun shops (take the Erotic Bakery, for instance), and ethnic restaurants that serve everything from Afghani cuisine to sushi.

611 N. 35th St. | ph: (206) 633.5771
Enexile is a designer shop without the designer shop attitude. The casual, laid back attitude of the staff (and shop dog), belies the presence of the high dollar, big name brands that reside on the racks. In addition to clothes by BCBG, Anna Sui, Gasoline, and DKNY, Enexile also stocks furniture, framed art, and wares by local artists.
611 N. 36th St. | ph: (206) 547.1030
Enter into the bright colors and funky furniture of Frankie's interior and you know that this isn't any ordinary shoe store. Opened by the owner of Fremont's popular Burnt Sugar boutique, Frankie is a shoe store with sophistication and street smarts. Nightclub diva's and dapper professionals will be equally at home here.
Vandewater Books
1716 N 45th Avenue | ph: (206) 633.3040
Used books are in plentiful supply at this bookstore just a couple of blocks from Wallingford Center. The shop carries books of all genres, ranging in price from a few dollars to several hundred.
Dusty Strings
3406 Fremont Ave. N | ph: (206) 634.1662
Dusty Strings has been outfitting acoustic musicians from around the world since 1979. The 30-person workshop turns out beautiful harps and stunning hammered dulcimers, while the acoustic music shop sells banjos, guitars, mandolins, and a wonderful assortment of CDs, videos, and books. Dusty Strings also hosts workshop and concerts, and repairs damaged instruments.
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