Dear hearts, having just returned from Scandic shores, let me urge you to be Stockholm bound with all haste. Fresh as a daisy, clean as a whistle, cool as a cucumber and sweet as a nut, it's the city with edge and charm in spades.
So let's get going. SoFo (South of Folkungagatan) is the vintage and fashion G-spot, so plan your wardrobe accordingly; you'll need to look sharp but with easy access, as you're going to be down to your underwear repeatedly. And that means guys, too.
Start with a massive joe blast at Barista Fair Trade Coffee (00 46 7 3631 1427; barista.cc) at No 67 Gotgatan. Then exit right and head up Asogatan to find on your right Sneakersnstuff (00 46 8 743 0322; sneakersnstuff.com) at No 124, the last word for funked-up foot candy and trainers. Really, you could leave hubby here for the rest of his life and not worry. Beyond Retro (00 46 8 55 91 36 45; beyondretro.com) at No 144, with its huge selection of thrift store-ish clothes and shoes may bode "bring and buy" – but dig deep, there are some smashing vintage pieces amongst the tat and twaddle.
From here continue right on Asogatan where at No 36, on the corner with Nytorgsgatan, is Acne (00 46 8 640 04 70; acnestudios.com) the iconic Swedish men's and womenswear brand that has taken the world by storm and made a virtue of a skin malady.
Exit Acne, head down Nytorgsgatan and take a left on to Bondegatan to find Fifth Avenue Shoe Repair (00 46 8 214 808; shoerepair.se) at No 46b who neither repair shoes nor are on Fifth Avenue, but do manage a svelte and natty line in avant-garde yet commercial Swedish clothing. Tjallamalla (00 46 8 640 7847; tjallamalla.com) also at No 46, carries around 200 brands for guys and gals, from Rodebjer to Carin Wester and Ida Sjostedt; while next door at No 48 Matilda Wendelboe (00 46 8 21 33 22; matildawendelboe.com) has a nice line in geometric girl shapes, just perfect if you've been at the cinnamon buns.
Next door again, but still at No 48, Repris (00 46 8 640 2548; repris-stockholm.se) offers vintage, thrift, accessories and a myriad of dust-gatherers guaranteed to annoy the old ball and chain. For more vintage gal-threads and hats, zap next door to Time Out (00 46 8 644 6355) and finally be sure to call at Lisa Larsson (00 46 8 643 61 53; lisalarssonsecondhand.com). Regarded as one of Sweden's best vintage stashes, it's not exactly up there with Didier Ludot, but nonetheless, this little store packs a panache-filled punch for fashmaniacs, with its swellegant, constantly changing archive of 1930s-1970s men's and women's pieces. Don't miss it.
Five pixie skips further on the right, Sara Clausin (00 46 8 642 33 23; saraclausin.com) peddles a fem selection of international and Scandi designer collections, ranging from DvF and Michael Kors to Citizens of Humanity and Heartmade, plus perfume and accessories.
Up to the end you go, turn right on to Renstiernas Gata and then totter along the next right on to Skanegatan. You'll pass several small cafés and interiors shops on your right as well as little Nytorget park on your left, overlooking which on the corner is delish joint Nytorget Urban Deli at No 4 (00 46 8 599 091 80; urbandeli.org). Night and day there's a real buzz to this little block, especially Saturday brunch. So even if you don't worship the god of retail you can still ta en fika the ultra-important Swedish cult of coffee, chat, coffee, cinnamon buns, coffee and people-watching with extra chat and coffee.
OK, the fat lady hasn't sung yet, so cross Skanegatan for Nudie Jeans (00 46 8 410 972 00; nudiejeans.com) at No 75, the flagship store of the chronically fashionable Swedish denim designer brand. No jean, no scene, sugar. Having dutifully bought your triple-washed organic crop-cut with hand-harvested Japanese cotton, dry clean-only organic indigo, and optional Valextra wallet pouch, press on, crossing Sodermannagatan for the latest rival to iconic Acne in the form of the even edgier The Local Firm (00 46 641 55 06; thelocalfirm.com) at No 82.
Alright, let's face it, if you don't have it now, you never will. Time for the all-important bag count – and didn't you do well, snygging! TTFN!
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