Best Of 2019

The unmistakable scent of musty old books hits you like a brick wall the moment you set foot in Duttenhofer’s Books, and aesthetically, it’s like the personal library of a Mensa member with a hoarding problem. Tens of thousands of tomes, spanning nearly half a millennium, eclectically fill the space’s snuggly-fit shelves and spill over into various crates strewn about the floor. An impressive catalog of canonized classics, rare first editions and kooky finds — like 1961’s Let’s Have a Party: Gayer Parties with Paperware Decorations and Games — have made this used bookstore a destination for lovers of worn-out paperbacks and hardcovers with missing dust jackets for over 40 years. Amazon may have nearly wiped indie bookstores from public consciousness, but there’s still nothing like spending a lazy afternoon getting lost in a maze of coffee-stained, yellow-paged publications. Duttenhofer’s Books, 214 W. McMillan St., Clifton, duttenhofers.com.

Shops & Services


2. TriHealth Fitness & Health Pavilion

3. Tiny Needle Community Acupuncture

2. Wooden Nickel Antiques

3. Wild Things Antiques

Lynne & Lucille artist Kelli Fisher has been “making almost nothings into pretty somethings” since 2013. A transplant from Columbus, Ohio, Fisher specializes in jewelry crafted from the retired gear of local musicians. “I’ve always been a huge fan of music but have never been able to grasp the concept of actually playing it,” she says, “so making jewelry from recycled (and) unusable music materials and instruments is the way I have found to make my own version of music.” Check out her Etsy shop for necklaces and earrings made from shaped guitar strings and polished cymbal segments. She also utilizes hand-tooled leather and, occasionally, remains of the natural world: dig her popular rattlesnake vertebrae hoop earrings and African porcupine quill bar necklace. Lynne & Lucille, etsy.com/shop/lynneandlucille.

2. Cincinnati Art Museum

3. Silk Road Textiles

2. Michaels

3. Indigo Hippo

The fact that Continuum has held its own on Vine Street in OTR since 2015 is a prime example of the fact that Cincinnati is home to many humans who are interested in innovative, experimental and individual fashion. Shop owner Ericka Leighton is a graduate of the University of Cincinnati’s College of Design, Architecture, Art and Planning with a passion for embracing creativity and creating a space for others to explore their own, whether they’re makers or shoppers. Recently name-checked in Vogue, the shop’s entire vibe — from the neon pink logo to hanging plants and Vaporwave meets Art Nouveau eclecticism — meets the modern woman at the intersection of aspirational and attainable in style, silhouette and price point. Brands range from Paloma Wool and No 6 to Black Crane and Cold Picnic and run the gamut from boxy tops and 1980s jeans to cult mother apparel. Continuum also carries textiles, candles, jewelry, fragrances and artful publications to round out its lifestyle offerings. Continuum, 1407 Vine St., Over-the-Rhine, facebook.com/continuumbazaar.

2. Joseph Toyota of Cincinnati

3. Kings Toyota

2. Courtesy Automotive

3. Joseph Toyota of Cincinnati

2. Donovan’s Auto & Tire Center

3. AAA | Bob Sumerel Tire & Service