Best Shop to Get Bratty In

Hidden away in a Santa Monica side street across the road from an old graveyard stands a treasure-trove of funky fashion, trendy trinkets and laid-back vibes — the kind of shop that first made Melrose the epicenter of hip so many moons ago. No coincidence, the proprietress is Nancy Kaufman, the gal who ran the now-defunct punk shoe-and-clothing chain Na Na, the place to buy rockin’ gear for more than two decades in L.A. (located in Santa Monica and the aforementioned Melrose), and a definite precursor to galleria goth-gear emporiums like Hot Topic. Open since Na Na closed its doors six years ago, Kaufman’s Brat store offers a fun, cozy and decidedly cheaper alternative to the mall (and Melrose for that matter), with clothing, accessories and novelties from brands like Paul Frank, Smashing Grandpa and Dollhouse. It’s a one-stop shop for cute rockabilly dresses, sassy T-shirts, rock & roll baby gear (looove the tattoo-inspired baby tees and diaper bags from Rock Steady) and paper products ranging from Bad Girl stationery to Hello Kitty calendars. Kaufman’s regulars are called “Brats” (not to be confused with those scary Botox-lipped dolls, the Bratz), and she keeps the community cohesive and up-to-date via her highly informative newsletter, called The Bratmail, on which she lists the coolest events of the week and the perfect outfit from the store to wear there. And be sure, everything at Brat will make ya stand out in the pack.

Brat 1938 14th St., Santa Monica, ?(310) 452-2480

LA Weekly