This field, thankfully, has been getting crowded tin the East Bay these past few years. Down at Lulu's still holds its own with its hard-core Eighties and rocker bent; Mars Mercantile gets props for size and longevity; Twisters and upstart Mercy Vintage excel at pretty, pretty dress-up fare. But right now, Pretty Penny stands alone. The space itself is lovely, and therefore a pleasure to spend time (and money) in; the staff is friendly and knowledgeable; the shoes and menswear are blissfully plentiful; and the Penny consistently boasts a perfect alchemy of stock (both vintage and locally sourced "firsthand") that practically guarantees that, if you come in looking for that one specific thing — dove-grey Oxfords, a summer dress with pockets, that certain shade of guayabera — you'll find it. Chalk it up to owner Sarah Dunbar's experience buying and selling at both Mars and Brooklyn vintage megastore Beacon's Closet, and her and her staff's eye for trends and quality. Oh, and the prices aren't bad, either.
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