Eat, Do, Shop, Play and Learn
A restaurant that specializes in peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. Dance classes for toddlers and parents. A lending library for educational toys. Storytime at a nearly 90-year-old bookshop. A civic institution sailing the three rivers. In and around Pittsburgh, the offerings for families looking for food, fun and more go so much deeper than the expected family outings. From places to outfit and entertain to natural wonders and city treasures, here are some of our favorites.
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photo by laura petrilla
You may have noticed: Kids need stuff. Clothes, toys, furniture and more — and they do have a tendency to keep growing, requiring new and different stuff year after year. Here are the places that’ll make your kids’ rooms, closets and toy boxes far more interesting than the neighbors’. –– JS
All About Kids Furniture
Looking for a bed that resembles a princess’ castle or maybe a bunk bed with a slide? All About Kids Furniture has you covered. From newborns to teens and everything in between, the family-owned furniture store specializes in cribs, gliders, beds for big kids, plus bunks and fun loft beds.
1420 Washington Road, Washington
Barefoot Stitches & Gifts
Besides purses, jewelry and other decor items, Barefoot Stitches & Gifts is packed with a plethora of adorable outfits and gifts for baby, including items that may be monogrammed or engraved.
313 Beverly Road, Mount Lebanon
The ultra-hip “lifestyle” boutique (pictured) for babies and their parents offers a carefully curated selection of baby gear, maternity and postpartum essentials, organic clothing, accessories and more. They also have an extensive book collection, plus a nursing nook and play area for kids.
3609 Butler St., Lawrenceville
Castle Toys and Games
With the aim to be “the best toy store in the world,” Castle Toys and Games has something for everyone. The family-owned emporium stocks toys and games that appeal to the adventurous wild child, the sports enthusiast and kids with extra needs. There’s also a wide selection of arts and crafts items.
Wexford and Beaver
You might be surprised to find the upscale gift shop, which sells fine china, home decor and collectibles, also has a wide selection of items for babies and kids that ranges from photo frames and lunchboxes to blankets and swaddles.
Locations in East Liberty and Allison Park
The Flying Squirrel
Opened in 2015, the charming Flying Squirrel — which conjures up fun just by saying its name — hits the trifecta by selling vintage toys, ice cream and ice cream sandwiches (from local favorites the Pittsburgh Ice Cream Co. and Leona’s) and penny candy.
241 E. Main St., Carnegie
The Frog N Princess
Your little prince or princess will rule the fashion world in their duds from The Frog N Princess. The boutique features cutting-edge fashions — including designs from Appaman and Haute Baby — for infants, toddlers and tweens and also carries special attire for christenings, communions, bat mitzvahs and weddings.
3202 Washington Road, McMurray
Fun Buy the Pound Toy Store
Fun Buy the Pound opened a decade ago with the idea that kids could come in and build with LEGO or K’Nex and buy their creation by the weight. The store still offers that concept, but it has grown to include a number of baby and toy brands as well. There’s also a play area for kids available for $1.50 for 30 minutes or $2.75 for an hour.
406 Beaver St., Sewickley
GoodNight Baby & Kids (CLOSED)
Formerly USA Baby to Teen, Goodnight Baby & Kids is much more than a nursery-and-kids furniture store. The locally owned business and showroom also carries strollers, car seats, bedding decor and many other baby essentials, including cradle swings, playards and bassinets.
2257 Babcock Blvd., Ross Township
Happy Baby Company
The home of the Green Cheeks Diaper Service — which offers organic cloth diaper delivery, cleaning and pick up in the greater Pittsburgh area — Happy Baby Company specializes in natural parenting products, baby wearing, bath essentials and, of course, all manner of cloth diapers and accessories.
558 Lincoln Ave., Bellevue
Kidz and Company
For burgeoning fashionistas, Kidz and Company is a must. The fashion-forward boutique, which carries clothing for babies all the way through the tween years, specializes in designer clothing for boys and girls, including trendy brands such as Mayoral and Deux Par Deux.
5871 Forbes Ave., Squirrel Hill
The Little Orange Store at the Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh
Take the experience of visiting the Children’s Museum home with you via The Little Orange Store. The museum’s shop carries educational and fun items such as water-soluble face painting crayons, “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood” puppets, maker kits and more. And yes, you can shop in the store without paying the museum admission fee.
10 Children’s Way, North Side
Moms can shop for themselves and their littles at Lullabye Landing, which shares a space with Lula Boutique, a hip women’s clothing store. Specializing in trendy duds for boys and girls from newborn to tweenager, Lullabye Landing also carries hard-to-find first-communion dresses.
1746 North Highland Road, Bethel Park
photo by chuck beard
A fixture in Sewickley since 1929, the independent bookseller is known for its author meet-and-greets, book clubs and storytimes for children. The bookshop also periodically hosts a Young Writers Series aimed at teens and middle-schoolers.
417 Beaver St., Sewickley
The Picket Fence
Be the star of the baby shower by bringing a gift from The Picket Fence. The Shadyside boutique carries an array of stylish baby, children’s and women’s apparel and accessories, plus home decor, toys and other gifts.
5425 Walnut St., Shadyside
Precious + Posh
Blending classic with fresh style, Precious + Posh sells modern baby and children’s clothing, including many products and lines not typically found in the Pittsburgh area. Besides cute and casual everyday clothing, the boutique has an extensive collection of communion, christening and formal wear.
638 Allegheny River Blvd., Oakmont
In addition to handmade jewelry and accessories for a variety of ages, this shop and gathering place offers creative, themed kids parties along such themes as “Harry Potter” and “Alice in Wonderland,” after which guests will leave with creations of their own.
4316 Penn Ave., Lawrenceville
S.W. Randall Toyes and Giftes
Take a trip back in time with S.W. Randall. Some of the classic toys carried at the whimsical stores — including wooden toys, wagons and rocking horses — are the sort of eternally popular items S.W. Randall owner Jack Cohen sold when he opened his original toy store more than 45 years ago.
Locations in Squirrel Hill, Shadyside and Downtown
Find lovely jewelry, gifts and cards for your little ones in the charming Victorian Manner. The boutique also carries sweet accessories, décor and unique baby outfits.
693 Washington Road, Mt. Lebanon
Wildcard’s focus on local and independent makers carries over to the baby section, where customers can find the popular Lil Pierogi onesies and T-shirts, plus an eclectic array of cool kid items you won’t see in any of the big box stores.
4209 Butler St., Lawrenceville