Shadyside: Vintage Clothes, Pet Outfits and Amazing Sushi
Shadyside has multiple commercial districts (think Walnut Street and Highland Avenue), but Ellsworth Avenue has always been the quirky sibling of those thoroughfares.
Start by admiring the newly painted rainbow mural at the intersection of Maryland and Ellsworth avenues. The geometric, large-scale mural commemorates the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising in New York and honors the LGBTQIA+ community in Shadyside and across the city.
Leash up your pooch and head to the pet-friendly supply store Petagogy (5880 Ellsworth Ave., petagogy.com). The independently owned shop carries a selection of premium and natural pet foods and treats, plus super-cute dog coats in the winter. (Hey, even furry four-legged friends can get cold in Pittsburgh.) In the summer, look for the store’s annual summer pet vendor fair; come back in the winter months for pet photos with Santa.
Artistic Ellsworth is home to several antiques dealers and art galleries, including Mendelson Gallery (5874 Ellsworth Ave., facebook.com/MendelsonGallery) and GalleriE/Studio CHIZ (5831 Ellsworth Ave., galleriechiz.com). Adorned with a glittery camel on its exterior, Mendelson Gallery — owned by artist Steven Mendelson and open mostly by appointment — has been in business for more than 40 years. GalleriE Chiz, which for 22 years showcased an eclectic array of art and artists, was in 2017 converted into a personal studio and gallery for the artwork of owner Ellen Chisdes Neuberg.
Take a trip through style history by visiting Eons Fashion Antique (5850 Ellsworth Ave.) and Hey Betty! (5890 Ellsworth Ave., heybettyvintageclothing.com), Ellsworth’s fabulous vintage clothing stores. The carefully curated, vintage men’s and women’s clothing and accessories at both longtime establishments will blow your fashion mind.
Wear your one-of-a-kind, new-to-you duds to dinner at pan-Asian restaurant Soba (5847 Ellsworth Ave., soba.kitchen) — but first, head to the building’s third floor to enjoy sushi appetizers at Japanese restaurant Umi (5849 Ellsworth Ave., bigburrito.com/umi). Both eateries are owned by the big Burrito Restaurant Group, which also owns Shadyside stalwarts Mad Mex and Casbah (yes, you can walk to those South Highland Avenue joints, too).
Forget the modern world and relax for an hour at Pittsburgh Float (pittsburghfloat.com). Located inside Capristo Salon and Wellness Spa (5850 Ellsworth Ave., capristosalon.com), Pittsburgh Float offers sensory deprivation sessions where participants float in a warm, shallow pool of dense saltwater. The tank is light proof and soundproof — and cell phones are strictly off limits.
After reconnecting with your body, take a deep, cleansing breath and inhale the scent of … fresh laundry. The trendy (who even knew that was possible for a laundromat?) Laundry Factory (5859 Ellsworth Ave.) uses eco-friendly products.
Find something pretty at Madeleine George (5890 ½ Ellsworth Ave., madeleine-george.com). The women’s clothing boutique opened in Dec. 2017 and specializes in luxe but modern looks from hips brands at a variety of price points. If you’re going for a total makeover, head next door to Vanitybox Boutique (5892 Ellsworth Ave., vanityboxboutique.com) for a signature facial and makeup application. All products used at the boutique are paraben, sulfate and cruelty free.
Re-reading a good book can feel like greeting an old pal, which means used bookstore Shadyside Books (5900 Ellsworth Ave., shadysidebooks.com) may be one of the friendliest places in town. Located upstairs from the soon-to-launch Caboodle Trading Post, Shadyside Books — perfumed with that distinctive old book scent — carries more than 5,000 books in all fields, with specialties in history, arts and sciences.