Pasadena Originals

Unique & Independent Shops

November 22, 2022 | Posted in Things To Do

Pasadena's small businesses are what make it a unique destination for thrifters, designers, and every-day shoppers. With so many independent stores sprinkled throughout the city, you can easily find one-of-a-kind items for friends, family and even something special for yourself.

April blooms

14 E Bellevue Dr
Pasadena, CA 91105

Shopping at April Blooms will make you look good, but it will also make you feel good. April Blooms strives to empower women to thrive and stand together. 2% of every purchase gets donated to A21, an organization that advocates for and free victims of human trafficking. Shop here and know that you're benefiting the community, and your closet is so many ways.


100 N Fair Oaks Ave
Pasadena, CA 91103

Homage has a little bit for everyone. It's almost guaranteed that you will find something that catches your eye, and probably so much more. Their carefully curated collection of goods includes jewelry, gifts, personal care and accessories, books and stationery, and more. They even have a section dedicated to social activism.

Gold Bug

38 E Holly St
Pasadena, CA 91103

Gold Bug is a treasure trove of creative taxidermy, unique handmade jewelry and exceptional art pieces. A mash-up of Edgar Allan Poe (whose short story of the same name provides the store's moniker) and whimsical antics from Alice in Wonderland, Gold Bug is definitely the place to find a gift for that friend who has everything.

The Dog Bakery

36 W. Colorado Blvd.
Pasadena, CA 91105

Spoil your furbaby with a special treat from The Dog Bakery. Tucked down lively Mills Alley, just off the epicenter of Old Pasadena, this charming bake shop specializes in providing your pooch with the same cheat-day luxuries that you enjoy. Did little Bandit just graduate from obedience school? There's a donut for that. Coco is finally house-trained? Well, she's earned herself that Barkin' Brownie. And when Lula turns five? Yes – they bake doggy birthday cakes too!

Vroman's Bookstore

695 E. Colorado Blvd.
Pasadena, CA 91101

Bookworms adore the Vroman's Bookstore. Not just a Pasadena institution, but rightfully a Southern California landmark, Vroman's was founded in 1894, making it So Cal's oldest and largest independent bookstore. Vroman's has everything you could want from a bookstore: a sprawling art, design and architecture section; a well-curated employee-picks wall; large stationery, card & gift sections; a newsstand stocked with even the most obscure of periodicals; and a café run by Tepito Coffee.

Upstairs, there's an event space and an inviting children's section, complete with a kids' play space and a knowledgeable, passionate staff. Don't forget to stop by The 1894, an all-new wine bar with literature-inspired cocktails, craft beer, wine and eye-pleasing charcuterie boards.

Bricks & Minifigs

350 S. Lake Ave Ste. 110
Pasadena, CA 91101

Bricks & Minifigs has all your needs to sell, trade, or buy new and old LEGO collections. Located inside the historic Colonnade building on South Lake Avenue, you'll find rare Star Wars Legos, your favorite Super Heros, Disney characters, and more. A fun experience for the whole family.