In an effort to support local businesses, especially those of our AAPI community, below is a growing list of Red Tricycle favorites that you can patronize, knowing that our community is better and stronger the more inclusive and diverse it is. Check out these Asian-owned businesses and shops below that offer the cutest gifts and decor finds for families in Los Angeles.
This Highland Park newcomer specializes in rare and exotic plants. Expect to find plants like Lachenalia viridiflora, Monstera siltepecana, and Philodendron Mamei. And if you don't know how to take care of these babies, don't worry, the staff is super knowledgeable and will make sure you know how to make your plant thrive.
Insider Tip: Follow them on Instagram for in-the-know plant drops, plant sale pop-ups, and other fun events.
Hours: Thurs.-Sun. 11 a.m.-5 p.m.
5440 York Blvd.
Art & Design for Every Day Life
This inventive shop showcases "design-conscious goods to cultivate a creative lifestyle" which sounds fancy but what it translates to are colorful, modern, and happy objects—from household items like mugs and candles all the way to hats and socks.
For kids, we can't get enough of the animal-shaped wooden plates or the reusable tiger zipper bags for snacks on-the-go. We dare you to visit and try to leave without a little something-something.
Hours: Little Tokyo DTLA location opens every day 11- 5 p.m.; ROWDTLA Fri.-Sun. noon-5 p.m.
374 E. 2nd St.
777 S. Alameda St. #174
Cool Kid Stuff
This iconic LA brick-and-mortar destination offers before-it-is-a-trend housewares, gifts, apparel, toys, and more along with a creative and innovative gallery space, called GR2 Gallery, a couple of doors down that showcases noteworthy art installations you won't find anywhere else.
Take the kids for the plush toys and comics but pick up some Giant Robot-made merch for yourself that will automatically move you to the cool parent column.
2015 Sawtelle Blvd.
Traditional Japanese Goods
When you support local businesses, you get a gift shop like this in return—located in DTLA since 1946–Bunkado is a treasure trove of fantastic finds like traditional Furoshiki cloth (a centuries-old practice of using a single piece of cloth for various uses like wrapping gifts or carrying items), Darumas, favorite Japanese children's books, stationery, and more.
Hours: Mon.-Thurs. 10 a.m.-6 p.m.; Fri.-Sun. 11 a.m.-7 p.m.
340 East 1st St.
This Long Beach bookstore (located inside The Hangout on Retro Row) offers a "curated selection of fiction, nonfiction, and children's books, organized around a theme of the month, in particular celebrating books by women and people of color."
In addition to the great selection, check their events page for storytimes, author readings, and workshops (once social-distance rules are relaxed) to engage and support the local community and economy.
Insider Tip: Need some help navigating your next book club pick? Check out their "Books Gone Mobile" —a concierge service that offers personalized advice, free local shipping on orders over $25, or $5 flat fee for media mail.
Hours: Tues.-Sun. 11 a.m.-7 p.m.
2122 E 4th St.
Cute Toys Galore
Consider this a warning—once you see all of the goods (toys, baby gear, clothing, accessories, furniture, and decor) this shop carries, it will be incredibly hard to shop anywhere else. Inspired during a trip to Paris where they had wandered into a toy store, the founders decided to set up a similar shop here in LA.
Merci Milo carries handmade unique toys and accessories for children from local artisans, traditional toy makers, creative mamas, and global brands which translates to walking around the store squealing, "OMG. THIS. IS. THE. CUTEST. THING. EVER."
Hours: In-person shopping is on hold at the moment due to COVID but online shopping and Instagram are available!
6017 Echo St.
San-So is derived from the word "oxygen" in Korean and this shop offers a breath of fresh air with exotic plants and handmade ceramic vessels all made in Los Angeles that look like they belong in an art gallery. While the shop is currently closed, they are offering delivery as well as the option for curbside pick-up Wed.-Fri. from 1-5 p.m.
Insider Tip: For the best chance at your very own object d'art, they restock the website every two weeks on Sat. at noon.
The Ultimate Market Pop-Up
If it wasn't for this founder's ingenuity, thousands of small businesses wouldn't have survived over the years. Unique Markets is the place to go for one-of-a-kind, unique only-in-LA finds and while it's been hard to bring people together to shop this past year, thankfully that's all about to change. The markets are returning so get ready to go big and shop your favorite small businesses. Follow the website for more details but the first one is expected to take place May 8th & 9th at ROW DTLA.
Treats & Sweets
Soft Serve Ice Cream
This made-from-scratch soft-serve ice cream has three locations (Tarzana, Silver Lake & Highland Park) to fulfill all your ice cream dessert needs and then some. The beauty of these dream creams? Interesting and creative flavors that will have you coming back for more. Pictured: Pistachio Baklava and German Chocolate Cake. Need we say more?
Check out the website for daily flavors (including a ton of vegan options). In addition to ordering gorgeous cones and pints, they also offer soft-serve pies (by the slice or the whole damn pie). Order ahead of time for easy pick-up via the website.
Hours: All locations, noon-10 p.m.
Coffee & Pretzels
Go for the coffee but stay for the pretzels. This West LA spot has developed a cult following and for good reason—the coffees are drip-tastic but it's not every cafe that you can get fresh, made-to-order gourmet pretzels. Order the sweet potato cheese pretzel for the kids—one review claimed it "changed her life," and order the red bean and cheese or the jalapeño and cheese pretzel for yourself. Oh and get a honey toast for the table.
Hours: Mon.-Fri. 8 a.m-6 p.m.; Sat.-Sun. 8 a.m.-5 p.m;
11309 Mississippi Ave
Ice Cream Fantasies Come True
Sticky rice and mango. Ube malted crunch. These are just some of the mouth-watering flavors that this ice cream shop carries inspired by far-flung destinations. Thankfully with six locations (Atwater Village, Fairfax, Venice, Tarzana, Pasadena, SmorgasburgDTLA), you won't have to travel that far to swing and land a cone that will transport you back to your favorite exotic vacation—no passport required. And with seasonal flavors rotating in regularly, there's always a new reason to travel back.
Hours: Open every day noon-11 p.m. except the Venice location which opens at 1:00 p.m.
ETSY Artists with an LA Pickup Location
Modern Macrame Wall Art
This Orange County-based macrame artist is wrapping, knotting, and hitching her way into our interior design dreams with her wall hangings. And for Disney fans, check out her hand-dyed Mickey-inspired wall hanging—talk about magical!
This small-batch handmade ceramicist based in Los Angeles nails that modern boho-vibe with her glazed mugs that feel like a hug in your hand. Each piece is uniquely beautiful—making it that much harder to decide which color and style to choose from.
feature image via iStock