Soak up the small-town charm of this Birmingham suburb
Savvy Birmingham shoppers in search of the perfect gift head “over the mountain” to the cozy suburb of Homewood. Their destination? Eighteenth Street South, a wide, old-fashioned boulevard with an abundance of locally owned boutiques and restaurants. It’s a place where shopkeepers greet customers by name and sell hard-to-find gems, such as vintage barware and wood-pulp sheets. The avenue, which stretches less than a mile, has been attracting customers since the late 1920s, when leaders of the newly formed Homewood decided their town needed its own shopping district. Eighteenth Street South soon emerged as its main street—a role it continues to play nearly a century later. Finding the boulevard is easy: It’s just down the hill from Vulcan, the towering iron statue and symbol of Birmingham commanding the crest of Red Mountain. In other words, one local treasure helps guide the way to another.
Step inside this enchanting shop and enter a dream world of blossoms, candles, and clothing, almost all of it white (hence the store’s name). You won’t even find a scuff on the floor; it’s repainted every Saturday night. Leave your coffee outside before perusing the merchandise, which includes christening gowns, silk blouses, and botanical-themed shirts. whiteflowers.com