Best of BoCoCa Boutiques
by Heather Liang and Christina Parrella, 10/15/2014
Mini Max Toys & Cuts. Photo: Alexander Thompson
The abundance of shopping options in BoCoCa is not just limited to adult selections, as the area provides a significant grouping of stores that cater to the younger set. The adorable duds at Picnic are the invention of owner Lindsey Engler, who spent many years working in Manhattan's Garment District and finally decided to open her own shop. Here, the clothing and the mind-set convey a sense of whimsy and a true celebration of "kids being kids." Runnin' Wild Toys is an adorable Carroll Gardens emporium that sells toys and games—both recreational and educational—for kids of all ages. While you're there, you can get your child's (or your own!) hair cut by resident stylist Margret. The store also hosts art and music classes. Another spot trying the toys-and-haircuts combo is Mini Max Toys & Cuts, opened by four moms in 2009 and specializing in eclectic, eco-friendly toys. The shop hosts weekly story times plus the occasional bonus session in French.
If your child is fascinated by board and card games, don't miss The Brooklyn Strategist, a haven for gamers. The venue stocks a number of popular board and strategy games, such as Scrabble, Dungeons and Dragons, chess and Risk, but it's much more than a place to browse, purchase and be on your way. The store bills itself as a community-based center, café and social club where those with a passion for board games and cards can gather to network, learn more, improve their skills and generally have a fun time playing together.
If you're hoping your kid will develop a fondness for reading, visit the mom-and-pop shop BookCourt. In business for more than three decades, this old-fashioned bookstore runs special kid-oriented events including regular readings, Q&As and book signings with well-known children's authors—excellent complements to its extensive selection of children's books. –HL