You won't find any national chains in downtown Lexington, so every purchase is a unique find. And yes, there is a painting of House Mountain in every other store. But really, why not? It's a gorgeous local landmark.
Boutiques, Galleries & Specialty Shops
Independently owned clothing stores sell a range of styles, from chic women's attire and preppy college duds to rugged outdoor apparel. Stores selling kitchenware and home décor celebrate the best of the South while gift stores give a nod to W&L and VMI with paintings and memorabilia beloved by students and alumni.
Artwork in downtown galleries has a local spin, with paintings of our mountains and country landscapes leading the charge. But art gets innovative, too. Found-art sculptures, unique pottery, and one-of-a-kind note cards pull in visitors for a closer look. Stop in Earth, Fire & Spirit Pottery for plenty of mixed media pieces, wooden bow ties, iron pieces, and of course, gorgeous pottery. And ladies, if you really love Lex, pop into Artists in Cahoots for cool earrings fashioned after downtown's patterned bricks.
Craving sweets? Stop by Cocoa Mill Chocolatier for truffles, chocolate bark, and chocolate-dipped fruits. The homemade Oreo ice cream at Sweet Things Ice Cream Shoppe is a county-wide favorite and the hand-rolled waffle cones have been a tradition for more than 30 years. Gelato wasn't created in Virginia, but they do it oh-so-right at Pronto Caffe & Gelateria.
Other downtown shops spotlight artisanal cheeses, board games and puzzles, locally ground coffee, Celtic goods, and whimsical treasures.
Antique & Vintage Shops
A dozen or so antique stores are scattered across Rockbridge County, with several clustered in downtown Lexington, Fairfield, and Buena Vista. What treasures will you find? Glassware, vintage lighting, Civil War memorabilia and 17th and 18th century furniture are readily at hand. And plenty of kitschy keepsakes are for sale too.
For one stop-shopping, head to Route 11 where you can check out antiques from more than 200 dealers and consigners at Duke's Lexington Antique Center.
To find something beautiful and treasured while shopping downtown Lexington, stop into Yesterday Once More. Their owners also specialize in furniture refinishing. Mid-century modern vintage is making a comeback, and one of Lexington's newest shops - Curated Interiors - has an incredible array of furnishings and decor you won't want to miss.
Don't skip a stop at 3 Seasons Antiques & Unique Treasures in Fairfield. They spend a great deal of time collecting vintage pieces and authentic, treasured antiques.
If you see a country store while driving the county's back roads, pull over. There's no guarantee what you'll discover, but that's part of the fun. Possible finds include nostalgic candy, local jams and jellies, beef jerky, hoop cheese, deli sandwiches, and maybe, if you're lucky, live fish bait sitting beside the Cheerwine in the cooler.
Perhaps country stores are your mission. If so, seek out Layne's, Natural Bridge General Store, or Gertie's!