What’s in Store: Kids’ Stuff

No need to fight the crowds at the big-box stores: From pullovers to puzzles, these local shops have the perfect presents for the little ones on your list.

The well-stocked shelves at Tiny Hanger. / Photograph by Lizzy Barrett

FOR CLOTHING
Tiny Hanger

314 Harvard St., Brookline, 617-487-5501, tinyhanger.com.

When it comes to describing Tiny Hanger, we have just two words for you: cuteness overload. Open since 2011, the charming Coolidge Corner shop—outfitted with cheerful periwinkle walls—carries all manner of kids’ clothing and accessories, from school-ready dresses dotted with tiny red hearts to soft and stretchy cotton corduroys in mustard yellow. Bonus points for locally made pieces.

Must-Buy: Deux Par Deux “Bear” cotton-blend long-sleeve tee, $24.

FOR SHOES
Morgan & Milo

46 Waltham St., Boston, 617-422-0121, morganandmilo.com.

Sold in stores all over the country but designed right here in the South End, Morgan & Milo’s line of kids’ kicks hits all the right notes: stylish enough to satisfy even the most discerning parents, but comfy enough to keep youngsters on their feet through playground romps and trips to the aquarium. Hook your wee ones up with the brand’s sparkly fur-lined boots, colorful Mary Janes, or sporty slip-ons—all so chic, you may find yourself wishing they came in your size.

Must-Buy: “Mix It Up Triple V” sneakers, $44.

Morgan & Milo’s ultra-cool kids’ high tops. / Jorg Meyer Photography

FOR TOYS
Tadpole

58 Clarendon St., Boston, 617-778-1788, shoptadpole.com.

Catering to children as old as 10, the Tadpole team thinks outside the Xbox to curate a traditional (read: screenless) selection of toys you’ll feel good about giving your tykes: Jellycat stuffed animals, sustainably made Green Toys trucks, and classic Lego sets are just a few of the many parent-approved playthings you’ll find here.

Must-Buy: Tegu “Magbot” magnetic wooden blocks, $30.

The wooden “Magbot” at Tadpole. / Courtesy photo

FOR BOOKS
Porter Square Books

25 White St., Cambridge, 617-491-2220, portersquarebooks.com.

Budding bookworms fit right in at this colorful literary haven, where an expansive kids’ section—complete with tot-size wooden chairs and framed Eric Carle artwork—boasts ample picture and board books, graphic novels, and story anthologies. The Cambridge shop hosts activities for young bibliophiles, too, including weekly preschooler story hours led by professional raconteur Doria Hughes.

Must-Buy: On a Magical Do-Nothing Day, by Beatrice Alemagna, $14.39.

FOR GAMES
Magpie Kids

95 Elm St., Somerville, 617-764-4110, magpiekids.com.

The child-centric sibling of the original Davis Square accessory store, Magpie Kids draws in pintsize customers with a tempting array of glow-in-the-dark puzzles, animal-themed wooden croquet sets, birch chess and checker boards, and other distinctive games. Indie artists create much of what you’ll find on the boutique’s lime-green pedestal tables and crisp white shelves, so you’re practically guaranteed to discover something entirely unique.

Must-Buy: “Animal Match” memory game with handpainted cardboard tiles, $28.