Best of Boston

2003 Best Women's Clothing, Sophisticated

Tess & Carlos

No doubt the chic Cambridge salespeople at this refined boutique blanch a little every time they have to tell a prospective customer, “We’re just down the street from Urban Outfitters.” But it’s hard to feel sorry for them—they work among some of the most luxurious threads in the city, an impeccable rainbow of lacy Jil Sander skirts, silky Collette Dinnigan slipdresses, Piazza Sempione jackets, and racy Blumarine trousers. It’s all this-moment cool, but never arduously so, thanks to low-key charm, beautiful cuts, and clean, classic lines. Don’t ignore the small stuff: exquisite black headbands, Petite Bateau tanks, and gorgeous cashmere socks often make an appearance on one of the idiosyncratically placed tables.

20 Brattle St., Cambridge, 617-864-8377,