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Best Shopping Experience: Sensational label loves a woman's curves 

Erica Tanov

There's something otherworldly about the way Erica Tanov's clothes feel in your hands on the racks of her airy Fourth Street showroom. Fingers tingle even in anticipation of touching intricately embroidered silk skirts and tops, stylish crocheted dresses, and perfectly tailored pinstripe trousers. It's clear that in Tanov's world, the way clothes feel and the way they make a wearer feel are intimately linked. The Piedmont native opened her first store on San Pablo Avenue a dozen years ago, and moved it to its current location in 1998. (She now has stores in New York and San Francisco, too.) Initially, the Parsons-trained designer focused on lingerie and home goods, but now her label is affixed to everything from sweaters to belts to bags to bedspreads. Her creations are feel-good for other reasons, too — everything is either produced in Bay Area factories or knit by hand by fairly paid workers in Bolivia. And here — dare we say best of all? — being a size two is not a prerequisite for looking good: Erica's is one line that loves a few curves.
(Sorry, no information is currently available for other years in this same award category.)

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