San Jose, CA
Happy Dragon is a hidden little gem. It's always got beautiful women's clothing and great children's books. A great place to find maternity and nursing wear, Hallowe'en costumes and greeting cards. Their men's clothing is less stellar but still well worth looking.
Prices can't be beat, and all profits go to the Eastfield Ming Quong Children's and Family Services, a very worthy cause. Typical prices are $1.50 for a knit blouse, $2.50 for a silk career blouse; $3 for a nice dress, $4 for a pair of blue jeans and $5 for a two-piece business suit. Children's books run from a dime to a dollar, rarely more. Nice board books, lift-the-flap books and hardback classic story books are to be found among the selection.
I've been shopping at Happy Dragon for years, and am never disappointed. It helps to know a couple of things before you go:
(1) bring cash, because that's the only form of payment they accept. $20 can buy you a whole new wardrobe.
(2) Google for parking in downtown Los Gatos because Happy Dragon is right on Main Street, and they have no parking of their own. Same is true for most shops in downtown Los Gatos. So go armed with parking maps.
(3) you'll have to pop in on your lunch hour or day off. Happy Dragon keeps old-fashioned banker's hours, 10am-4pm M-F No weekend or evening hours. Perhaps because they're staffed entirely by volunteers.
(4) Fridays tend to be busiest days because they hold half-off sales and other specials on Fridays. So visit M-Th to avoid any crowds or waiting, or go on Friday early to snag the best deals.
Go in the know and you'll be glad you did. Even when I go just to drop off a donation and have only a couple of dollars in cash, I always leave with some wonderful find.