A Pied

-Women's Shoes, Roscoe Village No Comments »

2037 W. Roscoe, (773)281-2210, apiedshoeboutique.com [ratings]
Goods: Shoes and accessories for women. Designers: Taryn by Taryn Rose, Frye, Jeffrey Campbell, Corso Como; bags by Joelle Nadine. Owner: Trudy Robinson Foley, owner of maternity boutique Kickin’, opened her shoe shop last spring because it was the only wardrobe essential her neighbors couldn’t find in Roscoe Village. Vibe: Mellow, bright, spacious and cozy. Antique Persian rugs and old trunks add vintage flavor to the exposed brick and hardwood floors, while a fireplace and the sonic sounds of Norah Jones keep it comfy. Price Range: Moderate-Expensive. The Look: A style-obsessed city gal who leaves the house at 7am and doesn’t return until 10pm. The shoes are chicly European in their aesthetic yet practical in their form, so you won’t be nursing blisters after your eight-block walk to the El. Shopper’s Perks: Originality all the way. Robinson Foley works with many smaller lines to carry exclusive colors or designs of certain shoes, and a few of the shop’s offerings are made exclusively for A Pied.

A Pied

UPDATED OCTOBER 2009

Open for Business: DNA 2050

*New Boutiques, *The Nationals No Comments »

Skinny. Boyfriend. Bootcut. Flare. With so many different styles of denim in today’s day and age, finding the perfect pair of jeans can be downright daunting. Throw in elements like wash and fit? The task becomes nearly impossible. Say hello to Lincoln Park’s latest, DNA 2050. Following on the heels of launches in both New York and Virginia, the boutique comes to Chicago specializing in premium denim and items that can be worn around it.

“When a customer comes in looking for a pair of jeans, we take a lot of time to figure out how the jeans fit and what the jeans are good for, like a bigger backside or a smaller waist or a petite person. We just help them find the perfect fit for their body,” assistant manager Kristin Wolfel says. “We have so many different types of jeans [that] it’s pretty easy.” And with tailoring services available at a minimal charge, the fit is practically guaranteed.

With an average price tag of about $300, the perfect pair may cost you a pretty penny, but Wolfel says the quality of the denim speaks for itself. “They’re gonna last for a really long time,” she says.

Look for brands like G-Star, Rich & Skinny, Bread & Butter, Justin Timberlake’s William Rast, Adam, Sport Max, Kooba purses and Frye shoes, some of which are rather obscure. “There’s obviously a lot of boutiques and a lot of competition, so we wanted to carry things that people haven’t seen,” Wolfel says.

Housing enough draping, flowing designs to make the entire cast of “The Hills” drool with envy, the women’s section could easily clothe and cater to the individual styles of Lauren, Audrina and Whitney. As for the men, selections go from funky coats and blazers to dress shirts to loungewear.

So far, DNA 2050 feels right at home in Lincoln Park. “We didn’t want to go downtown ‘cause it’s more touristy people,” Wolfel says. “Here is more of a fashion-conscious customer—they know what they’re looking for, and they know what they want to wear. I love Lincoln Park.” (Nicole Briese)

DNA 2050, 2122 N. Halsted, (773)525-8004

Belmont Army

-Mens Shoes, -Menswear, -Vintage, -Women's Shoes, -Womenswear, Lakeview, Wicker Park/Ukrainian Village No Comments »

855 W. Belmont, (773)549-1038; 1318 N. Milwaukee, (773)384-8448, belmontarmy.com [ratings]
Goods: New and vintage clothing and shoes for men and women. Designers: Ben Sherman, BB Dakota, Nice Collective, B. Son, Common Projects, Cheap Monday, Fiber & Fellow, Frye, Nike, Converse, Vans, Gravis, New Balance, Shades of Greige, Schmoove, Insight, Levi’s Capital E, Lifetime Collective. Owners: Chang Yoo, Tae Yoo, Tony Lee and Craig Scholla moved the legendary Belmont store over to the West Side when the Brown Line expansion forced the closing of the original location. They’ve reopened on Belmont as well, near the original spot. Vibe: The upstairs stock is completely new, while the vintage goods are in the basement. The clothing (yes, even the vintage) is neatly arranged and the staff is completely hands-off (unless you need them, of course), which makes for a totally no-pressure shopping experience. Price Range: Inexpensive-Expensive. The Look: Trendy hipster upstairs, thrift-store devotee downstairs. The person who shops on both floors has a personal style that is completely their own, and thrives on blending pieces to create a unique look. Shopper’s Perks: Massive amounts of both new and used clothing in one location. Perfect for fashionable friends with dueling shopping styles.

UPDATED OCTOBER 2009

Lakeview Store

Belmont Army

Wicker Park Store

Belmont Army

Havilah

-Womenswear, Near North No Comments »

869 N. Larrabee, (312)202-0012, shophavilah.com [ratings]
Goods: Clothing, accessories and a small selection of shoes for women. Designers: Dresses and tops by Madison Marcus, Black Halo, Yumi Kim, Amanda Uprichard, Zimmermann, Elizabeth & James, Rory Beca and Rebecca Taylor; shoes and boots by Frye and Dolce Vita; jewelry by Nicole Richie’s House of Harlow; and handbags by J.J. Winters. Owner: Rachel Kim fulfilled a life-long dream by opening the type of boutique where she’d like to shop. Vibe: The simple color scheme here—hot pink and black—coupled with elaborate chandeliers give the room a sophisticated feel while allowing the bright, colorful clothing to take your attention. Price Range: Moderate-Expensive. The Look: Forever 21 meets Neiman Marcus. Havilah stocks uber-feminine gear that ranges from trend-of-the-moment to classic pieces that will eternally live in your closet. Perfect for both the gal who can’t spend too much on a dress for Friday night and the one who is looking for a chic coat that will last for many winters to come. Shopper’s Perks: The consistent sale section here ensures you can nearly always score a discounted, must-have piece.

UPDATED OCTOBER 2009

Havilah

Alcala’s Western Wear

-Mens Shoes, -Menswear, -Women's Shoes, -Womenswear, Wicker Park/Ukrainian Village No Comments »

1733 W. Chicago, (312)226-0152, alcalas.com [ratings]
Goods: Boots, hats and Western garb for men, women and cowboys—and cowgirls-in-training. Designers: Boots are by Frye, Lucchese and Old Gringo; hats are by Stetson and Shady Brady. Owner: Luis Alcala founded the store in 1972. Luis’ son Richard and family now own it. Vibe: A lit-up, braying pony beckons shoppers to one of the largest retailers of Western wear this side of Texas. Inside, there’s a dizzying array of cowboy gear including everything from boots to lassos. Price Range: Moderate-Expensive. The Look: A beer-swigging, line-dancing, red-blooded American. Shopper’s Perks: The store offers free alterations and hat-shaping. They carry about eight thousand pair of boots.

UPDATED OCTOBER 2009

Alcala’s Western Wear

Lori’s Designer Shoes

-Women's Shoes, Lincoln Park No Comments »

824 W. Armitage, (773)281-5655, lorisshoes.com [ratings]
Goods: Women’s shoes and accessories. Designers: Boots by Frye, heels by Calvin Klein, an array from Jeffrey Campbell, flats by Sam Edelman; handbags by Pietro Alessandro, clutches by Hobo and jewelry from Gorjana. Owner: A self-confessed “shoe addict,” Lori Andre opened Lori’s Shoes in 1983. Her business policy: customers must leave as friends. Vibe: Open, spacious and stocked with more shoeboxes and sparkly accessories than Cinderella could dream of. The store is always bustling with shoppers and shoe-fueled energy. Price Range: Inexpensive-Expensive. The Look: With wedges, pumps and boots, Lori’s stocks a pair for a gal’s every mood. Shopper’s Perks: Lori takes biannual shopping trips to Europe, so she’s always ahead of the curve on trends. Check her Web site for detailed info on what’s kicking in the world of shoes—she even has a blog!

UPDATED OCTOBER 2009

Lori’s Designer Shoes


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