Beyond its many charming walk-ups, golden retrievers and strollers, Lincoln Park is also known for its soulless big-box chain stores. (Let's be real, though: Trips to the Container Store and REI are kind of awesome.) But the Lincoln Park shopping scene has plenty of high-end indie stores to blow your budget on, too, plus a surprising number of bargain shops. Get your fill of shoe stores, chic handbags, bike shops and discount clothes in Lincoln Park.
RECOMMENDED: Our complete guide to the Lincoln Park neighborhood
The best shops in Lincoln Park
It’s not surprising that this two-room hot spot has thrived in the finicky Lincoln Park neighborhood for more than 20 years. Bath and body products, vases, funky wine glass sets and tons of other presents for brides-to-be, moms-to-be and the hostess-who-has-everything can be found in the front room. On the racks in the back are Three Dots shirts ($40–$80) and Babette skirts and jackets ($100–$500), plus Me and Ro jewelry ($76–$345).
Set foot in the well-loved hipster frame store and you’ll find design elements that reflect the history and culture of the Lincoln Park neighborhood, including chevron wood floors, a photo booth and plenty of books sourced from local authors (which are also available for purchase). Don’t leave without picking up a free custom map of the best spots to sit and read a book around the ’hood, designed by local artist Jason Polan. Of course, you’ll also find the selection of affordable, fashion-conscious frames you've come to expect from Warby Parker.
While you can count on finding your pharmacy basics (Tylenol, Band-Aids and the like) at this Lincoln Park apothecary, it’s not the shop’s bread and butter. Instead, the 2,000-square-foot storefront, opened by a former Parkway Drugs pharmacist, features everything from herbals and homeopathic supplements to MALIN + GOETZ cosmetics, plus shampoos, conditioners, styling tonics, fragrances for men and women, as well as a fully functioning pharmacy. You’ll even find hand-knitted dog sweaters among the mix, just so no one feels left out.
Founded in 1973, Cycle Smithy began as a refurbished bicycle rental shop before transitioning into sales. Today, the shop supplies bikes to customers in Lincoln Park in addition to housing a collection of more than 50 vintage bicycles, some of which date back to the 1890s. Shop owner and bicycle historian Mark Mattei curates the two-wheeled rides on display, allowing visitors to see key evolutionary points in bicycle design throughout history.
On a crowded, zig-zaggy stretch of Clark, a seven-inch record with a piece of paper taped across it hangs in the front window of this shop. It makes owner Dave Crain’s position quite clear. It reads: “NO CD’S NEVER HAD ’EM!!! NEVER WILL!!!” Lest you think this is some modern vinyl revival, keep in mind Dave has been selling wax here for years and years. It’s a charming, friendly shop run by an omniverous music addict. New releases from Tame Impala, EDM 12-inches, used jazz, Lady Gaga, rare garage and so much more sit in stacks from floor to ceiling.
Located in a Lincoln Park brownstone, this charming shop offers a sophisticated and stylish collection of gifts and stationery, but is best known as the go-to spot for discerning brides looking for custom invites. The store also has an eclectic jewelry selection from local artists and other great gifts. Find the perfect present for a hostess, new baby or something special for yourself. Even better? The store gift-wraps.
It’s beauty crunch time and you need to banish and conceal blackheads in one shot. Head to bluemercury, a combination spa and apothecary with outposts in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Washington, D.C. Clean pores with a refining Power Facial ($220), then browse the collection of more than 50 domestic and imported skin-care and cosmetic lines. Brow styling, waxing and makeup application are also available.
This Raleigh, South Carolina–based women’s boutique offers trendy, feminine designs at everyday prices. Shoppers can expect to find popular clothing brands like Show Me Your Mumu, BB Dakota, Free People and French Connection. Plus, accessories and shoes from Sam Edelman, House of Harlow, Kendra Scott and Dolce Vita. Whether you’re shopping for stylish basics or a special event, you should have no problem at this shop.
Fox’s is the ultimate treasure hunt—one never knows what they’ll find each time they set foot in the Lincoln Park store. While the shop stocks everything in the name of women’s wear, it carries particularly great investment pieces–leather handbags, coats or fur. Prices will give you only the best kind of sticker shock, which offsets the dressing room experience, akin to that of a girls’ locker room. (No curtains or doors here!) All in all, a must-do for any bargain lover.
Get ready for a dose of decorating delight. Inside this vintage building are unique furniture and accessories worthy of inspiring an entire room: Driftwood sculptures ($135–$1,500), silver plated pitchers and trays with horn handles ($100–$750), zebra rugs ($800) and even cocktail tables mounted on tree trunks ($750–$1200). The garden section carries fresh plants and flowers year-round, plus beautiful pots and planters.