BC Speed Shop Broken Cherry, the “rock-n-roll” boutique in Wicker Park, had a pretty large male clientele, so owner Remey Rozin recently decided to give them their own space. BC Speed Shop is located next door to Broken Cherry and maintains that rock vibe, but with a dash of motorcycle flair. Look for men’s clothing and accessories by lines such as Fred Perry, Ben Sherman, Johnson Motors, Dickies and more. As a shop employee tells us, “Now the guys don’t have to weed through women’s and children’s items to get to their stuff.”1734 W North Ave (773-278-4000). El: Blue to Damen. Bus: 50, 56, 72. Mon–Sat noon–7pm; Sun noon–5pm.
Benefit There’s more to this brand than cheeky, ’50s-inspired packaging. The most recent standalone location (find additional locations in Lincoln Park, Lakeview and Evanston) offers the full spread of beauty supplies plus a long list of services. Drop in or make an appointment for anything from a makeup lesson to bikini wax to the popular lash and brow tint. 1616 N Damen Ave (773-342-8860). El: Blue to Damen. Bus: 50, 56, 72. Mon–Wed 11am–7pm; Thu 11am–8pm; Fri 10am–7pm; Sat 10am–6pm; Sun 11am–6pm.
The Boring Store Don’t let the name fool you; this secret-agent supply store is anything but boring. Go undercover to stock up on espionage essentials such as cough silencers, pre-shredded documents and night-vision goggles, or step up to the moustache bar to find the perfect disguise. All proceeds from the Boring Store benefit 826CHI, a nonprofit writing and tutoring center. 1331 N Milwaukee Ave (773-772-8108). El: Blue to Division. Bus: 9, 56, 70. Mon–Thu noon–6pm; Fri, Sat 11am–5pm.
Greenheart Shop The selection at this eco-fair-trade nonprofit shop (oy, that’s a mouthful) runs the gamut from tops made by Nepalese women to soccer balls produced by Pakistani workers to organic cotton underwear made by Indian nuns. Shopping is only a fraction of the experience here; volunteer opportunities are numerous, along with educational events in the evening, such as fair-trade coffee tastings 1911 W Division St (312-264-1625). El: Blue to Division. Bus: 50, 70. Mon–Fri 11am–7pm; Sat 11am–6pm; Sun 11am–5pm.
Grow Every parent wants the best for baby, so buying organic is a logical step. But it doesn’t end with groceries. Deree Kobets has handpicked nursery furniture and organic kids’ attire with modern aesthetics in mind: from Kate Quinn’s kimono onesie and DwellStudio blossom-pattern crib blanket to Oeuf cribs that convert to toddler beds to complement the Eames-outfitted apartment. Don’t miss toys and books, like the I like Fruit board book, because it’s never too early to encourage healthy eating habits. 1943 W Division St (773-489-0009). Tue, Wed 11am–6pm; Thu 11am–7pm; Fri 11am–6pm; Sat 10am–6pm; Sun noon–5pm.
Kathryn Kerrigan Big feet and stylish shoes are often mutually exclusive, but Libertyville native and designer Kathryn Kerrigan made it her mission to fill that void. Now, about four years after launching her shoe business catering to “women who leave a larger imprint” with a flagship in her hometown ’burb, Kerrigan’s European-made shoes fill an entire Bucktown storefront. Owned by Stephanie Sack, who also runs across-the-street plus-size clothing store vive la femme, the eponymous boutique complements vive la femme’s collection of everyday styles. Think classic ballet flats, kitten heels and boots in sizes 9–13. 2031 N Damen Ave (773-235-7150). El: Blue to Damen. Bus: 50, 56, 72. Tue–Fri 11am–7pm; Sat, Sun 11am–5pm.
Paper and Print From Lotta Jansdotter to Moleskin to Chronicle Books, you can count on finding the design-lover’s usual suspects in cards and journals at this paper goods shop. Looking to break outside the box? Take advantage of the custom stationery service (mostly for weddings but available for party invites, too). Ride the DIY wave and pick up all your wrapping supplies while you’re there, too. 1940 N Damen Ave (773-384-1600). El: Blue to Damen. Bus: 50, 56, 72. Tue–Sat 11am–7pm; Sun 11am–5pm.
p.45 Ever since Marc Jacobs’s opening, retailers have flocked to this stretch of Damen; p.45 owner Tricia Tunstall was here before almost all of them, and the shop remains just as relevant as the newcomers. Check out long-lasting innovative casual and cocktail-appropriate attire for women by Phillip Lim 3.1, Chicago-based Abigail Glaum-Lathbury and Brochu Walker, and others, plus accessories by Winifred Grace and Sarah McGuire . 1643 N Damen Ave (773-862-4523). Mon–Sat 11am–7pm; Sun noon–5pm.
Reckless Records Reckless Records is a digger’s paradise, where music geeks can flip through thick stacks of booklets to find used and out-of-print discs. Though the fictional Championship Vinyl, from the film version of High Fidelity, bears a suspicious resemblance to Reckless, don’t expect elitist record-store employees. And it’s not all about records here (the shop also stocks DVDs), though Reckless has begun buying larger quantities of new albums. 1532 N Milwaukee Ave (773-235-3727). El: Blue to Damen. Bus: 50, 56, 72. Mon–Sat 10am–10pm; Sun 10am–8pm.
Threadless In addition to offering graphic T-shirts for grown-ups, this Wicker Park outpost lets the little ones in on the craze, too. Find racks stocked with mini versions of this popular company’s screenprinted merchandise that’s designed and then voted for online by the public. Just imagine how many hipster points your tot will earn wearing a shirt with a picture of a “xylosaurus” or a chocolate-chip cookie holding hands with a carton of milk. 1905 W Division St (773-698-7042). El: Blue to Damen. Bus: 50, 56, 72. Mon–Sat 10am–7pm; Sun 11am–5pm.
Trillium Riding on the preppy-girly concept, this Division Street resident carries all the usual suspects: Steven Alan, Cynthia Vincent, Vince and Joie. The shop offers a small selection for men, too: Alternative Apparel shirts, cardigan sweaters and denim. 1744 W Division St (773-698-8162). El: Blue to Division. Bus: 9, 70. Tue–Sat 11am–7pm; Sun noon–5pm .
Quimby’s You’re more likely to find the two printed copies of an obscure zine produced by a Chicago teen than Eat, Pray, Love at this local literary staple. In addition to novels (some best-sellers included), find an impressive selection of small press, underground and self-published magazines, plus comics, chap books and everything in between. Less of a reader, more of a listener? Check out the full list of readings and events, including a weekend-long zinefest. 1854 W North Ave (773-342-0910). El: Blue to Damen. Bus: 50, 56, 72. Mon–Thu noon–9pm; Fri noon–10pm; Sat 11am–10pm; Sun noon–6pm.