Chicago has its malls and major department stores, as well as its designer boutiques, but where can you go to find a unique gift for a loved one this season?
Chicago is filled with places to shop. Magnificent Mile is renowned for its shopping options, with some of the best retail brands in the world all in one easy spot. However, move beyond the items you could find in any city and look for something truly unique and one-of-a-kind for your recipient (or yourself!). These six spots are the perfect places to browse for a gift that will leave a lasting impression.
The Inkling Shop
Nearing a decade in business, The Inkling Shop sells an array of curiosities and quirky gifts. Each product in the store is picked for its design, beauty and purpose. Browse through the apothecary section or the print rack and wall, alongside endless arrays of houseware, jewelry, stationery and more.
2917 1/2 North Broadway
Foursided has several locations around Chicago, but the Andersonville location on North Clark is the largest, if not the first. While the store’s focus is art and products from artisans, you can also find carefully curated gifts, vintage items and ephemera. There are Foursided exclusives as well, so you really know that whatever gift you pick, you never have to worry about someone else getting it for the same person. You can find special holiday items through the end of December, from candles and greeting cards to cocktail napkins and vintage postcard sets.
5061 North Clark
Enjoy, An Urban General Store
Enjoy, An Urban General Store sits in a European-style plaza and is the perfect stop to drop in and browse a bit after enjoying a meal at a nearby restaurant. The store boasts a continuously changing array of gifts, candy and novelty items, including humorous items, and there are more than 10,000 items to choose from among the store’s selection. Find home and office decor, cards and books, baby and child items, jewelry, accessories and more. Better yet, if you see something in store and you don’t jump on the chance to get it then, you can search through the store’s extensive website to find the same thing or something similar once you get back home, and have it delivered straight to your door.
4723 North Lincoln Avenue
This very popular annual Christmas market provides a German-style experience wherein locals and travelers to Chicago alike converge to shop, drink hot mulled wine and munch on Bavarian snacks. If you visit the market during the daytime, rather than at night when it’s quite crowded, you’ll find you can easily shop for beautiful Christmas decor, ornaments, carved items and other handcrafts that make a lovely, thoughtful gift for just about anyone.
Daley Plaza, 50 West Washington
P.O.S.H. offers all things antique and vintage, sourced from auction houses and European flea markets. In other words, expect to find top-tier antiques that your recipient will love, as these aren’t items you’ll find at just any thrift store on the corner. Items really range in terms of pricing. You can find cute gifts for a friend, like holiday tea towels, for as little as $12, but then you could also splurge on something fancy and, well, “posh,” for your parents, like an antique cocktail shaker for $325.
613 North State Street
Wolfbait & B-girls
This shop’s unique name stems from a term used in a 1950s Chicago guidebook. Therein, girls who moved to the city looking for success were coined “wolfbait,” and those girls then turned into “b-girls,” aka bad girls, once they lived in the city for a while. The shop sells an array of items from local artisans and Chicago-based fair-trade companies. It’s all about highlighting the best of Chicago’s local talent. The products you’ll find range heavily, from clothing and jewelry to beauty products and books, stationary and wall art to home goods and edibles.
3131 West Logan Boulevard
By Holly Riddle