Sales Check

5 years
ago

 

Custom Movie T-shirt Line Launches

Insiders Welcome
Combining their love for classic cinema with elements of design, lifelong friends and Chicago multimedia artists Ryan Barkan and Dave Yakir launched belowtheCollar.com (773-687-0520), a movie-inspired T-shirt company, in mid-June. “All the movie shirts out there are mainstream. We wanted to create shirts that aren’t…

5 years
ago

 

Mineral makeup boutique in Naperville

Made in the Shade
During her time as a fashion consultant and manager of various cosmetic counters, Heather Hanson, a Northwest suburbanite, stumbled into the field of mineral makeup more than a decade ago. Back then, the product was just breaking into the market and gave Hanson the idea to make a high-quality cosmetics line that was affordable. Hanson contacted…

5 years
ago

 

Salon-Boutique Combo in Barrington

Two Birds, One Stone
When north suburban twins Mary Sirois and Molly Kiefer decided to create their own business, they kept family and unity in mind. The result: Mia Sorella (104 S. Cook St., Barrington; 847-842-5009, mia-sorella.com), or ‘my sister’ in Italian, a relatively new combination salon and boutique located in the heart of downtown Barrington. “We wanted to make a place where you felt like you were shopping and getting beauty tips from your…

5 years
ago

 

USDA Certified Organic Wellness Facility

Giving green a new name

Born and raised in Yugoslavia, Lillian Ostojich says she has spent most of her life developing ways to encourage healthy ways of living. A doctor who has dabbled in business, Ostojich created Zoetica (1250 N. LaSalle Dr.; 866-963-8422, zoetica.net), an organic health and wellness facility certified by the USDA—perhaps the nation’s first. “We really did everything possible to make it as pure as possible,” says Ostojich, who spent nearly four years planning…

5 years
ago

 

Greenheart Shop Moves to Wicker Park

New Spot for a Green Shop
Chicago’s only nonprofit, eco-friendly, fair trade store, the Greenheart Shop (312-264-1625, greenheartshop.org) has taken over the former Porte Rouge (porterouge.biz) building at 1911 West Division Street. Opening earlier this month, the bigger space now provides a wider selection of sustainable clothing, jewelry, body products, home décor, and accessories, such as…

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5 years
ago

 

New Highland Park Shop Expands

More Posh
Susan Carlson planned for her first business venture, Posh Essentials (658 Central Ave., Highland Park; 847-945-7674, shoppingposh.com), to be a lingerie store. But shortly after opening in mid-April, Carlson, a principal of the company, quickly saw that customers wanted more. “We found that people loved to come in and buy gifts for each other, so we…

5 years
ago

 

Michigan Avenue’s Newest Eco-Friendly Spa

Renewed
Despite the recession, Vipul (Victor) Aggarwal has continued to expand his small, family-run business. The 29-year-old entrepreneur recently opened Renew Spa (980 N. Michigan Ave., 2nd floor; 312-526-3891, renewspachicago.com), his third start-up business in three years. Believing that spas were either overpriced or dingy, Aggarwal sought to…

5 years
ago

 

The 900 Shops Adds Purse Boutique

It’s in the Bag
A few years ago, Debbie Jagel looked around at the bags and purses women were carrying and sensed opportunity—a need for purses that more deftly complemented women’s styles. And so she set about designing a line of purses and bags made of unique materials and equipped with interchangeable straps that could be swapped out to match different outfits. Last month she opened the boutique Ootra

5 years
ago

 

Event Planning Boutique in Wicker Park

Party On
Three years after working together as event planners at the Merchandise Mart (222 Merchandise Mart Plaza; 800-677-6278 mmart.com), Stephanie Hlinak and Myca Smith wanted to take consulting services to the next level. So the pair opened…

5 years
ago

 

Piazza Sempione Opens on Oak Street

A Milan Icon Comes to Town
Piazza Sempione (34 E. Oak St.; 312-280-1129, piazzasempione.com) recently opened on the Gold Coast, bringing more cachet to Oak Street’s prestigious shopping strip. Located in the former Sugar Magnolia space, the new boutique marks the Milan-based brand’s third stand-alone location in the United States. “We have a very loyal following in Chicago,” says Oriana VanSomeren, the shop’s general manager. “It just made sense to…

5 years
ago

 

Eco-friendly Salon in Wicker Park

Hair and Wake Up
Combining her love for style with her passion for going green, Jamie Bushman opened The Circle Salon (2135 W. Division St.; 773-715-1026, thecirclesalon.com), a new environmentally friendly shop in Wicker Park. “We go through so much waste as an industry because of our packaging,” says Bushman, who has been a hair and makeup stylist for more than 10 years. “It’s really important to be conscious of that and to make whatever effort you…

5 years
ago

 

Vintage Finds on the Gold Coast

Sofia So Good
After years of working in Los Angeles, Chicago native Ashley Zisook returned home to discover that she was unsatisfied with the city’s vintage shops. So, the veteran vintage sample sale organizer rented out an office space and, within three weeks, opened Sofia Vintage Boutique (1165 N. Clark St., Ste. 400; 312-640-0878). The new Gold Coast shop is named after the Academy Award-winning Italian actress Sophia Loren, who Zisook believes is the “true meaning of class and grace.” The shop carries men and women’s clothing and accessories from the 1920s through 1980s. Co-owning the shop with her sister, Allison Zisook Goldstein, Zisook personally selects every item from resale shops all over the country and will sometimes alter items; for example, she cut at least six inches off the sleeves on 1970s boho brown, pink, and…

5 years
ago

 

Designer Dress Rentals in Lake View

Loan Sharks
Chicago natives Teonna Ingram and Bree Lara understand how difficult it can be to stay fashionable without spending lots of money on designer clothing. Earlier this month, the pair opened BADC (3221 N. Sheffield Ave.; 773-904-8735, shopbadc.com), a designer dress–leasing boutique in Lake View. BADC, which stands for Borrow a Dress Couture, carries a range of seasonal designer dresses in sizes 0 to 18 and maternity clothing that women can rent for…

5 years
ago

 

Price Friendly Boutique in Boystown

Similar Style, Lower Prices
Marc Engel moved to Chicago in 1996 and within weeks of his arrival open Chasalla (106 E. Oak St.; 312-640-1940), a high-end designer boutique. Upon its opening, Engel still wanted to bring a second, trendy shop to a busier Chicago neighborhood. Staying true to his word, the German native opened CRAM Fashion (3331 N. Broadway St.; 773-477-1737) in Boystown earlier this month. While the boutique carries some of…

5 years
ago

 

Thread Lounge Opens in Lincoln Park

Not the First, Not the Last
After years of gaining popularity across the United States through her designer sample sales, Colleen Schmidt opened the Midwest’s first permanent Thread Lounge (918 W. Armitage Ave.; 773-281-0011, threadlounge.com) last month. The new Lincoln Park shop offers up to 75 percent off wholesale clothing and accessories from more than 350 designers, including 2bfree, Gossip, and T-Bags. With two other permanent shops in…