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A Sleek Shop for Customized Bags Opens on Michigan Avenue

Plus, discounts at 40 posh stores, the return of Chicago’s all-vintage market, and a fashion benefit with a runway show.

Photo: Courtesy of Laudi Vidni

This Week’s Top Story

Laudi Vidni (laudividni.com), the store that lets shoppers create custom leather bags, has a brand-new location in the Shops at North Bridge (520 N. Michigan Ave.). The sleek shop has 26 bag styles, ranging from a wee passport wallet to a roomy backpack.

The brand’s co-founder, Laura Kofoid, likens the customization process to interior design. Working one-on-one with customers, staffers help them select a bag shape, an Italian leather, a lining, gold or silver hardware, and other personalized touches such as contrasting binding or monograms.

There’s a flat-screen TV onsite that pulls up renderings of the final product; the brand’s website also allows shoppers to draft bags before ordering them. After they’ve been ordered, bags are stitched up in a local studio, then delivered to the customer in three to five weeks. Oh, and as for the store’s unusual name? That’s “individual,” spelled backwards.

Top Sale This Week

900 North Michigan Shops (900 N. Michigan Ave., shop900.com) hosts Pop-Up Park April 21 to 23. Throughout the event, 40 participating retailers—including Kate Spade, MaxMara, and Michael Kors Collection—will offer discounts of 15 percent. The weekend promotion will also offer treats from Sprinkles, and table-tennis tourneys hosted by Spin.

Market

Vintage Garage Chicago (vintagegaragechicago.com) kicks off its sixth season on Sunday. Billed as the city’s only all-vintage market, the shopping event features 100 vendors slinging everything from clothing to jewelry and art. The event takes over a parking garage at 5051 North Broadway (hence its name); ticket info is available here.

Pop-Up

Soundoff (soundoffdesign.com), a new Chicago streetwear brand, will celebrate the release of its spring product line with a party and pop-up shop at Iridium (1330 N. Milwaukee Ave.) on Saturday. The event will give shoppers first dibs on Soundoff’s new “Medusa” line, along with a new, collaborative T-shirt design from Iridium and Soundoff. Since this is a party, there will also be a DJ spinning vinyl and digital tracks, and themed cocktails. The event is open to the public, and runs from 4 to 9 p.m.

Fashion Event

The 16th annual Driehaus Awards for Fashion Excellence will take place on April 28 at Vintage Studios (700 S. Desplaines St.). The design competition features a runway show that showcases designs from students at local schools including the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and Columbia College Chicago. The evening also includes cocktails, snacks, a live auction, and entertainment. Tickets, $175 to $300, are available here.

Retail News of the Week

  • Local artist Bryant Giles will release a clothing collection. Read more.
  • Stuart Weitzman’s bridal collection is now available at its Michigan Avenue shop; the launch party is April 25. Read more.
  • Heshima Kenya’s Project Runway–inspired “Fashion Challenge” is slated for April 27. Read more.

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