Select furniture from Modern Cooperative

Positively Pilsen

Things are happening in Pilsen, and I’m not just talking about gallery walks and foodies geeking out at Nightwood. Friday, May 11, 5-10 p.m. is the opening party for Modern Cooperative, a new shop at 818 W. 18th St. that offers mostly mid-century modern furnishings, and, on monthly rotation, pieces by local artisans who work with reclaimed and repurposed materials. First up, Emmy Star Brown (who puts her signature curvy line drawings on restored vintage window frames) and MODified Originals (who combine rustic woods with modern lines, and most notably, manage to incorporate dinosaurs into their designs—as in, put a pterodactyl on it!). The Vegan Food Truck will be at the event. Also newish in Pilsen, a little storefront called Whisky Ginger at 1837 S. Halsted St. This brick-and-mortar presence of an Etsy shop by the same name is cute, if a bit light on merchandise (it’s mostly fun retro knick-knacks). —Gina Bazer

A colorful quilt

Quilt Fix

Mother’s Day is upon us, and we’d like to help. Do you have a crafty beaver for a mom? Are you a dad with an artsy wife looking for a perfect gift from the kids? How about this sweet little class offered by the new crafting company Urban Craft Lab at the Sweden Shop. Saturday, May 12, from 9 a.m. to noon, there will be a mini-quilt workshop, where “adult-child teams can work together to make a beautiful coverlet for a treasured stuffed animal or doll.” Here’s my design editor’s take on this concept—ditch the treasured doll, channel the patchwork trend, and turn the 20-by-16-inch quilt-by-kiddo into a shabby chic throw pillow for a space in your home that could use a little sentimental coziness. Class price $48 per adult/child pair. Photo above shows Anthropologie Wildfield quilt (for inspiration). —GB

A stop on Winnetka Club's Annual Housewalk

Exterior Motives

Just in time for outdoor living season comes the Merchandise Mart’s annual Design Center Sample Sale, where you’ll find discounts of up to 75 percent at 18 showrooms on floors 15-17 (see a list of participants on the website; sale goes through May 11, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.). Then, on May 16, get some ideas of how to use those deals by heading up to Winnetka and peeking into the fabulous backyards of its denizens. No, you won’t be arrested—that is, if you’re on the Winnetka Club’s Annual Housewalk. Tickets for “Lifestyles,” a tour of five homes, can be purchased by phone, online, or at the event for $60. The walk is Wednesday, May 16, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. For more information call 847-446-1830 or go to —GB

Colorful Moroccan pillows

More Morocco, Please

Marrakesh is high up on my cities-to-visit list. But since my trip there hasn’t even begun to get planned, I’ve decided to scratch my itch by poking my head into a few Moroccan-inspired home décor stores around Chicago. There are lots of places to find the leather poufs, metallic lanterns, inlaid tables, and intricate tiles that make the Moroccan home décor trend still so popular. In Evanston, there’s Akbik Gallery, which sells antiques, brand-new items, and custom-made furniture and accessories (including loads of brightly patterned pillows, shown here). Kenzy Gifts and Décor in Highland Park is stocked with unique gifts, including an awesome pink leather hand-stitched pouf. On North Damen, Galerie du Maroc sells high-end and rare pieces, like a curved-end bench that costs $2,450. For something a little more mass-market (and affordable), head to one of the three Z Galleries in the area. They sell rugs, lanterns, and mirrors influenced by Moroccan design. For a similar vibe, check out the new shop Taja in Oak Park (212 S. Marion St., 708-386-4060), which specializes in décor items from Syria. —Alice Oglethorpe

Nate Berkus

Right on Target

Though his television show is going away, our hometown boy Nate Berkus is staying busy. On October 21st, Nate Berkus [] launches a home goods line with Target. (He already has a collection at HSN.) The 150-plus products will include lamps, window treatments, bedding, rugs, and accessories, with prices between $5.99 and $149.99. What to expect? Think hammered gold metal bowls, ikat-link towels, herringbone window panels, boxes with faux snakeskin finishes, and fabric-covered trays. A week before his Target debut, his second book, “The Things That Matter,” comes out. —AO


Photography: (Modern Cooperative) Doug Human; (Berkus) Patricia Willis