Rockin’ Rabbits

Call us harebrained, but we can’t shake a hind leg these days without coming across a rabbit accessory begging to come home with us. Some elegant, some sassy, some functional, some decorative—this is a trend that’s multiplying like . . . well, you know.  1 Rabbit lamp Black polyester base with PVC and cotton laminate … Read more

Best of Chicago Design: Hotbeds of Hipness

These shops offer that extra something—a colorful pillow, a bold lamp, a zippy rug—that makes your home feel fresh and with-it. Display it for one season; tuck it away the next. These are the types of pieces you’ll turn to whenever you need a quick shot of energy.  PLAYFUL GLAM JONATHAN ADLER   Nothing says … Read more

Best of Chicago Design: High-Design Neighbors

The Montgomery Technically, the 28-story Montgomery is in River North; in reality, the gleaming blue glass and travertine tower exists in a world of its own. Built in 1972 as HQ for Montgomery Ward & Co., the crisp-lined structure (designed by Minoru Yamasaki, who also designed the World Trade Center in New York) was converted … Read more

Best of Chicago Design: High-end design (just) outside the Mart

Haute Living At Haute Living, chairs with a modern spin (left) and Bosa’s faceted Cut Series ceramic bowl and other tabletop items (right).  This operation has definitely raised the bar on design in Chicago. With pieces by Vladimir Kagan, Piet Boon, Hans Wegner, Marcel Wanders, and other iconic designers, Haute Living constantly wows us. 222 … Read more

Best of Chicago Design: Eco-Friendly Shopping

Grasshopper 510, Green Home Chicago For gifts and home accessories for the tree-huggers in your life (or your oh-so-virtuous self), Grasshopper 510 is the place go. You’ll find trays ($85) and platters ($400) made of recycled street signs, organic pillows ($74), reclaimed-felt bowls ($75), log bowls made from reclaimed trees and high-gloss acrylic paint (shown … Read more

Best of Chicago Design: Evolution of a Shop

Pavilion Ceramic oil cans by contemporary Dutch designer Aldo Bakker In the past few years, this Bucktown shop (which once offered everything from antique mirrors and chandeliers to 18th-century French chairs) has become particularly well known for its wonderful selection of post-war design, primarily from France and Italy. The owners, both graduates of the School … Read more

Best of Chicago Design: Sure-to-please gifts

P.O.S.H. P.O.S.H. is known for its vintage diner-style dishes (love the cute logos) and silver-plate serving pieces from hotels and restaurants, but it’s also our favorite place for gifts, from tea towels to a hot chocolate pot with two mugs to perfectly charming old paintings from the Netherlands. The free gift-wrapping is a super-nice perk. … Read more

Best of Chicago Design: High-Concept Kitchen Sinks

De Giulio Kitchen Design Kitchen design virtuoso Mick De Giulio has a real understanding of details, even about such seemingly mundane things as the kitchen sink. His multitiered, multi-functional sinks can be made in any size (in stone, stainless steel, polished nickel, or other materials), and customized with teak cutting boards and other accessories, including … Read more

Best of Chicago Design: Window Into a Beautiful Mind

Michael Del Piero Good Design Wave Lengths salvaged-metal chandelier by Lucy Slivinski, 18th-century burled wood dresser, steel-and-reclaimed-wood nesting table, and pots collected from around the world This Bucktown storefront/design studio opened last year by decorator and tastemaker Michael Del Piero is the best design-portfolio-come-to-life in town—and it’s open to the public. She fills her store … Read more

Best of Chicago Design: Unexpected flower and plant mecca

Crate & Barrel   This chain’s North Avenue location has a small floral department that’s out of this world. Michelle C. Salazar, an experienced floral designer, took charge of the department five years ago; she stocks it with architectural plants and unusual flowers that complement C&B’s modern vases and accessories. You’ll see everything from lilies, … Read more