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Week 29: I Love the Eighties. I Hate IKEA

It’s time to start shopping for the baby’s room, and I see a trip to IKEA in my near future. Like most men, I’m not wild about trips to IKEA. Every time I get dragged there, we get lost on the way to Schaumburg, then spend hours wandering around the store, avoiding the thousands of others wandering around the store, get in a drag-down argument, spend way more than we planned, and walk out with a bunch of boxes full of hernia-heavy pieces of wood that I have to figure out how to put together when we get home.

When Sarah brought up IKEA yesterday, my mom perked up. “IKEA? I’ve always wanted to go to IKEA. The nearest one to us is all the way in Santa Fe.” …

Happy Thai Imports Come to Lake View

A Touch of Whimsy
“Happywear for women and men” is the motto of the new Lake View boutique P + L (2956 N. Clark St.; 773-248-3758), and true to its slogan the shop stocks graphic-print tees, chunky jewelry, and outerwear that blends style with a sense of humor. Husband-and-wife owners Leena and Paul Chicmmongkoltip scoured her native Bangkok for innovative designers, hard to find elsewhere in the U.S. Kitschy “feel me” tanks ($26) hand-stitched with fuzzy animals such as a rabbit with an eye patch from Zavonna, graphic tees from Cisse, and a skirt with a delicate flower cut-out along the hem ($75) from Keven are all unique Thai finds. Those who have shopped in San Francisco may recognize Cop-Copine, a Paris-based line well-loved on the West Coast, such as the gorgeous white turtleneck with lace embellishment ($158). Menswear veers graphic, such as printed tees from Brownsound ($28) and MomiMomi ($46) and a messenger bag ($50) from Goorin Bros. Among our favorites are…

A Visit from the Alabama Crew

My dad comes to Chicago once a year. He’s a born and bred Alabamian, and he says it like it is. I like to take his “frankness” as an opportunity to look at Chicago in a different light. Herein, some of his observations from his visit over Thanksgiving weekend.

Things that went over well:

  1. Jersey Boys. My whole family loved the show, even after I told them how much we paid for tickets (close to one month’s rent).
  2. The Garfield Park Conservatory
  3. H & M
  4. Cocktails at the top of the Hancock building on Thanksgiving night
  5. The Billy Goat, which my mom insists on calling “Billy Goat Hole”…

Sale of the Week—Winnetka Charmer

List Price: $2,394,500
Sale Price: $2,190,000

The Property: A handsome new home whose rough limestone exterior and creamy shingles fit comfortably among the vintage homes in a tucked-away corner of Winnetka, this house has 11 rooms (five of them bedrooms), four-plus baths, a ten-foot-long kitchen island, and three fireplaces. The builder, Tamara Kasey, bought the lot, which then contained a smaller house, in 2000 for $549,000. With this replacement house, she took advantage of the extra-deep corner lot, giving the residence an elongated layout that strings together living and dining rooms and an open kitchen–family room combo. Out back, beyond French doors, sits a bluestone terrace and a cottage-look…

Illumination Celebration

November 16, 2007 – Guests gathered at the Hard Rock Hotel on Michigan Avenue in the old Carbide and Carbon building to witness the magical illumination of the towers top, which is now a permanent fixture in the evening skyline. Attendees enjoyed champagne tasting, food pairings from China Grill and music by New Millennium Orchestra.

Arhaus Grand Opening

November 15, 2007 – Arhaus Furniture celebrated the grand opening of their newest retail location in Lincoln Park with the Gratitude Gala. The event took place at Arhaus, allowing guests a first look at the stunning store and a chance to grace its exquisite showroom while enjoying delectable hors d’oeuvres and cocktails.

Livingston Kitchens

November 8, 2007 – Livingston Kitchens celebrated their grand opening in Deer Park, IL. Guests enjoyed complimentary cocktails and hors d’oeuvres while experiencing Livingston Kitchen’s beautiful new showroom featuring Wood-Mode fine custom cabinetry in unique, individual room settings.

Cold Turkey

Laugh It Off
We’re not saying there are proven weight-loss benefits to laughter, but who couldn’t use a good chuckle following the family-and-food marathon known as Thanksgiving? Comedienne Mary Lynn Rajskub, a.k.a. quirky Chloe from TV’s 24, brings her one-woman show Turns Out I’m Funny to Lakeshore Theater (3175 N. Broadway; 773-472-3492) Saturday the 24th at 7 and 9 p.m. Tickets are $22.50. For those who just can’t picture hauling themselves off the couch post-turkey, catch the winner of the 2007 Andy Kaufman Award for…

Housing Bulletin—Nobody Is Rushing to Gobble Up These Turkeys

By now, just about everybody with a home listed for sale understands that properties are taking longer to sell. Still, some houses sit on the market for what seems like an eternity. Sometimes a house is so unusual that it simply has to wait for the right buyer to come along. But others suffer from significant flaws: they are outrageously ostentatious; their builders stubbornly cling to the original asking price; they are in unlikely settings for a high-priced house. These are the turkeys of the real-estate market, and in honor of Thanksgiving, I have rounded up…