Shop Small 2013

A 365 day challenge

Archive for the tag “il”

Day 17: Meet Lola & Gigi!

UPDATE (8-3-13):I’m am terribly sad to say, Lola’s has closed. I am sad to see them go, they were one of my favorite finds. On the bright side, Gigi’s is fabulous & just celebrated another anniversary! Tons of adorable clothes & shoes!

 

Continuing with my adventure from yesterday…

Following Tammy’s (owner of Blackbird’s Barkery) advice, I went around the corner to check out a new store, Lola and it’s neighbor Gigi.

My wallet is seriously grateful that I was in a bit of a time crunch by the time I met these two!

Lola is an eclectic mix of fun. Wine, cookbooks, kid’s gifts, kitchy novelties, and even a few vintage finds. It doesn’t feel scattered in the least, and the displays are fantastic. It’s one of the few stores where you can actually buy the cool display pieces too (I’m betting many of them originally came from Vintage. I found a really cute book holder image– the book is from the library but it’s definitely something you’d find at Lola’s. Her website is more like a blog, so the link is to her Facebook page- also because her profile picture cracks me up!

Feel like taking a gander at some cool clothes? You don’t even have to go outside- Lola’s connects right to Gigi’s! When I walked in, Gigi’s looked like most trendy boutiques. They had a fantastic display of jeans and sweater jackets/cardigan(?) (I’m so not hip & cool, don’t even know what these are called!) that I was fully expecting a sticker-shock $120 price tag; I got a shock, it was $34! I really wish I would have had more time to try things on, but I did manage to get one very cool top that alone may be worth the drive. I’m calling it the Sisterhood of the traveling tank. When I asked if these really soft, made in the USA (bonus!) tank tops run true to size, she told me they’re one size fits all. Seriously?! They come in a ton of colors, as well as long sleeve & three-quarter sleeve. It is crazy comfortable and if I can ever manage to stop wearing it, I’m going to have my 11-year-old daughter try it too. I’m also trying to get my friend who has- ahem- a little more going on upstairs than I do to try it on. I’m testing this one size fits all theory! They change their inventory frequently (except for the tank I bought). No website, but her Facebook page shows pictures of new items.

This definitely won’t be my last drive out to Morris this year. Next visit, though, I’ll go when I have a bit more time to wander into more stores…and linger in others!

What’s your favorite Main Street, USA “downtown”?

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Day 16- What’s old is new again…

If you drive approximately 30 miles east from my house, you’ll end up in Chicago. If you drive the same distance west, you end up in Morris.

Two polar opposites.

Today called for a little bit of solitude and quiet…definitely not the city.

I try to go to Morris 4-5 times a year. It’s a quaint little area with a five block downtown area. My favorite part about it- aside from the Hallmark store, they’re all small businesses. Some of them have probably been in the family since Morris was established!

My favorite vintage/resale store used to have a 2nd location in my town, but now just the original exists. It’s about 4x the size as the one we had! Set aside some time when you hit Vintage: Yesterday’s Memories, Today’s Treasures. Although it is overflowing with amazing furniture, antiques, repurposed items, and just plain awesomeness, it doesn’t feel overwhelming. You can actually follow a relative order throughout the never-ending space. But, look everywhere! Up, down, on the walls…and don’t expect to see everything the first go around. While almost everything is vintage, repurposed, or handmade, there are some “shabby chic” resale items so you will find a few “made in China” items here and there. I didn’t find anything for myself today, but I did pick up an antique lantern for my step-father. He can make a lamp out of ANYTHING!
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Vintage doesn’t have a website, but follow them on Facebook and she posts great pictures of new/seasonal items.

My next stop was right across the street at Blackbird’s Bowl Barkery. This is no ordinary dog/cat pet food store. Owner Tammy Janel is the real deal in creating healthful treats and food for your furry friends. You’ll find real, human-grade ingredients in her treats- all with a conscious concern for your pet’s wellbeing. Is your pet (and you!) suffering from their incessant scratching, shedding, or digestive issues? Tammy can help suggest dietary changes and supplements all with a holistic element. Even though I buy my dog’s food closer to home, I always pick up some treats when I’m in the area- she had her nose in the bag before I could even get my coat off!
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I planned on those two stores as my only stops, but Tammy told me about another store that recently opened & it’s neighbor store. Tomorrow I’ll tell you about Gigi & Lola. So glad I found them!

I’m a true sucker for vintage stores- I’ll happily take a great vintage necklace over anything in a Tiffany’s box any day. Where is your favorite vintage shop?

Day 11: The worlds smallest store-

Ok, maybe not the worlds smallest, but I don’t know of any smaller!

I can’t believe I forgot to add this place yesterday, it’s been one of my favorites since I was a kid, and has become one of my kids’ favorites too.

The Little Popcorn Shop has been a Wheaton staple since 1921 and it’s exactly the same as when I was a kid. And the store is still only as wide as the front door.

Open the red door under the red awning and it’s like walking into your own Wonka oasis. The left wall is filled with jars of nostalgic penny candy (well, slightly more than a penny now), but you’re lured to the back by the aroma of incredibly addictive popcorn (light & salty, nothing like disgusting movie theatre popcorn).

Five sizes available (75 cents- $3.00), filled to the brim in a white paper bag with a cover so none spills. Those in the know, though, order their popcorn in a bigger bag so they can eat immediately!

Don’t be surprised if the line is out the door, especially on warm summer nights. Kids and adults will find their favorite candy- don’t miss the chewy green army guys- my favorite! Popcorn is safe for those with peanut allergies too

No website, but if you’re ever in the Chicago ‘burbs, don’t miss this gem at
111 1/4 W. Front Street
Wheaton, IL. 60187

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