Posted inStreet View

Style invades Navy Pier

In April, a peculiar crowd descended upon Navy Pier, not quite blending in with the spot’s usual and more conventionally dressed clientele. Tourists and local visitors sporting accidental normcore shared the looong path to Festival Hall with EXPO Chicago attendees, who never disappoint in serving the latest fashions.  Celebrating its tenth anniversary, it is fair […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Just stick to it

As the saying goes, Chicago is a big small town. We’re always bumping into each other. Artist, photographer, zine maker and promoter, curator, event organizer, and lifetime Chicagoan Oscar Arriola, 51, is one of those welcoming, familiar faces often present at the coolest, most underground happenings. As an appreciator, connector, and maker, Arriola is a […]

Posted inBuy Local

Best place to start your own fashion line from scratch 

Fashion entrepreneurs of Chicago, behold! The Apparel Industry Board, Inc. (AIBI) has much of the equipment and instruction you need. In AIBI’s Fashion Lab, designers have access to 14 industrial sewing machines, multiple specialized machines, and three cutting tables. They also offer a Gerber pattern-making system—which includes a large format plotter to print patterns and […]

Posted inBuy Local

Best local alternative to the Gap

Clearly, Robert McMillan is not trying to make a quick buck. After leaving a more lucrative (yet less personally fulfilling) job in trading, he established Dearborn Denim in 2016. “It was exciting to build an apparel manufacturer from the ground up. I had a bunch of old, beat-up sewing machines in an abandoned laundry and […]

Posted inStreet View

Beyond advanced style

“I kinda just threw this together,” says Gail Joanes, 73, while enjoying a sunny Saturday afternoon on the luxuriously fashionable Oak Street. “I went over to the Chicago History Museum, which I love, went to Twin Anchors for ribs, came back, and now I’m just shopping a bit, just relaxing,” she shares.  Though Joanes might […]

Posted inStreet View

On a roll

“I’m just skating around town, just basically trying to get my miles in. My goal is up to 14 miles. I think I’m at about 8 right now. So I’m going to take another lap around the city,” said Alex Scott, 26, on a Monday in the early afternoon.  “It takes me a couple of […]

Posted inShop Local

Yes, queen!

How about a hot sex tip for Valentine’s Day? In one word, lingerie. The gift that keeps on giving, to both the giftee and possibly (hopefully!) the gifter. It might seem obvious, but it’s so true: the right pieces of intimate apparel can boost your self-confidence and your sense of play—which can make you very […]

Posted inStreet View

The champions of swagger

“We got a lot of swagger. We don’t even have to open our mouths—they just see it,” said Greg Sims, 34. I met Greg and his twin brother Glenn when we attended “Champions of Success,” a panel discussion about the state of the fashion industry in Chicago that happened in November at the Kimpton Gray […]

Posted inStreet View

Family style

Alanna Zaritz, 39, was born and raised in Chicago and is one of our city’s treasures. She is a familiar, welcoming, and eye-catching figure at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago (MCA), where she has worked since 2005 (she’s currently the MCA’s store manager).  Zaritz’s awe for her hometown is contagious, and very handy, since […]

Posted inCity Life

To dye for

“Natural” is a word that might evoke wholesome feelings, but also blandness. Just think of a kid’s reaction when they hear they’re getting fruit for dessert. The same rationale is often applied toward natural dyes—that they are good for you and the environment, but a bore to the eye. According to fashion designer, natural dyer, […]

Posted inStreet View

Sparking joy

“I guess I’m an eclectic dresser,” says Mary Griffin, 72, who currently works part-time at Essential Elements-Chicago boutique in Avalon Park. “Everything about me is eclectic. My home is eclectic. There’s not a pair of anything in my house—nothing matches. My friends enjoy coming over to my house because they say it’s like going to […]