Summer is one of the best times to visit Chicago. The winter has passed and an afternoon shopping outdoors is bound to be in the works. So, if you're planning a trip anytime soon, we've done some legwork and found the best stores to visit. Everyone needs to come home from a trip with a souvenir, right?
To fill us in on the coolest spots to visit, we asked some stylish locals to point us in the right direction. And their picks are proof enough that Chicago has some serious fashion happening there. Whether you visit Ikram, a luxury store famous for dressing Michelle Obama, or an under-the-radar boutique that specializes in styles from Korea, there's a wide range of stores to check out during a trip to Chicago.
Keep reading to see the boutiques stylish locals visit in Chicago, and then shop our favorite travel items for your next trip.
"Upscale River North store that features a sartorial mix of designer finds. It's like walking into a high-end treasure trove; the best in women's fashion." — Lena Chu
"Edgy New Yorker meets laid-back Californian vibe in this hipster-chic boutique in the heart of Wicker Park." — Lena Chu
"Felt is top of the list for me. The owner is an amazing curator of pieces that bring in fashion that is not typical Chicago. She pulls in unique brands from all over the world like Jonathan Simkhai, Pared Eyewear, KYE, and so much more that most Chicagoans might not have heard of yet. I always say that Felt would be my ideal closet. I absolutely love stopping into the store and playing dress up, and the owner, Catherine, is so fun and entertaining that I end up there for hours. If I had all the pieces in that store, then I would be one happy lady." — Shai Chung
"There is just something so cool about this store. The ambiance is laid-back and hip without trying too hard. You can find not only some great wardrobe pieces but also items for the home. It carries fun knick-knacks, art, and amazing candles to fill any abode with personality and flair." — Shai Chung
"The Han is a unique boutique in Chicago that carries styles from Korea. Korean fashion is so unique and has distinctive design elements that put a fun twist on its pieces. What I love most about what the store carries is that a lot of the pieces are items you can wear at the office so your work wear doesn't have to be so boring. Being a corporate gal myself, I find it a challenge to buy clothes that are chic and can transition from work wear to casual wear. The Han definitely hits the mark. Not to mention I am a fan of Korean designs." — Shai Chung
"One of the coolest stores in the city, by far. It has its own label and it stocks the coolest pieces from small designers that you would never find anywhere else. The store is in between locations right now, awaiting construction of its new brick and mortar store, but you can still buy its goods online! The store is expanding into home, too." — Jess Keys
"Also, if you are looking for places that fashion girls shop for their boys, you definitely have to include Stock MFG. The store designs and manufactures its clothing right here in Chicago, and it's about the only place your guy will look forward to shopping at. The staff will pour you a draft beer or a whiskey upon arrival, and you can even hang out and play pool." — Jess Keys
Keep reading to shop travel items for your next vacation.
Keep your electronics charged with the built-in outlets.
Pair this with everything from jeans to a miniskirt.
Go for a pair of jeans with a lived-in look.
If you'll be doing a lot of walking, make sure you're comfortable (but stylish).
Wear this with flats for a day of shopping or out at night with heels.
Essential for any getaway.
Cool and versatile.
The emerald green is guaranteed to stand out.
Snap pictures of your time away.
Ballet pink never looked better.
Perfect for an outfit on the plane.
We love this heart-printed version.