Previously on Underculture Unlimited, our partner blog, Bryan (my other half) detailed our original trip to Chicago. It was exciting, it was fun, there was A LOT of cool stuff. Check those out at http://www.ucunlimited.net or via the feed below. Now, on to my part of the story…..
That’s not really true. After our trip there was still a TON to do. However, when we found ourselves back in the city unexpectedly for a work trip of mine we decided to keep to ourselves and explore downtown and the neighborhoods a little more. Well, Bryan did at least (and by exploring I mean winding up walking for MILES one day not realizing the distance he actually needed to cover). I sat in meetings for two days but was spared some nice, long evenings to spend doing cool things he found for us during the day. The coolest? My most favorite?
Making it to the Art Institute and seeing the original “Nighthawks” by Edward Hopper.
I had no idea it was there so it was a complete surprise which made it that much better. But, the title of this post is about shopping, so I digress.
I don’t have quite the same relationship with shopping that a lot of girls do. I enjoy it and despise it all at the same time.
Pros: Finding cool stuff, imagining me in it or it in our house, etc.
Cons: Spending money, never finding something that fits AND looks cool AND isn’t like 20 other people I’ve seen already that day.
So what do I do most of the time? I shop for inspiration and sales – what can I recreate and/or rip-off on my own and what can I find that is or can be made into something really cool for really cheap.
Shopping in Chicago was great because of one thing (or collection of things, depending on how you want to look at it):
Bryan made it out there one afternoon and wanted to take me back. I had no idea what I was in for. See, in Cleveland, we have a very small number (I can think of 2 off the top of my head) of clothing/specialty stores centered around punk and rockabilly stylings. Instead, we have Hot Topic in every mall like the rest of the waste of America. The Alley was an entire neighborhood block of stores dedicated to just that (and I’m pretty sure I’m not exaggerating). There’s the adult/lingerie shop, the jewelry/pagan/candle and incense shop and then there’s the clothing shop. Put together, two floors of men’s and women’s clothing, accessories, and shoes – plus two different tattoo and piercing stations. The website doesn’t do it justice – I didn’t even know where to turn. I can’t really process much now even – brand names and styles have faded away. But I’m chock full of inspiration and I did walk away with a couple good finds.