Take a breather during this weekend's Renegade Craft Fair by popping into these Division Street shops.
Mulberry & Me
First-time shop owner and New York transplant Jana Zacek fills her womenswear store with a mix of comfortably sexy, day-to-night attire. Zacek does a fine job mixing and matching higher-end brands—Twelfth Street by Cynthia Vincent, Seven jeans and Lia Kes tops and dresses—with affordable pieces by BB Dakota and Splendid. For the most part, you’ll find the selection light on prints, heavy on texture (especially soft leathers and buttery cashmeres), with an ample supply of looser-fitting draped tops and dresses in a neutral palette. Add an accessory such as a tie-dye scarf or velveteen handbag to make any look pop. 2019 W Division St (773-952-7551).
The local outpost of the small Beadniks franchise will erase any memories of schlocky bead shops from your past. In addition to offering an impressive variety of materials—everything from semiprecious stones to rainbow-colored felt balls to Afghani coins—the store caters to the less crafty set with premade accessories such as wooden bangles, chunky plastic rings and filigree earrings. Stop by Wednesday evenings from 5–9pm and enjoy a free glass of bubbly while learning how to use freshwater pearls. 1937 W Division St (773-276-2323, beadniks.com/chicago).
Bonnie & Clyde’s
Pieces such as asymmetrical leather vests, bat-winged blousy tops and harem pants are just the kind of apparel you’ll find at this rock & roll avant-garde mens- and womenswear shop. Fashion icons Yohji Yamamoto, Vivienne Westwood and Rick Owens sell alongside lesser-known designers such as Wrath Arcane and Bess NYC. Limited-edition art prints and noteworthy accessories including classy leather Billykirk satchels offer an alternative to the rather “out there” attire. 1751 W Division St (773-235-2680, bonnieandclydes.com).
The selection at this eco-fair-trade nonprofit shop (oy, that’s a mouthful) runs the gamut from tops made by Nepalese women to soccer balls produced by Pakistani workers to organic cotton underwear made by Indian nuns. Shopping is only a fraction of the experience here; volunteer opportunities are numerous, along with educational events in the evening (meditation classes, book clubs and fair-trade coffee tastings, to name a few). 1911 W Division St (312-264-1625, greenheartshop.org).