Tuesday, November 1, 2011

47 IHeart: Chicago!!

Sorry for the late post today... I was having major technical difficulties trying to pull pictures off of my phone to share here... Things that should be easy....

This past weekend the hubs and I took a MUCH needed weekend getaway to Chicago.  This is something we have been talking about doing for awhile now, and finally hit a breaking point of just needing to get away.

We used the power of the internet to find a smokin' great deal on a hotel in the heart of the city, packed up our bags and headed out Friday morning!


All I can say is WOW, love that city.  Never had been before, wish we had longer to stay.  It's so pretty and clean and everyone was so wonderful and friendly.  Here was the view directly out of our hotel:



We did a lot of walking and some sight seeing, took in a romantic dinner and some drinks overlooking the city at night:



But of course I couldn't neglect the fact that there are some GREAT shopping opportunities there.  Ones that we don't necessarily have near our abode...

So I Googled around and found that the best location to check out some home decor shops was on North Clark Street.


I would have to agree.  I did a LOT of window shopping here.  Well, actually, I will call it inspiration shopping.  I didn't spend more than $14 on this street on some little decorative letters and a map of the city I plan to frame, but I did take in a lot of great ideas.


That sunburst mirror had a price tag of over $600 smackaroos.  It was beautiful, but I know I could DIY something similar for far less.  Glad it gave me a new idea on a sunburst I hadn't seen prior.

How gorgeous is this lantern?  It would be SO pretty over a dining table...


My favorite store was The White Attic.  By a long shot.  I didn't want to leave.  It was basically a shop filled with the most beautiful painted vintage furniture and trendiest lighting around...



Their craftsmanship and attention to detail was incredible.  I tried to stay in there for hours, the hubs had to drag me out.  How great is this two toned dresser?


And I was so excited to see the yellow and aqua combo everywhere.


There were two other shops at the top of my must see list, since again, we don't have access to them near home.  The first was the Jonathan Adler store.  I was left speechless.  I wanted to move in.  I sat on the couch and took every last detail in {like the dork we all have come to know that I am}.  All  of the colors are so exactly my personality and style.  The prices, not so much, but I was left feeling more inspired than ever.  I used my cell to capture a couple of shots... Love.


More aqua and yellow!  Beyond words pretty!


How great are those lamps and that mirror?  The dresser was pretty divine as well!


Loved the greek key pattern on all of the dishware and the bright colors on all of the acrylic trays.  Totally swooning.

Next we popped into a Land of Nod to peek at goodies and inspiration for the kidlets.  Again, never had been.  Pretty adorable little happy place!


Since we are in the middle of working on the basement, which includes our playroom, I took note of their artwork.  Loved the bright and colorful alphabet artwork.


The little stools at this play table would be beyond perfect by our new Lego build table...
 

More artwork, loved how they displayed flashcards along a piece of molding.  Too cute!

Of course, no shopping trip or big city visit would ever be complete without a trip to the Container Store.  What caught my eye this time around?  All things color of course!


These office supply boxes are great for documents, media, photos, magazines, art projects, anything really!


The colorful open faced stacking baskets would be easy peasy toy storage for kids in a playroom, or great for recycling in the garage!


You know how much I adore lining drawers with pretty paper!  The Container Store has the prettiest drawer liner around!


And for the pantry or bathroom or even an office, these stackable storage containers are fantastic and COLORFUL!  Oh why didn't they exist when we did our pantry?!

We really didn't have enough time to explore the entire city or hit up all of the shops I had been dreaming of, I think it warrants a return visit!

Anyone else jet off to a last minute vacation lately?  What's your favorite city to get your shopping on?  Anyone have any other recommendations for me for my next trip to Chicago?

47 comments:

  1. Between the foodie scene in Chicago and the adorable stores... I kind of HAVE to go there! ahhh! LOVE all the sneak peeks at the goodies they have to offer! Yellow and Teal is one of my new fav color combos =)

    xoXOxo
    Jenn @ Peas and Crayons

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  2. It made me so happy to open up Blogger and see that you heart Chicago! :) That's my hometown, and I'm quite partial to it. I'm glad you had a great experience in the city and a restful time away. There's plenty to do in Chicago, so definitely come back again if you get the chance! :)

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  3. I LOVE Chicago! I've only been twice on weekend trips and it's on my must do list for a longer trip.

    People always talk about "The Magnificent Mile" for great Chicago shopping but it doesn't remotely appeal to me. I'm not one for window shopping over-priced high-end stuff that I'll never buy.

    Next time you are in Chicago check out the Merchandise Mart. It's a 25 story building that takes up 2 blocks dedicated to interior decorating. Some stores are only open to design professionals (not sure what credentials you need to get into them) and some are open to the public. There was a tile store on the first floor that I just adored. It's right at a stop on the L-train so it's very easy to get to.

    www.merchandisemart.com/

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  4. I've never been to Chicago, unless you count a layover for a connecting flight to LA (but I don't). The refinished store looks very cool.

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  5. Looks like you had a great time! Your phone takes amazing pictures! I'm like you, I could shop and shop and shop in stores like that. I probably wouldn't buy much either but ideas are always great!

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  6. Beautiful pics!
    I LOVE Chicago (I was there in August) and can't wait to go back.
    City, great food and beaches, what more can you want? :-)

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  7. Hi Jen,

    I live in the Windy City and I heart it too :) There's a neighborhood called Andersonville that you might want to check out the next time you come. It's got a lot of small home decor shops that have some really cool stuff in them. It's got a really interesting mix of urban (with city busses, traffic, etc) but also reminds me a lot of the downtown areas in Baldwin, New Richmond, etc. I think you'd love it!

    Glad you enjoyed your vacation!

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  8. I don't have any advice as it's been years since I've been to Chicago....but I'm in LOVE with that gray dresser! I have an old vintage walnut veneer bedroom set that belonged to my grandmother. It is pretty beat up and I've finally accepted the idea of painting it.
    Can you or one of your readers point me in the right direction on how to do that? I'm torn between going white or gray too...UGH! decisions, decisions.

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  9. We live just outside of the city - too bad you couldn't pop over and organize my life, I mean my house :-)

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  10. I've only been at the airport in Chicago once and did not think of it as such a beautiful city as you describe it. Maybe if I ever get the chance again I need to do some shopping there.
    My shopping tips are probably of no use for you, but if you ever come to Germany, there are great shopping opportunities in Cologne and also in Berlin, of course... ;)
    Jule

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  11. I'm so glad you and your hubs got some time away! It sounds just lovely!! :))) Loved the eye candy too!
    xoxo
    Cat@budgetblonde

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  12. My bf and I once got stranded there overnight after missing a connecting flight. By the time we got to the hotel we were GRUMP-PY! But that all changed when we ordered in pizza from Giordano's... BEST PIZZA EVER. Chicago will forever hold a special place in my heart.

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  13. I was just in Chicago a few weeks ago on a girls trip. I fell in love with the city! So amazing, next time you should take a river tour they give some really cool information about the city. We ate at Grand Lux a couple of times and Giordano's was amazing. We also found this little sandwich shop called Grahamwich they had the most amazing breakfast croissant with nutella and bananas, oh just thinking about that makes me hungry! I can't wait to get back to Chicago! I wish we had time to go to the Container Store.

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  14. I visited Chicago for the first time in July. It was only for half a day and I wish I would have had more time. I loved that city. I mostly did the touristy sightseeing stuff-the bus tour (great way to see the city IMO) where we could hop on and off. I went to the Willis Tower (formerly the Sears tower) and went on one of those glass overlooks-Wow. I hope to go back someday with my husband and kids and check out the aqaurium-I hear it's pretty nice

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  15. I live in Chicago and LOVE White Attic - such a great store and company.

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  16. ...Looks like a great time away and some fantastic window shopping!

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  17. I heart Chicago too!! I her up near the city before moving to Wisconsin!! I have a lot of family that live there so my husband and I try to visit as much as we can!! I would recommend getting the Fodors tour guide (I wrote about our the book and trip on my blog http://perfectlyforeternity.blogspot.com/2011/05/chi-townmy-town.html) it has great.suggestions!! I heart your blog too!!
    xo Joanna

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  18. Never been to Chicago except layover at O'hare few times. Wish that we could go and stay in the city. My favorite so far is San Francisco! they are great in style mixed with modern to older buildings. the shopping is HOT there. Cant help that I love The container store is right next to my hotel. Many great furniture antiques there from what i heard from someone I know SF is most popular for antique furniture that you can fix up. that's what I would love to do!

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  19. @Christy - LOVED SF and wished I could have stayed more than a day and do some shopping or even just "inspiration shopping", I have heard it's THE BEST.

    xoxo,
    Jen

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  20. My hubby and I just went to Chicago two weeks ago. It was really chilly, but we went on the architectural boat tour of the Chicago river and it was AMAZING! We also got some great photos of the city skyline from the lake. Also, if you like home cooked food you have to try Eleven City Diner. It's really close to the subway stop at Randolph. You can tell they make everything from scratch and it was fabulous! Also, the deep dish pizza a Pizzeria Uno is wonderful! I've never had a better pizza! I'm so glad you had a great trip! If you like home decor stores you should definitely check out the Murchandise Mart. It's filled with high end home decorating stores.

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  21. My whole family is in Chicago!!! (while i am stuck here in so. cal..) and i LOVE it there! it's pretty amazing. you should go back for sure! and hey, youre in Wisconsin right??? have you ever been to The Safe House? it's the best restaurant i have EVER visited. your boys will LOVE it. (it's spy theme.. but just more amazing than i can type about) http://www.safe-house.com/ - it's in Milwaukee. my family and i go every time we are in Chicago (worth the two hour drive!) let me know if you check it out !!!

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  22. I sooooo HEART Chicago too!! We've been able to have a few get-a-ways there as well.

    Next time you go, be sure to check out The Second City:

    http://www.secondcity.com/
    It's a premier comedy theatre and school of improvisation...they specialize in sketch comedy & several SNL actors got their start there!! :)

    Also, if you want a FREE version of alphabet decor, check out THIS LINK -

    http://www.thehandmadehome.net/2011/05/freebie-of-the-month-club-alphafantastical-insta-decor/

    Cheers!!
    -H

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  23. What a great getaway!! Lucky dawg. Love the photos of the pretties.

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  24. YAY Chicago!! I live/work in Chicago so it was fun seeing that you were in town! Also, The Whilte Attic - pretty amazing, right!? There are so many wondful little places out here!!

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  25. Oh Chicago is amazing! I love it too! I was just there to run the Chicago Marathon a couple of weeks ago. There is so much to see & do there, I will never get tired of that city :)

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  26. i totally am feeling envious right now!! i grew up in MI and we would pop over to chicago all the time. the shopping the museums the food. it is a great place to just walk around and enjoy! lucky you. what a great weekend.

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  27. Ahhhhh!!! Love this post! Chicago is one of my favorite places! My first time there was when I was 16, with my parents, to see a Bears game (we are huge Bear fans).
    My parents are very active when they go on vacation so great walking shoes are a must, and we walked every where. Not only does Chicago have great shopping, and the food is some of the best I've ever had, but the entertainment is great too! And yes, the people are so friendly and so proud of their great city. Glad you had such a great time!

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  28. How special that you and your husband got to pass the time together. Whoa! We are going to Chicago in a few weeks but I don't think this trip I will get to accomplish the browsing you got to do.

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  29. Just found your cute blog!!! :) The husband and I want to make a trip out to Chicago one day soon; you have given us even more inspiration to do so! What a beautiful city! I am now your newest follower! :)

    xo,
    Rosa

    http://redvelvetandleopard.blogspot.com

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  30. My hubby and I went to the Windy City this summer for our mini-moon and i agree with you that the people there are really friendly. They had TONS of shopping there too, which is a fav thing of mine to do. It looks like you got a lot of inspiration from all of the different home stores:)

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  31. We lived 40 minutes outside of Chicago for about 5 months and I loved it! There was always something to do (and places to inspiration shop at). I can't wait to go back. I definitely agree about it being very clean...that was one of the first things I noticed!

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  32. Oh my goodness, that store is amazing! And the aqua blue? Perfection!

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  33. Chicago is awesome. There is so much to do the restaurant, entertainment, and shopping is the best. I was born in Chicago and still live here. Chicago is more than a layover at the airport. Please let me know if you visit again I will share some great thrift stores, antique shops, and shopping. The Merchandise Mart is a must visit. Glad you enjoyed your weekend to Chi-town.

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  34. i love the ideas for organization in this post. it's quite inspirational! also love the blue lamps.

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  35. Looks like you had fun, we love Chicago too! Lots of treasures there!

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  36. Iheart Chicago too! I went 2 years ago with my girlfriends and we had a BLAST! Such a friendly clean city. Next time you go you should do one of the walking food tours.. you learn so much about the city and get to eat yummy foods! So glad you got to get away :)

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  37. My hubs and I are headed there in a couple of weeks. Looking for a great hotel deal downtown as well. Where did you end up staying? Can't wait to visit the awesome stores your mentioned. Thanks for the advice!

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  38. Oooo...love Chicago! We got engaged on the plane coming home from a trip to Chicago so it will always have a special place in my heart! Glad you loved it..it is a very underrated city as far as I'm concerned. Doesn't get enough credit for how great it really is! And it looks like you got lots of inspiration! Gotta love that!

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  39. Oh yea! I work right around the corner from Land of Nod and Container Store in Lincoln Park. Some of my favorite stores are in that area so I'm excited to hear that you liked them, too! I love your blog and find so many of your ideas inspirational, so it's fun to see the things that inspire you, too!

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  40. As a Wisconsin-born girl who's moved to Chicago, I'm glad you had a good time! And you mentioned a few placed that I have yet to venture to. I know what I'm doing this weekend!

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  41. @kidscor, I used Expedia, I used one of their "deals" section where you search by star rating and price but don't know what hotel you are getting until you pay. I had never done it before, but I figure if I picked a four star in the area I wanted, I was ok. We had priced out the Hyatt Regency Chicago first at $350 plus tax, ended up getting it through the Expedia deal for just $99 per night, plus taxes, so for us, it was a great deal.

    Good luck!! xoxo!

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  42. Chicigo is a great place to visit :-) My husband travels there 2-3 days a week for work and I get a little jealous! As far as get away - due to unemployment and then a new job, we haven't had a vacation in a year and a half. Natta. We BOTH need one but, life sometimes gets in the way - hopefully next spring!

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  43. First off, love your post on Chicago. I lived there for years and miss it to this day (we are in NYC now) Great city and great recap!

    If you are really interstd in those stools for your lego table, check out CB2.com http://www.cb2.com/ottomans-benches/furniture/knitted-pool-pouf/f6776

    We just got one of these in Pool for our living room. So far seems like great quality and for me its a great perch when we have company, but for your kids seems like it would be the perfect perch to play! :)

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  44. LOVE Chicago! Isn't it such a magical place? And I'm a fan of White Attic on FB...I drool over their pieces on a weekly basis. :) Would love to see them in person some day!

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  45. oh! I lived in Andersonville for ~ 4 years, and just moved to another state 7 months ago. I still miss Chicago like crazy!! So glad to see you made it up north to check out some of my favorite spots - most people seem to only stick to downtown and totally miss out on the gems of the north side :)

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  46. Chicago is a fabulous city & you did such a good job capturing it, Jen! It makes me all the more excited to be heading to the city tonight.

    Do you mind share what phone you have? Because I have been trying to find a good phone camera & yours if phenomenal. Did you use an editing software as well?

    Thanks for inspiring me with your blog.

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  47. @Rita,

    Not all of the pictures you see above were from my phone, just the shopping ones, the ones of the city were with my DSLR. But my phone does take great pictures for a phone, I didn't edit them at all. I have a Samsung Galaxy. It's a pretty great phone overall!

    Hope you enjoy your time in the fabulous city of Chicago! I already want to go back!

    xoxo,
    Jen

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