Akira swaddles customers from clavicle to toe with a collection of trendy apparel from more than 200 designer brands crafted by foreign, domestic, and Chicago fabricsmiths. Women, men, and mannequins can browse a selection of clothing and accessories that includes the signature looks of Jeffrey Campbell and Boy London. Akira has cooperated with such endeavors as Generation Y, which fosters artistic expression in Chicago public schools.
Husband-and-wife duo Mike and Heather drift among the electric-pink tables of It's a Bling Thing, dispensing knowledge about the necklaces, bracelets, rings, and accessories that shimmer in long rows. Beyond a rose-hued awning, walls lined with colorful clutches, rings, and wrist cuffs encircle the gleefully crowded shop and engross eyes like a staring contest with a ping-pong ball. Spotlights and a serpentine chandelier pour cascades of blue, pink, and white incandescence and lure shimmering highlights across gems and rainbow beads. The owners, a retired police officer and a schoolteacher, host after-hours shindigs that benefit charitable causes. Partygoers prance across the hardwood floors noshing on refreshments, uninterrupted by crowds of customers or arias announcing the number of hours until closing.
Bead boutique sells semiprecious stones, Swarovski crystals, and the country’s largest selection of Venetian beads, while hosting flexibly scheduled crafting workshops in its design studio. Interested jewelry-makers can schedule classes to suit their schedule, and instructors will gladly host even one-on-one sessions to demonstrate introductory beading and show how to crochet necklaces from strands of silver wire. The shop hosts beading parties for kids' birthdays, and parents can craft at grown-up events such as BYOB Ladies' Night and Fiscal New Year’s Eve celebrations.
Fey & Co. has been adorning body parts for more than 60 years, providing exquisite options and gifts for every occasion. The company prides itself on the quality of its goods and its exceptional customer service, taking the jewelry-selection process very seriously to ensure lasting satisfaction. Your pair of quarter-carat diamond studs will come set in 18-karat white gold, adding a brilliant sparkle to your aura and an optimistic tone to all future trips to the karaoke bar. Use this Groupon to treat yourself to a pair of luxurious ear ornaments, or sneak the sparklies into a short stack of flapjacks for a sweet surprise on Mother's Day. If you choose, you can use your Groupon for a $199 discount for jewelry upgrades listed in the above link.
Claudia's Closet swathes men, women, and teens in upscale, name-brand resale apparel with an emphasis on accouterments for special occasions. Shoes, suits, dresses, and purses wink enticingly from their racks, flaunting labels such as Marc Jacobs, Ann Taylor, and Dooney & Bourke. Pull on a pair of pants ($6–$26) and a T-shirt ($5–$25) or replace woolen long johns with a Betsy Johnson summer dress and gales of sunny laughter ($22). A purse from Coach ($35) awaits the perfect formal dress to sweep it away through chic boardwalks and avenues ($30–$75). Meanwhile, men look dapper in a Ralph Lauren shirt ($9), dapperer in a Nautica suit with pants and a coat ($35), and dapperest in Batman's breastplate.
For more than a quarter-century, Merry Richards Jewelers' experienced gem gurus have helped patrons repair beloved baubles and add pizzazz to their soul vessels with a number of high-fashion ornaments including diamonds, pearls, and heirloom-quality watches. Snatch up elegant trinkets from designers such as Dolceoro (starting at $175) and Andréa Candela (starting at $200), who skillfully craft silver jewelry that sparkles brighter than a constellation made of neon beer signs. Lau International fashion jewelry gives wearers virtual access to catwalks and dogstands all around the globe (starting at $125), and dress-shirt sleeves looking to tame split, flat ends can find solace with a pair of classy cuff links (starting at $300).