Taking a large side-step from food and the all verbs involving culinary pursuits, I’m going to fem this place up for a few paragraphs and write about something I don’t usually care for or concern myself with; shopping. I deeply appreciate the adorable hoards of people scampering around Chicago in their effortless style. Like with many trends, I’m late to the “in” style. I don’t care enough. My fashion usually reflects that of something who could not have put in less effort, rather than effortless. But semi-annually to quarterly I jump in the game and pretend to care and this recent weekend of birthday/independence madness sparked something in me. Donning some frocks from major retailers aside, I’d mostly like to give big credit and ups to a great little shop where you can not only buy, but also sell, local. Wolfbait & B-girls to the rescue! Spending a heap of hours being ridiculously feminine, my lady friends and I celebrated a friend in doing both brunch and a nail salon for her birthday. I know, it’s almost nauseating. You judge and then you do and then you know. It’s lovely, my alien feet have never looked better. Well, as good as they can look. After a warm breakfast/ lunch collecting UV Rays and wrinkles, we expelled more sweat out of our pores finding the salon, cooled off, and then braved the influx of Vitamin D again for the walk back to the car. On our summer stroll down the beautiful streets of Logan Squared popped a delightful little surprise, the warm and enticing threads and accessories of Wolfbait and B-girls. Why not stop in and ramp up this girliness?
If I were to adopt a style, this place would be it. Eclectic, well-made, artistically inspired pieces all hand-crafted by Chicago artisans and fair-trade companies. The irony is it is geared toward people like me and my friends who are pursuing art themselves and therefore cannot afford other people’s art. It’s a cruel, cruel world. Nonetheless I scrounged some change for some beautifully made jewelry items (I find it cheaper to accessorize well and clothe myself via Target and H&M). The bracelet photographed is made via some metal and glass process and the earrings by a Chicago resident from Africa, who recycled her mailing material and made something beautiful for someone else, me. Every so often I intend to reward my hard work with another piece from this place and my wardrobe will hopefully then reflect my inner belief that quality always supersedes quantity.
What makes W&B-g even more special is that they’re run by two badass women who are contributing to the process themselves. The shop is not only in a great up-and-coming neighborhood with gorgeous surroundings, but the inside is so indicative of the love and passion that went in to each piece. I’m so in awe of the artists who contribute and have the deepest respect for the women who run it. Who runs the world? Men, but we’re closing in. Watch out!
Rounding out its greatness, W&B-g offers workshops for those interested in making their own pieces of art and potentially getting in on the distribution, along with artist trunk shows many weekends out of the month. I just may attend and learn the process of making the beautiful bracelet I now am only admiring. What an accomplishment to have the courage to create a piece of work and put it out there. Might seem easy to some but those like me may relate. My incredible, talented friends here in Chicago are teaching me art takes many forms and even appreciating art is an art. Whatever, geniuses like them and the creative experts at Wolfbait & B-girls are walking the walk and I’m happy to talk their talk. If you’re in Chicago, temporarily or permanently, pay them a visit.
Buy local. Sell local. Eat local. Drink local. Enjoy local.