Retail Therapy: Cutest Boutique in Chicago

I love a good boutique. I keep running lists of the must try shops in just about every city I might visit, that’s how much I love them. So when I heard about a new one that recently opened in Chicago, it went on my list of places to check out if I ever got a chance. I mean, it had to be good if we were hearing about it all the way in California, right? Just so happened, one of our favorite photographers, Aubrie Pick, had a quick trip to the Windy City a couple of weeks ago and was able to pay the cutest new boutique in town, called Tusk, a visit for us!

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Tusk was opened just a few months back by owner, Mary Eleanor Wallace. A nurse by day and curator by night, she had always wanted a collected space of her own. Her friends, mostly all in the creative industry and her family, a long line of antique dealers, inspired her to open up shop and Tusk was born.

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One of the first things that captures your eye when you walk in is this awesome dried out Cholla cactus tree. She found it on Craigslist {of all places!} and painted it white for a clean, modern feel that almost makes it look like it’s made out of clay. I love the structural shape and texture it has. It’s by far one of the most beautiful and unique ways I’ve seen to display jewelry from local makers Sarah Shikama and Debbie Carlos. Those necklaces are pieces of art!

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Inside the shop you’ll find great vintage pieces, all basic and minimal designs but made up of gorgeous quality textiles that make them special. Think silk and linen tops, high waisted pants, oversized cardigans and some fun tribal print jackets – perfect for fall. You’ll even find some Jil Sander and other luxe designers in the mix.

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We love a store that is truly curated from the heart and Tusk is one of those places you can find that. The owner has chosen to carry treasures from local artisans and creatives. Cute publications, special release records, and canned goods all make this store such a gem.

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Speaking on local creatives, can we talk about these light fixtures for a moment? They were made by local ceramicist Susan Dwyer who you may know for her famous paper mache and gold leaf creations. She took on the challenge of creating custom fixtures for Tusk, a venture she had never done before, and they came out beautifully. I love the cutout pendant!

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If you are in the Chicago area or are planning to visit soon, Tusk is a must stop shop to visit. We’re obsessed. And you might be there just in time for Mary Eleanor’s completed collection of 20 limited edition tops that she has helped design with January Prints. With her eye, we know anything she touches will be amazing!

original photography for apartment 34 by Aubrie Pick 

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