In my family, a successful girl’s trip typically consisted of an afternoon of “junking”. My mother, grandmother and I would pour over rows of antique glassware, forgotten furniture and serving pieces from another era. Sometimes we were satisfied to simply browse and other days we could endlessly debate whether or not one of us should walk out with that sturdy pine chest or charming set of silver spoons.
My love of junking hasn’t diminished, but it has matured with the help of corridors such as Andersonville’s N. Clark St. where the vintage home furnishing boutique is being perfected. Here you’ll find a string of shops dedicated to thoughtfully aged pieces as well as new classics.
So if refreshing your home with vintage finds tops your list of spring desires, strap on your kicks and get some inspiration from these Andersonville highlights.
A far cry from a disheveled antique shop, Roost is a bright, well-edited boutique featuring a mix of furniture, serving ware and accents. The prices are reasonable, $5 for a sturdy cocktail glass, and cheerfully arranged for your browsing delight and buying pleasure. -5650 N. Clark, www.roostchicago.com
Specializing in vintage modern, this well-styled shop offers furniture, decorative pieces, art as well as garden elements for the home. Both new and old pieces integrate seamlessly inside Room Service and its offerings are constantly changing so visit often. -5438 N. Clark, www.roomservice-chicago.com
The White Attic has perfected the art of making the old look bright and new with a collection of mid-century pieces hand-selected and lovingly restored by its owner. Far from vanilla, the shop is an adult candy store filled with pieces coated in robin egg blue, canary yellow and popping red. Colors are altered seasonally. In addition, the White Attic offers its lamp bar concept featuring dozens of shapes, colors and shades for countless configurations. -5225 N. Clark, www.thewhiteattic.com
If the preppy band mates of Vampire Weekend built a house together, it might look like the inside of Brimfield. Expect to find one-of-a-kind upholstery pieces sporting the owner’s obsession with plaid as well as blankets, boxes, vintage signage, lighting and more. Prices range from the accessible to the extreme, but no matter the budget Brimfield will leave you feeling a little Ralph Lauren. -5219 N. Clark
Like a periodic table of charts, Scout mixes iron and aluminum furniture with earthy wooden pieces to create a sophisticated palette. Old items are given just enough love to maintain the respect they deserve while flaunting a youthful spark. You can’t help but feel that you could become one of the cool kids if you could just master the Scout aesthetic. -5221 N. Clark, www.scoutchicago.com
Step into a black and white picture at Patina where the owners are perfecting the “urban cottage” look with pieces likely to be used in a community general store or at the local farmer’s dinner table. While most of the shop is dedicated to vintage furniture, smaller pieces made of wood, metal or stone are thoughtfully peppered throughout the space. At Patina, everything feels lovingly, yet purposefully worn. -5137 N. Clark, www.patinachicago.com