In Cathy Horyn's latest blog post she talks about her experiences in the New York Fifth Avenue stores in comparison with today's economy. Feeling the 'temperature' as she would say. The other day I wanted to try my own version. Being the shopaholic I am, I took a Friday stroll through the 'elite' (snobbed out) stores of Chicago's gold coast. Here's what I found.
I started my shopping trip with a manicure, I chose a silver color inspired by Chanel's most recent Haute Couture show. I thought, then, that I should start at the Chanel store on Michigan Avenue. Walking into the then deserted Chanel store was intimidating, sales people and bodyguard-like doormen stared but greeted me friendly, I strolled though the monochromatic space akwardly yet nochalant. I spotted the new 'Nouvelle Vague' polish, a creamy turquoise that would have already sold out elsewhere. I considered buying it at first, but it was a tad too tacky for me. I proceeded to look through some of the spring merchandise, their selection was rather disappointing but a few stunning jackets and delicate blouses made up for it. On my way out of that weird shoe department, a salewomen commented on my Nice Collective shirt saying it was "odd" which I took as a compliment. I then left headed towards Barney's.
Stepping into the airy, equally deserted space at Barney's I immediately headed up to the second floor women's shoe department to scout out some new Spring merchandise. I entered, surprised and delighted to see the floor fully stocked and rather busy. I scouted out some beautiful shoes; those satin Miu Miu wedges, Givenchy studded flats, and the Proenza surfer wedge were just few the great finds. As i walked around, their nice salepeople wrapped up some rather large sales and women left with several bags each. As i looked in horror at the gaudy Christian Louboutin stilettos, the calm at Barney's was roared over by a group of valley girls on a shopping spree. One tried on a horrendous 7-inch Louboutin wedge that was studded over with glittter and patent that had to easily cost +$1500. The rest of them screamed out 'how fierce they were' and pleaded her to buy them. I eavesdropped for several minutes, laughed loudly at them, and then left for Ikram. I picked up a beautiful pair of neon socks at Ikram ala Comme des Garcons, recieving great sales help from the oddly nice (usually cold) salepeople. My trip being wrapped up nicely from the mecca of all stores.
My day was rather nice, and it was incredibly comforting to know fashion is not headed as far left as was predicted in dreary 2009. People shopped, laughed, and had fun like they used to. Keep it up, I'll be right there with ya.

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