Part escapism, part aspiration-ism(patent-pending on this –ism), part full on glory of transformation with a single article of material existence, I’d call myself a fashion aficionado. Freud once said, “All women are clothes fetishes,” and although this determinist view might not apply to everyone, it surely applies to me. On this recent trip back home, (having been back only 1 day) I took advantage of my location stateside, with its smiling sales people and approachable price points, to hit up some of my favorite clothes shops in Chicago. Much to my surprise, upon walking down Wabash near Erie, I realized one of my favorite boutiques had recently closed due to flooding! A sign on the door indicated an email to contact for a temporary location and styling appointment. Keen on snagging a comfy pair of “all purpose” summer wedges, I contacted Sarca’s owner via the email noted, who impressively remembered a shoe I mentioned and bought there last summer!
At this point you might be tempted to think, this Addie chick might have a slight shopping problem for the shopkeeper to remember such an intricate detail, and maybe, yes that’s half the truth. But in all fairness, I pick and very carefully choose (laboriously so) what I purchase. In fact, it was probably this fussy shopping approach that Sarca’s staff remembered more. And even though the days of conspicuous consumption are passé in a post- Occupy Wall Street era of limited job opportunity and strained economy, there are still some things that never go out of style. Like what, you ask? Well, like excellent customer care, and this is exactly where Sarca Chicago happens to excel. The emails back and forth ended in a client appointment in the owner’s storeroom, which she currently runs out of her own home. I even invited an old friend to join me, do some shopping, and catch up.
The owner and stylist Alexis and another stylist named Katelyn accommodated our every shopping whim and offered excellent suggestions and advice. Graciously, they selected jewelry and shoes they thought would fit my needs, and worked patiently with my difficult and indecisive demands. An afternoon of trying on clothes, jewelry, and shoes, with suggestions from both stylists, resulted in my newfound love for local jewelry designer Damen and Division.
As I tried on neck-piece after neck-piece, I looked out the window past Lakeshore drive to all the sparkly white boats waiting afloat Lake Michigan for the summer months to indulge in a true Chicago pastime, and I savored that tiny moment. Gorgeous statement pieces completed my seasonal wardrobe, and I walked into the sunny sidewalk on Lakeshore drive reveling in that fact that I was able to take a piece of Chicago back to Shanghai with me. Man-oh-man was I going to miss summer in this city that I call home…What I appreciate most of Sarca Chicago is that you can find hard to track and even only faintly known designers and pieces by sourcing directly with those creative up-and-comers. For the trendsetter fashionista out there, you can bank on pinpointing the next new wave or incredibly unique patterns from Austrailia, Japan, or anywhere in the world for that matter.
Unheard of these days, especially at this price point (on average, an item around $150), Sarca Chicago provides a shopping experience like no other, which makes me excited to say that I had the chance to shop here this time around whilst back home. As soon as they set up shop in their new location, they’ll hit the ground running, as these très chic ladies truly understand how to take the shopping experience to the next level. All class and no sass at Sarca Chicago makes it one of my favorite city shopping venues. This place and its cool and incredibly knowledgeable stylists poignantly demonstrate those ‘Midwest values’ Chi-town is so accurately known for.