An inside look at Chicago real estate

Talk of The Town: November 2018

Mark.Miles By
Mark Miles
   | Uncategorized


Season of Giving

This month, we’re kicking off the holiday season. From one-of-a-kind gift ideas to amazing ways to give back, we’ve rounded up our favorite ways to celebrate our loved ones.

Shop Local | The Power of Giving Back | One-Of-A-Kind Gifts

Shop Local


1. Myopic Books: One of the city’s oldest (and largest) used bookstores, you’ll enjoy hunting for the perfect pick for your well-read friends. 1564 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago

2. 57th Street Books: An institution since the 1980s, its labyrinth-like setting is a fun place to explore. Known for its selection of mystery and science-fiction books. 1301 E 57th St, Chicago


3. Milk Handmade: Founded by Hallie Borden, this boutique supports local independent designers. Specializing in unique women’s apparel, you’re guaranteed to find the perfect handmade piece. 5137 N Clark St, Chicago

4. Hazel: An edited selection of apparel and more, focusing on exceptional design and modern styles. 1902 & 1926 W Montrose Ave, Chicago

Design & Interiors

5. Gather Home + Lifestyle: An impressive variety of products big and small, this shop focuses on items crafted by independent makers. 2321 W North Ave, Chicago

6. Humboldt House Co.: Sourced from estate sales and the owner’s vintage finds, this store lovingly refurbishes and repurposes a variety of items. 1045 N California Ave, Chicago

Handcrafted & Locally Made

7. Virtu: Nearly every item in this stylish boutique is handmade by local designers, featuring an ever-changing selection of wares. 2035 N Damen Ave, Chicago

8. Foursided: Known for their cool framed prints, plus an unsurpassed selection of handmade, locally crafted gifts. 2958 N Clark St, Chicago

Stationary & More

9. Smitten Boutique: This special occasion boutique offers an expansive range of modern gifts and contemporary paper goods. 1047 W Madison St, Chicago

10. Steel Petal Press: Focusing on handmade stationary and paper goods, everything here is made in house on their very own letterpress. 2321 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago


The Power of Giving Back

November is often seen as the kick off to holiday shopping season, but it can be so much more. Here are some creative ways you can give back this month.

Bake up some goodies. Bring the family together to bake up some cookies to pass out to your local fire department or police station, or take some frozen casseroles to an elderly neighbor.

Host a party. Not sure how you can give back? Consider hosting a party with a purpose—collect gifts or donations to support a local organization, or raise funds for a cause near and dear to you.

Organize a volunteer day. Plan a day of giving back with your coworkers through organizations like Chicago Cares, which connects teams with local nonprofits.

Plan a coat drive. Organizing a coat drive at work is a great way for you and your coworkers to give back. Partner with a local organization, like Chicago’s Coat Angels (, to make sure those in need stay warm this winter.

Adopt a family in need. Local religious groups or nonprofits can help you sponsor a family in need this holiday season, sharing the spirit of the season with another family. Many nursing homes also organize programs to connect families with residents to brighten up their holidays.

One-Of-A-Kind Gifts

Not sure what to get? These unique (and customized) gifts promise to wow!


Pet Portrait:

Fur-moms and dads will be over the moon for this custom pet portrait!

Etsy shop: RPorterIllustration


Serving Tray:

A customized serving tray is the perfect gift for friends or family that love to entertain.

Etsy shop: Etchey


Photo Puzzle:

Commemorate your favorite moments with a custom photo puzzle.

Etsy shop: InAFlashLaser


Initial Decanter:

Fill a customized decanter with your friend’s favorite liquor or cocktail fixings.

Etsy shop: CloudsandCurrents


Initial Cufflinks:

Sharp dressers will appreciate this custom accessory.

Etsy shop: BlockandHammer

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