AAndersonville Galleria 5247 N. Clark St., Chicago, 773-878-8570
More than 90 artists have stalls in this three-floor space that brings art, gifts, and jewelry together under one roof. Though most of the wares are for grown-ups, many stalls carry baby-appropriate items, like knitwear dresses, mobiles, snapsuits, and art suitable for framing in a nursery or kid’s room.Art Effect 934 W. Armitage Ave., Chicago, 773-929-3600
Lincoln Park’s favorite gift store. In addition to women’s clothing, jewelry, home décor, and bath and body products, the children’s selection of gifts is whimsical, such as Ugly Dolls, crayon rings, alphabet blocks, wind-up toys, and Mr. Potato Head.Artisans & Crafters 839 S. Oak Park Ave., Oak Park, 708-848-4693
The Oak Park Women’s Exchange runs this shop, which carries the work of local artists. The baby selection includes knit sweaters, knit toys, crocheted booties, quilts, handmade doll clothing, and wooden rockers.
448 Central Ave., Highland Park, 847-432-4704
Baby gifts are the specialty of this Highland Park shop. The knit sweaters are adorable, and much of the clothing, blankets, and other gifts are available for monogramming and personalization. (Ask about the outstanding custom baby gift baskets). Most merch is geared toward the newborn to 24 month crowd, but books, toys, plushies, and big brother/big sister gifts make great toddler gifts. The Grandparent Club allows grandparents who make a $25 donation to Children’s Memorial to take 15 percent off their total purchase every Sunday.
907 Burlington Ave., Western Springs, 708-246-5050
Chock-a-block with gifts, all handpicked by the owners who previously owned shops longtime west suburbanites may remember: Abigail Rose, Finnie McClure, and French Toast. Gifts for junior include bibs, books, growth charts, retro games, little stuffed toys, Chewbeads necklaces, and custom-knit stroller blankets monogrammed with baby names.
DDreidels and More 67 E. Oak St., Chicago, 312-266-6620
Shop Jewish-themed gifts and holiday supplies, including kid’s merchandise like baby’s first Kiddush cup, children’s mezuzahs, wooden Torah sets, Aleph-Bet wooden blocks, and items for Hanukkah, Rosh Hashanah, Passover, Purim, and Sukkot.
EEclecticity 4718 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago, 773-275-3080
This Lincoln Square gift shop has a kid-centric section toward the back of the store, with puzzles, origami kits, and plush toys from JellyCat. The art mobiles make for unconventional nursery décor.Enjoy, an Urban General Store 4727 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago, 773-334-8626
A modern day general store with a children’s section that mixes quirk and function: snapsuits, Skip Hop diaper bags and backpacks, pull toys, books, blankets and swaddlers, Blabla dolls, and, of course, a Sock Monkey Kit.
GGreenheart Shop 1714 N. Wells St., Chicago, 312-264-1625
This fair-trade shop peddles non-profit, earth-friendly cheer in Wicker Park. The baby selection is on the small side—think organic cotton plush toys—but the housewares, candles, and the line of goods emblazoned with the shop’s sweet “great heart” logo are worth a look.
HHazel 1902 W. Montrose Ave., Chicago, 773-769-2227
This gift shop carries candles, jewelry, Marimekko home products, and other fun impulse buys. The children’s selection is small but sweet, such as wooden blocks adorned with presidential faces, Binth matching cards, and a handful of snapsuits and other kiddie merch.
226 E. Westminster Rd., Lake Forest, 847-234-5884
You name it, and Initial Choice can monogram it. The exhaustive list of gifts includes baby blankets, rattles, baby sweaters, hats, photo frames, crosses for baptism gifts, plates, suitcases, stools, puzzles, robes, piggy banks, and ornaments. Embroidery is available in a variety of fonts and colors.
Kie & Kate Couture
559 Spring Rd., Elmhurst, 630-501-0569
This boutique caters to both mom and child so women’s clothing, jewelry and handbags rub elbows with kiddie merch like custom T-shirts, bibs, capes, Sticky Bellies and toys.
LL’il Surprises 22 S. Ash St., Frankfort, 815-464-9856
This Frankfort shop carries adorable, bright clothing from Rabbit Moon and Hanna Banana, as well as books, toys, and puzzles. Their specialty is custom-created birthday shirts and bibs, adorned with the child’s age, as well as gift baskets for babies, parents, and grandparents.The Little Traveler 404 S. Third St., Geneva, 630-232-4200
Housed in a sprawling mansion in the center of downtown Geneva, The Little Traveler is actually a mix of independent shop owners who bring together all manner of gifts from Europe, the Far East, and closer to home. Among the many baby products available are clothing (newborn to size 6x), fancy coats, embroidered hats, corduroy rompers, layette, Laura Ashley baptism gowns, and toys from around the world.Luv the Name 312 S. Third St., Geneva, 630-232-6007 *Monogramming available
It’s all about monogramming at Luv The Name, which carries a wide array of gift options with no extra charge for personalization. Choose among snapsuits, baby robes, blankets, lovies, bibs, sweaters, totes, backpacks, rompers, T-shirts, and even tutus.
0One Strange Bird 2124 W. Division St., Chicago, 773-276-4420
This wonderfully offbeat Wicker Park boutique carries handmade goodies, mostly one-of-a-kind work from Chicago artists, including prints, home accents, baby and children merchandise, soaps, and T-shirts in a space that also includes a gallery, studio and classes for adults and kids.
RRandoons 962 ½ Green Bay Rd., Winnetka, 847-784-1890
Mostly a clothing store for women, Randoons boasts a wonderful baby gift section toward the back of the store. Baby clothing is unique and funky—Beastie Boys and The Rolling Stones concert shirts-turned-snapsuits from Rowdy Sprouts, tie-dyed snapsuits, and tees decorated with felt monsters. Tutus, stuffed animals, and blankets round out the selection.RR#1 814 Ashland Ave., Chicago, 312-421-9079
Hailed again and again as one of the best gift shops in the city, RR#1 deserves the hype. Housed in a vintage pharmacy, the wood paneling and tin ceiling make an unexpected backdrop for the offbeat gifts. Jewelry, skincare products, candles, cards, and quirky housewares are great for grownups, but the kid’s selection of tutus, silly hats, snapsuits, toys, and stuffed animals is equally fun.