A custom handbag studio where you choose a style and fabric to create your own purse—the multi-pocketed Susan style ($220) works well as a diaper bag. Bags are available to design online or in-store and ready in three to four weeks. Pre-made models are also available.
The Kids’ Table 2337 W. North Ave., Chicago, 773-235-COOK kids-table.com
The mainstay of this Bucktown shop are the classes designed for kids and families that teach little ones to love healthy foods and make good nutritional choices. Classes start for kids as young as two on up to teenagers and families, hosted in a space equipped with kid-sized work spaces and kitchen tools. The adjoining retail shop carries junior cooking utensils sized for small hands like mini spatulas, rolling pins, and measuring spoons; chef’s hats and aprons, bibs, toddler utensils, Melissa and Doug wooden cooking toys, and kid cookbooks.
Merz Apothecary 4716 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago, 773-989-0900 Palmer House Hilton, 17 E. Monroe St., Chicago, 312-781-6900 merzapothecary.com
Merz, a Chicago institution, first opened as a pharmacy in 1875 and now is a destination for holistic and homeopathic remedies, vitamins, and natural beauty products. The children’s selection is small, but includes children’s vitamins and lotions, bubble bath, baby lotion and shampoo, bath toys, diaper cream, and plus hot water bottles.