An artist with Nadeau's Ice Sculptures creates a snowman sculpture out of ice during a demonstration at the 2021 Hyde Park Holly-Day. Credit: Sophia Castro

SOUTH SHORE — Neighbors on the South lakefront have plenty of choices when it comes to buying their holiday gifts while supporting local businesses.

Flowers, books and items for your furry family members are just a few options in Hyde Park’s eclectic shopping districts, while you can find African crafts and clothes in Woodlawn, boutique clothing in South Shore and “heirloom” resale gifts in South Chicago.

Block Club rounded up a few stores where you can find the perfect surprise for your loved ones.

Here’s where you can shop:

Hyde Park

Left: Abby the dog visits Sprocket & Stone in September 2022. Right: A Sprocket & Stone employee poses for a picture during the store’s anniversary in 2021. Credit: Facebook / Sprocket & Stone

Sprocket & Stone, 1013 E. 53rd St. Website.

The small pet shop on 53rd Street features tins of Bocce’s holiday cookies for dogs ($12-$16), which comes in festive flavors including peanut butter and banana. Holiday-themed dog toys ($10-$25) are also in stock.

Sprocket & Stone also offers catnip toys ($4-$10) shaped like Christmas trees and stockings that will have your feline friend bouncing around your home.

The shop will participate in Small Business Saturday Nov. 25, offering in-store sales and deals on major brands, owner Sophie Phillips said.

“We always send people out with freebies and samples” and will have a dog trainer on hand to answer customers’ training questions, she said.

Open 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesdays, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Thursday-Friday and 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturdays. 773-966-4777.

Customers pose at Powell’s Books Chicago during the bookstore’s “Midnight Madness” half-off sale earlier this year. Credit: Facebook / Powell's Books Chicago

Powell’s Books, 1501 E. 57th St. Website.

The hotspot for “used, bargain, antiquarian and out of print” books is home to thousands upon thousands of quality reads and a selection of new titles as well.

Softcover copies of Edwidge Danticat’s “Brother, I’m Dying” ($6) and Dave Eggers’ “A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius” ($9) are just a few of the countless affordable, used finds in the store’s archives.

Signed copies of books by Ray Bradbury ($81) and photographer Ansel Adams ($658) would make high-end gifts for the collectors and creatives in your life.

The Hyde Park bookstore returned to a seven-days-a-week schedule Nov. 12, and it offers curbside pickup and online orders with shipping.

Hours are 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday-Tuesday and 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Wednesday-Saturday. 773-955-7780.

A collection of several flower deliveries from Cornell Florist. Credit: Facebook / Cornell Florist

Cornell Florist, 1645 E. 55th St. Website.

This Hyde Park stalwart has been in its same spot on 55th Street for nearly a century, selling fresh flowers in beautiful arrangements since 1939.

The hand-tied bouquet (starting at $45) includes seasonal flowers and foliage that both look and smell like the holiday season.

The florist’s sculptural arrangements (starting at $165) can be an organic art piece for your dining table or living room, while the shop also offers ceramics, candles and artisanal home goods like throw blankets and tumblers.

Arrangements can be delivered to Hyde Park and surrounding neighborhoods for a $15 fee. Orders placed before 11 a.m. can be delivered the same day.

Open 10 a.m.-noon and 2-4 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday. 773-324-1651.


A sampling of Thiocary Fashion’s clothing, much of which is African-made. Credit: Provided / Yelp

Thiocary Fashion, 6453 S. Cottage Grove Ave. 773-891-1633.

This vibrant shop is lined with African-made clothing and accessories like cowry shell pendants and earrings ($10) and an assortment of beaded bracelets ($10). Outside the shop are djembes of various sizes from Mali ($30-$108).

Thiocary Fashion also offers home goods like black soaps ($5-10) and a wall of shea butters ($15) in scents like Egyptian musk and mango butter.

When you’re done shopping at Thiocary, make sure to check out the Johnny Twist Historical Blues Museum next door, which displays tons of blues music artifacts and sells clothing, posters and more.

South Shore

Iconic Rush Boutique, 1955 E. 71st St. Website.

A South Side shop with a significant social media presence, Iconic Rush is a go-to for fashionable clothing and shoes.

The boutique offers outfits for all seasons, like two-tone cargo pants ($60), a multi-hued blue cardigan ($40) and a two-piece khaki set with black piping ($120). Most importantly for now, bulky items like the BX denim jacket ($120) can prepare you for Chicago’s cold weather without sacrificing on style.

Orders can be placed for in-store pickup or shipping through Iconic Rush’s website. New arrivals come in every week, according to the shop’s Facebook page.

Open 1-7 p.m. Monday-Thursday, 1-8 p.m. Friday-Saturday and noon-5 p.m. Sundays.

South Chicago

A wall of jackets at Carolene’s Heirloom Resale, 3010 E. 88th St. in South Chicago. Credit: Maxwell Evans/Block Club Chicago

Carolene’s Heirloom Resale, 3010 E. 88th St. 312-217-4100.

Carolene LaVigne’s South Chicago storefront is chock-full of clothing for every gender — with an ecological benefit, since the items are all pre-loved.

Modern brands like a North Face fleece ($30) coexist with vintage finds like a Georgetown Leather Design jacket ($30) and a Colebrook fringe coat ($15). The shop also has a collection of shoes and heels (typically $5-$15) and a small section of kids’ clothing.

Like many resale shops, Carolene’s has too many unique items to list here. Make sure to visit with a full wallet and an empty daybook, so you can explore the full selection.

Previous guides:

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