By Emily Harrington
I don’t know a lot of women (or any women) that don’t like a new outfit once in a while. If not bottoms and tops—a new pair of shoes, purse or piece of jewelry can boost your confidence and your mood. Accessories alone can add a spring to your step no matter your size, shape or style.
There are many boutiques that are worth a look in Champaign-Urbana. The boutique salesperson is characteristically warm and accommodating and the merchandise is unique and selective with only a few sizes available of each item. If your wallet is feeling tight, try a day of window shopping. If nothing else, the storefronts provide delicious eye candy. Please note, hours are subject to change at anytime.
Location: 1705 S. Prospect Ave. in Champaign
Contact: (217) 344-7979
Hours: Monday through Saturday 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Sunday 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Notes: Smart, sensible pieces that will be staples in your closet for years to come—from comfy clothes to office-sassy. Art Mart also has a wide selection of scarves and jewelry. Something for everyone.
Apricot Lane Boutique
Location: 625 S. Wright St., Suite 101 on Urbana’s campus
Contact: (217) 344-7911
Hours: Monday through Saturday 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sunday noon to 5 p.m.
Notes: This Campustown hotspot features trendy pieces in bold styles and LOTS of costume jewelry. If you want an affordable way to try the latest fun and funky styles, visit Apricot Lane.
Bella Mia Boutique
Location: 1107 Windsor Rd. in Champaign
Contact: (217) 693-7629
Cost scale: $$$$
Hours: Sunday and Monday closed, Friday/Saturday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Tuesday/Wednesday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Thursday 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Notes: The Bellas are back! Find trendy, upscale clothing, accessories, home décor and gifts. Think jumpsuits, rompers and catchy tees! They sell baby items, too!
Location: 212 W. Green St. in Urbana
Contact: (217) 531-1596
Hours: Tuesday through Thursday 1 to 6 p.m., Friday 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., Saturday 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sunday/Monday by appointment only
Notes: Quirky and cute clothes and accessories can be found here. Bluebird boasts unique women’s styles for all ages. Visit this intimate and friendly store.
Location: 135 W. Main St. in downtown Urbana
Contact: (217) 344-5000
Hours: Monday through Friday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday noon to 4 p.m.
Notes: This unique shop features vintage and antique décor. Sprinkled throughout—displayed beautifully—are articles of women’s clothing for sale. The style is overall vibrant and bohemian – of course. You’ll also find the work of budding artists for sale around the shop.
Location: 1721 W. Kirby Ave. in Champaign’s Old Farm Shoppes
Contact: (217) 403-0263
Hours: Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
Notes: This happy shop has it all: home, baby, clothing and design services. The clothing selection is small, but selective with designer labels ranging from casual to formal.
Location: 114 N. Neil St. in downtown Champaign
Contact: (217) 359-2195
Hours: Tuesday through Saturday 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Notes: This chic shop has downtown written all over it. If you appreciate fine quality and classic style, this is the place for you. And this is the type of place where a pair of pants is called a “pant” and the items are not clothing but “pieces.” You won’t find a lot of wash and wear here, but clothing that will be in your closet for decades to come.
Dear ; 72
Location: 700 S. Gregory St., Suite G, on Urbana’s campus
Contact: (217) 954-1695
Hours: Monday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 6 p.m.
Notes: Dear ; 72 sells Korean fashions ranging from casual to sophisticated for men and women in their teens, 20s and 30s. All the clothing, accessories and beauty products are from Korea with only one size available. Yes, you heard me! The clothing items are all a small to mediumish size. Their inventory is updated every few weeks.
Location: 1741 W. Kirby Ave. in Champaign’s Old Farm Shoppes
Contact: (217) 954-0086
Hours: Monday through Friday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Notes: Findings is an airy, beautiful place that specializes in contemporary clothing for contemporary women. The store features items from BCBG, Kensie, Joie, Citizens of Humanity, AG, Three Dots, Splendid and more.
Location: 700 S. Gregory St., Suite E, on Urbana’s campus
Contact: (217) 954-0775
Hours: Monday through Friday 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday noon to 4 p.m.
Notes: Don’t let the campus location fool you. This isn’t disposable bar wear, this is trendy clothing and accessories for a decent price. You can find great accessories, too, in a variety of colors and styles. The atmosphere is really elegant and a welcome addition to campus.
Haven Salon & Boutique
Location: 3401 Fields South Dr., Unit 122
Contact: (217) 600-7999
Cost scale: $$$
Hours: Monday 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., Tuesday through Friday 9 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Notes: From dresses to handbags, jeans to jewelry, Haven features pieces that combine bohemian comfort with classic elegance. Not to trendy, and not too buttoned up. If you can’t make it in, check out their online store.
Although these boutiques do not primarily deal in clothing, they are still worth a mention and a visit. Check out their linked information pages for details: Arabella Boutique and Texture Home. If you are on a budget, try Briella’s Boutique and Karen’s Kloset for great deals!
Because this is a college town—it’s possible hours will vary. Call the boutiques ahead of your visit to ensure a positive shopping trip. It’s time to step out of the (online shopping) box, avoid the crowds at the mall and treat yourself to a shopping experience at a local boutique.
Did we miss your favorite place to shop for women’s clothing or accessories in Champaign-Urbana? Put it in the comments below!
Emily Harrington is a Chambana townie that left her 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. job to be a 24/7 mom to a dreamy son. Still interested in writing, Emily uses some of naptime to practice her passion and keep her mind right. Emily is a happy wife with a happy life because she fell for a fellow townie. Oh, and let’s not forget her other son, a degenerate canine named Heppenheimer.