It’s our pleasure to shine the spotlight on one of the sweetest spots in Chicago, Smitten Boutique. Kirstin and Kyleigh greet their clients with a warm welcome, a glass of wine, and most importantly, an experience that transforms into a lasting relationship far past the first trip to this charming shop. We are looking forward to Smitten Boutique’s upcoming trunk show where we will get to work side by side with some of the loveliest ladies in the business! Here’s a little look inside their doors on West Madison Street and thoughts from store owner Kirstin:
Q: Tell us a little bit about yourself and how your boutique came to be? Is this something you have always wanted to do?
A: When I was in college, I used to jog past the cute shops nearby and dreamed of owning one someday. Fast forward ten years, I was walking our dog through our neighborhood and saw a “for sale” sign in the window of a small retail space. I believed in the West Loop neighborhood and it just felt right. My husband jumped on board and a month later we were figuring out what our store was going to look like!
Q: How would you describe your space to somebody that has never visited before? We want to hear all the details!
A: Smitten has become a staple boutique in Chicago’s West Loop over the past decade. The bright, open store is a welcoming space for our clients to relax in while they peruse our selection of gifts. They are always welcome to enjoy a glass of wine while they create custom invitations or stationery with one of our talented consultants. Our team loves getting to know our clients which cultivate long lasting relationships through the years. Whether we are helping to design your paper goods, finding you the perfect gift for a new baby, a bridal event, a birthday, a holiday, a housewarming or an everyday gift, we’re here to help you select the best!
Q: What are some of the most rewarding aspects of your job? What do you find the most challenging?
A: My favorite part by far is the creative brainstorming process where we look at a couple’s wedding inspirations and help them dream up the perfect paper goods to compliment their event! Whether it’s a custom illustration, a luxe 2-ply paper, a hand-dyed silk ribbon or the perfect shade of blush – there is always something that just ties it all together and says ‘this is our wedding’ for a couple. It’s our job to help couples get there! The most challenging part of the job is probably juggling home life and Smitten life. I could spend 100% of my time working on things for Smitten but I have three adorable, small children and an amazing husband who I would love to spend ALL of my time with as well – so finding a balance can be tricky when you love what you do.
Q: What do you think your clients enjoy most about working with Smitten Boutique?
A: Planning a wedding can be overwhelming because it’s often the first time a couple has planned a party of this caliber, yet they want it to be perfect. (And how many times do you get something perfect the first time you do it?). I think we provide a trusted partner for our clients and help guide them through the process, so that they can enjoy the ride rather than stressing about whether they are doing everything correctly. That’s our job!
Q: Anything else we should know or that you would like to share?
A: I feel so lucky to be a part of our local community and a partner to so many amazing vendors on both the retail and stationery sides of our business. I hope our customers realize what an impact they have on our business when they choose to walk through the door. I don’t think anyone should shop local out of obligation or pity as I am a busy woman who can appreciate the convenience of online shopping, but I hope that the enjoyment our customers get out of visiting us, our customer service, and true desire to go the extra mile for our customers will continue to win the business of so many great people and that Smitten will be around for many decades to come!