When in Chicago: Create + Cultivate, The Shudio, Birch Box Event, and more

I recently went to Chicago with my lovely friend Andrea who blogs over at the Blonde BedHead! We attended the Create + Cultivate conference and had a great time bumming around the city doing our best to blend in with the locals. We stayed at the Congress Hotel, which I highly DO not recommend. This place was straight out of the moving The Shining, equipped with musty smelling room, flickering room lights, 50’s or earlier wall paper, creepy carpeting and all. After we shared about our stay with some friends, one said “oh, I think that place is haunted!” … oh realllllyyyy… let me tell you, if Hollywood is looking for a horror movie set I highly recommend The Congress Hotel. Thankfully we didn’t have to spend much time in our room, as we were out bustling around the city!

Andrea and I arrived at said sketchy hotel late on Thursday evening, we spent the day Friday walking the streets of Chicago, well Andrea walked, I followed, she knows the area like the back of her hand as she has lived their before not to mention I’ve met my match as this girl buzzes like a honey bee on the move. I loved it. Girl has mad directional/planning skills. We started our morning off at Intelligentsia coffee and then made our way down some lovely streets, taking snapchat videos and photos along the way.




We attended the Birch + Box event and got to sip virgin mimosas, and eat some delicate morsels being delivered to us via platter from the catering staff. Andrea and I both filled up a complimentary Birch + Box with goodies and then I purchased one as a gift for Dusty. We chatted with blog friends and enjoyed the atmosphere.



After the Birch + Box event we made our way to TopShop, Zara, and a few other lovely places but I mostly loved the time we spent at The Shudio in the Pilsen area! I tried on some loveliness from Rachel, owner of Rawson, this woman has some made thrifting skills that I need to hone in on and then I spent time trying on beautiful handmade jewelry items from ClydesRebirth and got to meet the gal behind the designs, Merl, this woman is amaaazzzing. You know when you meet someone and right away you just have this love for them and their amazing personality? Something in your head just says, “if we lived closer together we’d be tight”. Yea…pretty much that’s her and I wouldn’t be surprised if I am not the only one that feels that way around her.






So Soooooo in love with this necklace….



After shopping and bumming around, Andrea and I headed back to horror-ville hotel to freshen up and prepare for the cocktail party that was happening to kick off the conference weekend. We Uber’d to the event, which was my first time ever “Ubering” if you haven’t learned about Uber, you need to! It was great. And not as creepy feeling as I thought it would be. Basically there is a phone app you can download called Uber and you it lets random people who’ve registered through the program pick you up in their personal vehicles (like a taxi service) and bring you where you need to go. My initial paranoid reaction was “stranger danger” but it was pretty legit and I was 100% comfortable!

Following the cocktail party we met up with my friend Laurel and her friend Dinah for dinner at RPM Italian Restaurant which had Fannntastical food. Just plain fantastic. We made sure to call it a night early because the next morning around 5:30 a.m. we were up getting ready for a full day conference!

The conference went great! I loved all of the careful design and decor work they put in to it, it made for great photo ops and a beautiful atmosphere. We hit the road by roughly 4:00 p.m. and made it home in time to snuggle the pups, have some food, and relax before bedtime. A whirlwind of a trip but extremely fun. Chicago is definitely on my list of repeat visit cities.






What do you think of Chicago? Love or hate? Let me know in the comments below 🙂

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