In the city he calls a “true intersection of industry and culture,” shop owner George Vlagos has carved out a stylish niche. Now his distinctive menswear boutique, Independence, which launched in the Gold Coast in 2012, has made a move to the West Loop. Vlagos, founder of Oak Street Bootmakers, notes the convenience of the new brick-clad locale. So many of his customers already “live, work or dine in and around the West Loop,” he says. The shop itself features more than 50 American-made sought-after brands of shoes, apparel and accessories for a diverse clientele that ranges from artists to politicians and bankers. Pair an Arpenteur Rachel t-shirt ($110) with the Kapital Hospital Jacket in olive ripstop ($308) for those cooler nights out on the lake, and don’t forget to check out the latest Oak Street Bootmakers pieces, also available here. “Our customers always leave having found something new,” says Vlagos, “something they didn’t know they were looking for.” 920 W. Randolph St.
Photography by: Independence