STORE: RSVP Gallery
CITY: Chicago, IL
OWNED BY: Don C, Marc Moran and Virgil Abloh
PRICES: $$$$$ (out of 5)
WHY WE COSIGN: After seeing what a clothing line designed by Kanye would look like, didn't you wonder how a retail space would look with Mr. West at the managerial helm? We envision something akin to a brick and mortar version of his blog: minimalist design, a mix of high fashion and street wear collections selectively placed around pieces of exclusive art. Coincidentally, that's exactly what his partner Don C's boutique, RSVP is. We guess great minds think alike.
Opened this past August with Marc Moran, RSVP was devised to be much more than a retail space, 'cause, really, who the hell needs another cool guy shop? Don and Marc wanted to create a space that carried the rarified air of an art gallery, but still gave off the "warm, welcoming feel of an intimate retail boutique." Which means while you shop, you'll be surrounded by art from people like Mark Newson, Stephen Sprouse, Jeff Koons, Takashi Murakami, Kaws, and NoPattern. But that doesn't mean there's a lack of emphasis on stocking dope threads. RSVP carries one of the most unique and eclectic mix of brands out of any shop we can think of. What other shop do you know of can supply you with Chanel and Louis Vuitton, as well as Commes Des GarÃ§ons, Nike and G-Shock? With a super exclusive stocklist and an atmosphere to match, you would be doing yourself a disservice by not stopping by next time your in the Chi, even if it is just to look.
Read on for our interview with Marc Moran, pics of the store, and the address/web site...
BRANDS CARRIED: A Bathing Ape, Ambush, Chanel, Dee & Ricky, Drapes Earrings, G-Shock, Head Porter, Kaikai Kiki, Kdia, Nike, Original Fake, RSVP Label, Silly Thing, Super, Vane NYC, PLAY by Commes Des GarÃ§ons, Rizzoli, Incase, Boxed Water, Louis Vuitton, and Levi Strauss & Co.
Complex: What is the aesthetic you're striving for at RSVP?
Marc Moran: We want to create an atmosphere similar to an art gallery that strongly emphasizes pop art, design, and luxury, while at the same time evoking the warm, welcoming feel of an intimate retail boutique.
Complex: Describe your favorite piece in stock right now.
Marc Moran: Tough to say, but probably the Kanye West x Bapesta sneakers because their style is a great reflection of our store aesthetic. BAPE is a brand that's very pop art-influenced and Kanye designed the sneakers using the same colorway Louis Vuitton uses in their leather goods, so that adds to their luxury appeal. They were also the first sneakers Kanye designed, so that's another cool feature.
Complex: Who are your style icons?
Marc Moran: Kanye West, for being able to mix high fashion and street fashion together so effortlessly. Ralph Lauren for defining true Americana fashion and Nigo for translating pop art into fashion.
Complex: What are your retail plans for the future?
Marc Moran: We just opened at the end of August, so right now our future plans are really just to continue to grow and develop our brand. We established this unique identity of being a pop art gallery/luxury goods boutique because our objective has always been to put people on to something new. We just want to excel in carrying hard-to-find, well designed, all around dope merchandise.
Complex: Any anticipated collaborations?
Marc Moran: We just launched a project we're doing with Lupe Fiasco called "Red Box," what we call a "curation" that will feature pieces from his various collaborative fashion and design projects. All of the items are displayed in Lupe's giant red Goyard trunk—(hence the name Red Box). It's an exclusive project, so the items can be found and purchased only at RSVP. We're also working with the artist So-me (known for his work with Justice and Kanye's Goodlife video—Ed. Note: And Complex's Keri Hilson cover! ), who will be designing logos for us to produce on various products—tees, broaches, etc.
1753 N Damen Avenue
Chicago IL, 60647
Mon-Sat: 12-7 p.m.
Sunday: 12-5 p.m.
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