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Shop Vintage Like A Pro: The Sometimes Store Girls Spill Their Always Reliable Sources

The concept of The Sometimes Store is simple and rather self-explanatory--the Chicago-based vintage shop is open, you guessed it, sometimes. The enterprise is the brainchild of three friends--Christine Bejasa, 28, Alysse Dalessandro, 23, and Kirsten Kilponen, 24--who decided to turn their shared love of eclectic style and secondhand clothing into a DIY artistic venture.

The Sometimes Store, 1167 W. 19th St., 773-396-7979

"We were looking for a creative outlet and an excuse to get together and listen to Beyonce for hours," says Dalessandro. After infamously peddling their wares from Bejasa's ex-boyfriend's bedroom, a gay nightclub and "a storefront owned by a witch," Dalessandro and Kilponen now sell their expertly edited, reasonably priced selection online and from an appointment-only showroom in Pilsen. (Bejasa since relocated to Brooklyn, and runs the NYC branch of Sometimes there; call 773-936-3238 for information.) The girls also hold monthly "party sales" and keep an inspiration blog on Tumblr. "It grew into a much larger endeavor than any of us could have imagined, but it's been really fun," Dalessandro says. Here, Dalessandro and Kilponen share their not-to-be-missed vintage spots.

1. Another Time Another Place"Sometimes we want to travel to faraway lands and escape reality, but we just end up going vintage shopping in Evanston instead," says Kilponen. "One of our favorite stops, Another Time Another Place, bursts with glamorous gold jewelry, silk dresses and sultry perfume bottles." 1243 Chicago Ave., #A, 847-866-7170

2. Knee Deep Vintage"You can't say the words 'Pilsen' and 'vintage' in the same sentence without mentioning Knee Deep. Known for its affordable cornucopia of clothes, the shop hosts fun midnight sales that attract flocks of tipsy, fashionable people," says Kilponen.1425 W. 18th St., 312-850-2510,kneedeepvintage.com

3. La Tiendita"Make the trek to Saint Pius V Parish's La Tiendita (you'll know you're there when you see the amazing murals across the street). You'll surely score finds that will make your friends jealous at this church-run resale store," says Dalessandro.1701 W. 18th Pl., 312-226-6234, stpiusvparish.org

4. The Designer Section at the Brown Elephant Resale Shop"Hidden behind a wooden fence and marked by a small handwritten sign is the designer section at Brown Elephant," says Dalessandro. "It's only open sometimes (just like us!) and stocks vintage apparel and accessories from designers like Gucci, Fendi and Chanel. We almost cried when we found Manolo Blahniks for $60. The splurge feels even better knowing that all the proceeds from the shop benefit the Howard Brown Health Center, a LGBT health organization." Brown Elephant, 3651 N. Halsted St., 773-549-5943, howardbrown.org

5. Hollywood Mirror"Hollywood Mirror holds a special place in our hearts. It was the first vintage store I ever visited in Chicago and Kirsten still remembers buying pins featuring The Cure there when she was 13 and the lucky day the staffers gave her a garbage bag of acid-wash pants for free," says Dalessandro. "Within the store's eccentric selection, you can stumble upon an array of furs and beautiful dresses." 812 W. Belmont Ave., 773-404-2044, hollywoodmirror.com

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