Tag Archives: Shopping

Top 10 Shopping Destinations in Downtown Iowa City

24 Oct

NOTE: These are in alphabetical order and are not rated individually because they all offer something unique!  Click here to go to the map and find out where each store is located in relation to each other.

Active Endeavors: located at 138 S Clinton Street. This store is targeted to the outdoor enthusiast, selling winter apparel, hiking boots, sleeping bags, etc.  They carry brands such as Patagonia and The North Face.  (Don’t know which brand one to buy?  Check back in a couple days for my next post comparing Patagonia and TNF jackets.)

InBox: located at 114 S Clinton Street.  The owner buys some of her apparrel from U.K. brands–you know what that means, they are always on top of trends!  Don’t be afraid to try on a fringey shirt or holey leggings, you may surprise yourself and will be ahead of the pack in terms of fashion.

Iowa Book: located at 8 S Clinton Street, right across for the Old Capitol building. Haven’t you heard the commercial?  “Iowa Book… It’s a one of a kind book store.”  Yes, yes it is–tons of Hawkeye gear including the Victoria’s Secret line.

Catherine’s: located at 7 S Dubuque Street.  Catherine’s is a bit more pricey than the rest of these stores so I’d only go here for nice quality designer jean–they carry 7 For All Mankind, J Brand and Hudson Jeans.

Cheap & Chic: located at 105 S Dubuque Street.  This store is actually owned by the same people who run Catherine’s just down the block.  Always check this place before Catherine’s as they sell some of the same things here…FOR LESS!  Definitely a place to go for a reasonably priced cute shirt.

Dulcinea: located at 2 S. Dubuque Street.  This corner store always has a variety of dresses in stock.  If you’re looking for anything from a babydoll dress to a floor length dress check here.

Lorenz 2.0: located at 109 S. Linn Street. Two words: Shoes galore.

Raygun: located in the pedestrian mall at 103 East College Street, this funky shop makes funny T-shirts featuring Iowa.  For example a popular one is: “Iowa City: all of the creativity went into its name.  You can also have them print your own designs.

Silver Spider: located in the Old Capitol Mall at 201 S Clinton Street #154.  JEWELRY JEWELRY JEWELRY! This place has it ALL.  No joke, anything you could want is at this place.  And don’t forget to add an inappropriate magnet to your bag when you go to check out.

Textiles: located in the Pedestrian Mall at 109 S Dubuque Street. This store targets a bit of an older crowed i.e. not college students, more like college students’ moms.  But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t pop in to check out their Hobo International handbags and belts, they also always have a huge stock of scarves!


In-store vs. Online Shopping

14 Sep

The world revolves around the Internet so it’s no surprise that stores have gone online, with some only having an online version.  So which should you do, shop in-store or online?

A rule of thumb I have is always shop in-store.  This way you can try on pieces and make sure they look and feel the way you like.  Also, because you are able to see the exact article of clothing you’re going to purchase, you can check and make sure there are no snags, broken hemlines, stains, etc. prior to payment.

And if you’re anything like me, in-store shopping is an event—having a shopping day with my mom is equivalent to the way my brother and dad feel about going to a Cubs game.  I make a day out of it, and it’s something I do that makes me happy!

Online shopping can be okay if you have a lot of pieces from the store, like I do from the Gap, for example.  Gap has pretty traditional styles and cuts—so if you’re buying a shirt, and you’ve already got tons at home, it’s safe to say ordering the same size you already have is going to fit the way you expect.

If you are going to shop online—always check if there are consumer comments anywhere.  A lot of stores won’t actually have this application on their website, but sometimes you can Google to find responses.  The reason you may want to do this is to get input about how something may fit differently—someone may give insight to a boot that runs small, so to order the next size up—always something to take into consideration.
One more tip for online shoppers: make sure you pay attention to shipping and handling fees, they sneak up on you!

The main reason to shop online is because the store is totally not accessible to you, if this is not the case, then definitely take a trip to the actual store, and have some fun!