As someone who originally opened a savings account to collect money to spend on lingerie, many of my girl friends had suggested I check out Bucktown’s famous G Boutique. Then Argentina asked me and Tracy to venture out and check out the shop for her blog — perfect! I love my new job! (For those of you wondering, I am Ms. P, Argentina’s new blogger.)
I didn’t know what to expect. While I am not shy about my enthusiasm for boudoir photography and the art of sensuality, when it comes to the specialty sex shop experience, I was always a little uncomfortable, very shy. It weirds me out to go somewhere where merchandise pertaining to the most intimate side of one’s life is on display and in your face.
But G Boutique was different. First of all — it’s pink. How intimidating can a store bedecked with hot pink be? Really, not, I discovered, as the first thing I noticed besides the decor was the curious cocker spaniel gazing longingly at the pair of love birds in the shop. (They were caged, and therefore, safe. Don’t worry.)
Animals in the boutique! How could I feel uncomfortable with animals there with me?
G Boutique was conceptualized in 2002 over brunch by girl friends, Cheryl and Kari, who were frustrated that Chicago did not have a comfortable place for women that provided both high quality lingerie as well as erotic products. On a whim, they decided to create a one-stop shop for all things romance, where women could feel comfortable to browse and buy without needing to hide behind the anonymity of the Internet. (Mission very well accomplished, as I felt perfectly at home from the moment I walked in.)
The boutique itself is an open space with a very classy vibe, with a broad selection of well-made lingerie in many different brands, sizes ranging from the very petite 30A to the more ample 38G.
When I interviewed the manager, Amy, and asked her what G Boutique was all about, she told me it is “very much customer-service oriented and all about building relationships with our clients.” They love to help women find what they’re looking for and walk them through the shopping process, as well as offer educational workshops and events. They even do fundraisers for animal welfare.
Nowadays, with wedding season rolling in, there is a lot of bridal traffic, with plenty to offer for the bachelorette crowd. Around the holidays, G Boutique sees many men looking to find gifts for their someone special — not to mention the year-round couples who come in for a little guidance together.
The G Boutique ladies take annual trips to New York to find products from reputable vendors and are very particular about what they carry, as they want to represent the high standards of the store. Integrity of their products is of utmost importance, but average prices are not far beyond, say, the likes of Victoria’s Secret. Merchandise at G varies from domestic brands to imports from France, Italy, and Belgium, such as Eberjey, Simone Perele, and Cosabella.
As a quick aside, both Tracy and I were recently measured for our bra sizes at Victoria’s Secret and were told to unbelieving ears that we were much larger (me) and smaller (Tracy) sizes than we thought. Amy was not surprised: “We have a lot to offer here. We often find that when we size clients here, [the result] is different from Victoria’s Secret … where they’ll present you a bin of a bunch of bras to try on, whereas here … we’re in the dressing room looking at the bra, looking at the fit. We’re all about making [you] comfortable and making [you] feel satisfied.”
The natural next step? We got measured!
We were much more convinced of the results of their measurements, and got a little mini-lesson in Bras 101: The basics, we knew: The number in your size is how many inches around your ribcage is, and the letters, from A forward, each represent how many inches the fullest part of your cup portrudes from your ribs. Cup size must also include “side boob,” ensuring that the edge of the wire hugs the very end of your breast before your armpit begins.
Also, did you know that when you try on a bra, you should always try it on with the hooks connected to the very last rung? It should also then be very tight (not uncomfortable-tight, but quite snug) because as you use and wear the bra over time, it will stretch. Also, each brand uses different moldings for their bra cups, which is why sizing can run differently across labels.
In case you are wondering what their top-selling bra is, it’s the Natori Feathers bra.
Amy also strongly recommends their Empire corsets because they are “not super restrictive, very user-friendly, even for people to wear out with a blazer or something over them, and they’re very reasonably priced.” When it comes to the hosiery, G Boutique carries specialty stockings like thigh highs, stay-ups, fishnets, backseamed stockings, and garter stockings.
Conveniently, G Boutique is no stranger to pinup photography, and they are happy to help you put together photoworthy ensembles, e.g., a corset, thigh highs, a thong/boyshorts, and gloves.
We concluded our visit with Tracy yearning to try more exquisite pieces on and me grabbing a little something to take home. Stay tuned for more juicy trips with us to G Boutique in the future!