I will admit that just the word “vintage” conjures up memories of poorly organized antique shops and mysterious pungent odors. I love the thought of vintage, but most shops I have ventured into leave me wanting to run for the hills. However, a new website called Reppio.com is out to help guide true lovers of all styles to the best and brightest privately owned shops in Chicago neighborhoods. “It’s all about helping small businesses,” states Reppio Rep Annie Dean. “A lot of people who come to the city don’t know where to begin and might end up dismissing the charm of a neighborhood like Wicker Park just because they wandered into a store that’s wrong for them and their style.” Reppio is online and ready to help you find the designers, shops, and items that will suit your style whether you’re shabby chic or trendy urban.
While this up-and-coming online marketplace can be found on the web, its members can be found investigating neighborhood Chicago stores and sponsoring local businesses. On Friday, June 21st, 2013 they teamed with Vintage Underground on Milwaukee Ave. for showcase event for both the Reppio website and the Chicago store. At this point anyone can recommend a store to be represented by Reppio, but there are certain standards that the business has to meet in order to become a client-friendliness being one. Also of note is that they prefer to show actual models in the clothing at the stores sponsored by them. This is not just a website run by recommendations. It has a personal touch that is only found in small businesses which makes it both refreshing and enlightening.
So how do you Reppio? Sign up for their free account, set up your profile and settings, and you are ready to shop. Post your “finds” to your account or purchase them. You can search for things on your own or post items that you like from people whom you are following. From your computer you can see what designers, shops, or items are trending as well as search for items by price or location. This can lead to “tangential discovery” which means you just might find something better than what you originally had in mind.
Reppio is currently available via any internet browser on nearly every device you can think off. So going mobile by your tablet or smart phone with Reppio is available. In the near future there will be “an app for that,” so if you find yourself in Chicago you can click on the app, and the store recommendations will appear for your area. For now, Reppio is working with hotel concierge services to help direct guests to the right shops for them. Chicago is the only area to retain these services, but Reppio plans on expanding to other cities as well. Which means it won’t be long before everyone on the web is asking, “Do you Reppio?”
Lisa is the Reading Specialist at a middle school in Tinley Park, Illinois. She has been teaching for eighteen years and earned both a Masters in Reading Specialist and a Masters in Educational Leadership. Books, music, movies, and education are her life!