A Merry Year-end

It’s been fun to create new goodies for my friends this season. Their inspiration has sparked my creativity, and I have more spin-offs in my head from the pendants and ornaments ordered for their loved ones or themselves.

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My chunky beaded bangle got a few admirers, and fortunately Dakota Beads had two more strands for me at Ayla’s Originals Highland Park Bead Bazaar so I could make two custom bangles for my friends.

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Her wonder woman powers will only be used for good and adventuring.

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This set of portraits has special meaning to the recipients.

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They are now traversing the world.

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A transgender symbol adorns a proud owner.

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I wonder if I will see these pendants around town or if they flew elsewhere.

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Some of my favorite Angels got adopted.

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Frosties weren’t as popular due to the lack of snow, but some found new homes and What Linus Said sold twice this year. Destinations include Mexico and Portland, Oregon.

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Earrings were admired, one pair converted to clip-ons at the Bucktown Holiday ArtShow, and ‘write’ actually went to a novelist.

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Musical pendants continue to be bestsellers.

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My Delft Blue set stayed in the family.

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Two of these sets will be auctioned off in Houston on New Year’s Eve.

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Thank you all for your support this season. It’s been very affirming to make these goodies and know that they are meaningful to you.

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I have re-opened Etsy, and The Collage Cafe has my bangles and pendants in Evanston. Moon Art Gallery will get an inventory update in January. I’m exploring additional venues, and will keep you posted on upcoming fairs and pop-ups.

Evanston Favorites

The SJS bazaar has closed, and Turquoise Heart Angel is ready to chill (and get some correspondence done) until St. Nick drops by. Here are the places I like to go for an oasis of calm and deliciousness.

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Brothers K Coffee often lifts my energy level in the morning, whether I take my mocha to go or to stay.

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Noktivo pampers my hands and feet after all the wire bending and art fair loading and unloading. Jenny did this sparkly fresh manicure on a friend that I am in line for next.

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Rebecca Sturgeon adjusts the rest of my body with her gentle massage at the Heartwood Center (and angels get their wings adjusted too).

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Post-massage it is lovely to browse the Evanston Public Library and take a stack home. I’m finally watching Frozen.

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I get my walking boots from Williams Shoes, the Walking Spirit on Davis Street.

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Then I walk over to Dragonfly Boutique on 1501 Chicago Avenue for clothing, home decor and jewelry inspiration. Their felted and knit ornaments are adorable!

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Further South on Chicago Avenue there is Stumble & Relish, located right next to the new See Jane Sparkle shop. It is full of quirky gifts and excellent cards to send to loved ones.

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My draw angel is adorned with one of their tiny pencils.

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See Jane Sparkle offers all kinds of brilliant jewelry and vintage fashion items.

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As you walk further down Chicago Avenue your life will brighten with a light from Little Light Bazaar.

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How gorgeous is this array of color? I need to decide on a living room chandelier.

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On Main Street east of Chicago Avenue you will find the Lucky Platter which offers delicious food morning, noon and night.

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Have some hot cocoa and check out the lovely chocolate creations of Belgian Chocolatier Piron across the street for dessert. I’ve never gone wrong with their chocolate.

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Warm up at the oasis of Cultivate where you can learn all about keeping your plants alive and get inspiration for decorating your home with greenery.

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Around the corner on Sherman, The Collage Cafe is full of creative gift items to inspire joyful days and holiday cheer.

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My pendants and bangles are enjoying a sleepover there, so if you missed the bazaar, say hi to Lindy and browse all the goodies she has in stock.

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When you’re ready for a drink you can dine at La Principal and enjoy their delicious Tacos and a beverage.

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I work it off at Hip Circle Studio with Moxie Boxing, Bellydance and African Dance. Kettlebell is on the list for January.

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Further down Chicago Avenue Sketchbook Brewery offers a variety of local brews.

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And if you keep strolling you will bump into Sidetracked Studio which is having a fabulous year-end sale of art work right now.

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If you’re more into traditional cocktails, Ward Eight on Howard street has got you covered.

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S-Paragon on Main Street offers Asian dishes and is my post-manicure outdoor hangout for Summer.

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There’s more to explore in Evanston, and you might even find Liz at the Biz, the 3-D rendition of Evanston’s Mayor Tisdahl.

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I love this town.

Maike’s Marvels in Arlington Heights

Arlington Heights friends, Maike’s Marvels is now represented near you! Moon Art Gallery is an artist’s co-op offering wall space to visual artists and shelf space to artists who make functional or multidimensional art.

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The gallery hosts monthly open houses, generally on the First Friday of the month, during which an artist is showcased with their best work. I have placed a selection of my holiday ornaments on a shelf and also brought in some earring pairs.

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The gallery is located at 15 E. Miner Street in Arlington Heights, near the Metra train station.

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Keith and Dan Mooney are at the gallery Thursdays from noon to 7pm, Fridays from noon to 5pm and Saturdays 11am to 3pm. You can call for appointments as well.

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In the new year I will add my pendants, collars and bangles to the mix. With multiple pop-ups I had trouble keeping track so this first month’s selection is a little light.

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Artists can apply for space with Moon Art Gallery. Membership is on a quarterly basis.

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I look forward to meeting the other coop members at January’s open house.

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Last Weekend for the SJS pop-up Bazaar

Thursday is men’s shopping night at the See Jane Sparkle Pop-up Bazaar. We will be open from 7 pm to 9 pm at 817A Chicago Avenue in Evanston to give last-minute shoppers a chance to purchase presents for their loved ones.

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As a bonus, we are offering chair massages so you can unstiffen your holiday-stressed shoulders! Rebecca Sturgeon, LMT, CMLDT is a graduate of the Cortiva Institute – Chicago School of Massage Therapy and holds a certification in Manual Lymphatic Drainage.

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While all our gift items are unique and mostly one-of-a-kind, none of them will break the bank. There are unique and fashionable gift items for Barbie lovers ranging from $6 (designer dresses!) to $125 (vintage Barbie Doll sets).

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Jewelry options range from $20 to $60 for a variety of handmade earrings, bangles, bracelets, necklaces and pendants.

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Handmade leather bags by Affashionado range from $165 to $395.

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Little Light Bazaar’s lamps start at $85 and their votives and vases are $25.

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Biba Cosmetic’s luscious lip gloss is $38.

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Marie’s Romantic Designer gifts start at $3 for greeting cards and gift boxes up to $68.

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Cultivate’s airplants start at $14.

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So pop in Thursday from 7 to 9 pm and find something unique for your family members.

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We are also open Friday from 12 to 6, possibly 7 if demand warrants it. Saturday I will keep shop from from 11 to 5 pm. On Sunday Rebecca will return for more muscle relaxing from 12 to 4 pm. But that’s it. The artisans go their merry ways after 4 pm on December 20.

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On the 12 days before Christmas…

It’s only 12 days to Christmas on Friday, everyone! The See Jane Sparkle Pop-up Bazaar will be open from 12-6 on December 11 and yours truly will be shopkeeping again.

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Come peruse the variety of gift items we have in stock for you and support handmade and local curators of beauty.

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You know your true loves deserve something extra special for being good all year. My ornaments are waiting with baited breath to see who will adopt them.

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I also have my full stock of pendants, collar necklaces, bracelets, keychains and earrings at the store. Come in, peruse the selection and place a custom order if you want something more specific.

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Light up a special someone’s life with a gorgeous handmade lamp. Little Light Bazaar just opened on Chicago Avenue in September and has gorgeous chandeliers, tabletop lamps, vases and Alladin lamps in their 928 Chicago Ave, Evanston, storefront. We carry a few of the lamps and vases/votive holders in the former See Jane Sparkle boutique. The glass is made in the Czech Republic and the globes are assembled in Turkey. You can swap out different designs in your light fixtures, and a web site will soon offer mix and match features.

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Marie’s Musings offers romantic gifts for the lovers of the world. Her items range from expressive greeting cards to T-Shirts to mugs to gift baskets. The concept behind Marie’s Musings is to assist couples to begin a conversation about their relationship, to rekindle the romance in their relationship, and to enhance that relationship by igniting the passion that still exists.

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We have airplants and nature-scented gifts from Cultivate for the green-lover in your life. Cultivate Urban Rainforest and Gallery took over Dave’s Down to Earth Rock shop’s original space this summer. Its exhibits still offer a wonderful nod to the former function with critters and insects adorning various art works.

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This lovely shop isn’t just a place to purchase plants. The owners’ emphasis is on community building, and various workshops and the monthly exhibit parties seek to create that gathering of like-minded souls. In addition to Plant Killers Anonymous and terrarium workshops, Cultivate offers movie nights (Little Shop of Horrors, anyone?) and various workshops that cater to the soul. Check out the sampling of gift items we have at 817A Chicago Avenue.

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Tiny Frock Shop charmed me since I first heard of it. Stand back, Hipster Barbie because this Instagram feed is far more entertaining. Check out the lovely outfits we have available for just $6! Budding fashion designers can create their own garments with swatch sets packets labeled Cool, Saucy, Pretty and Cute. Designer purses are only $10 each and make great stocking stuffers. True collectors can purchase vintage and one-of-a-kind dolls and a full Barbie Kit.

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Biba Cosmetics offers luscious lip gloss in three shades that will add shine to your lips and keep them pampered through the day or the soiree. The lovely gold compacts come with an applicator and a lovely pouch.  Sample a bit while you peruse the store.

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AFFASHIONADO offers select handmade leather handbags for sale. Made in Chicago the black and burgundy bags come in various sizes and offer sleek functionality.

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Sare Jane Abbott added her own sparkle to the store with her selection of earrings, necklaces and bracelets. 817A Chicago Avenue was the first permanent location for See Jane Sparkle, after Sara Jane conducted hundreds of art fairs and home parties to sell her creations.

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Inspired by Coco Chanel and Duran Duran, Sara Jane strives to help everyone to discover their inner starlet.

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Her larger store location at 1312 Chicago Avenue allows Sara Jane to also expand their line of vintage fashion garments and accessories, including handbags, hats and clothing. The grand re-opening will be held Friday as well, with a ribbon cutting at 4 pm and festivities lasting until 10 pm.

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Join me at the smaller pop-up first for a sampling, and then stroll over to Dempster to sip on bubbly, get a manicure (with purchase) and receive 20% off everything. Wear Black, Red or White to support Sara Jane’s true colors. There will also be a Sparkle raffle ($120 value) which proved lucky for me a few soirees ago. I’ll head over there for a happy dance after closing at 6 pm.

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The pop-up bazaar will reopen on Thursday, December 17 for a men’s shopping night from 7 to 9 pm, and we will also be open Friday from 12-6, Saturday from 11-5 and Sunday from 12-4. I may also be around on other days so contact me if you want  private shopping session.

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My third Bucktown Holiday ArtShow

This weekend I am returning to the Bucktown Holiday ArtShow for the third time. This fair is full of amazing and unique gifts for the last-minute holiday shopper.

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You should check out all the goodies that will be on display in 4 large rooms on Saturday and Sunday from 12 am to 5 pm. There will be delicious food, a variety of home decor items, fiber arts, holiday decorations, children’s gifts, jewelry, candles, and more.

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I’m looking forward to the hot cocoa made from real chocolate.

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I didn’t have much time to peruse last year, but you are bound to find something for everyone and be inspired by all the creations.

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There will also be a silent auction at various locations in the building.  A table in each gym and in the auditorium will offer donated items from the participating artists. Guests are welcomed to place a silent bid on any and as many items as they like by using the auction slip that will be attached to each item.

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Proceeds from the Silent Auction will be donated to Snow City Arts, a non-profit in Chicago. Snow City Arts provides one-on-one instructions in the arts to patients at Rush Children’s Hospital, Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago, John H. Stroger, Jr. Hospital of Cook County, and Children’s Hospital University of Illinois. Snow City Arts augments the medical needs for hospitalized children by addressing a child’s developmental and educational needs through the arts.

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The first Bucktown Holiday ArtShow took place in 1999, at Holstein Park Fieldhouse, 2200 N Oakley Ave, Chicago, IL 60647. This year marks the 17th consecutive year of providing art lovers and holiday shoppers with the opportunity to browse and shop for one-of-a-kind-gifts and original works of art. Download a free admission pass (Admission is $2/person at the door) at this link.

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Participating artists who use mediums from ceramics to photography, watercolors to oils, jewelry to textiles include: One Man Surf Party, Spice Heist, Chat Noir Designs, City Alive Art, Solola, Soap Distillery, Boards & Boxes, Deborah Campbell, Alice’s Cat, Dorn’s Design Jewelry Studio, Elizabeth Kline Designs.

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Eric The Red Creations, Eric Erf wood design, Bebuddha Jewelry, Gilberto Rey Rivera, Gina Urso & Gina Herzik, Still Waters Soapery, Atira Jewelry, Urban Edges, Jan Q Designs, Dorthy’s Daughters, Ideas by Jason, Ridley Studios.

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There will be: Jewelry by Jennifer, Railand Asphalt, Anidem Jewelry, Defining Moments, Creative Crochet by Jodi Mac, Pacheco Made, Designs by KEB, Rhinestone Crowgirls, Karen Schiff Ceramics, Kate Kiernan-Wulfka, Amber Vintage Chicago, Katie Moncton, Fiore Bowtique, Organica by Laura, Julia’s Designs, Esto Imports, Enfiniti Designs, Melanie Feerst Studio, Reuse First, Nancy Segal Designs, Pranamaker, Damen Art.

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Other booths include: Paul Snagel-Works, Quinn Burrell Art, Pretty Spooky Handmade, Ram Art Studio, Things spun, Bob’s Gourmet Hot Chocolate, Palette Earth Designs, Sandr’art Wood paintings & prints, Metal & Mayhem, Shayne Taylor-Shayne Art, Love Bird Designs, Artworks by Steve Connell, Nomadic Ant, Sylvia Moore, Mitzibell, Theresa Weber Photography, Palmetto Pewter, T-Time, Journey Dolls, Yoshiko Kozawa.

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Come out and get your gift shopping on!

Least Favorite Christmas Songs

Believe it or not, I incorporate lyrics of holiday tunes that grate on me, because I know they are popular.

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We can’t get around Feliz Navidad during the holiday season. I enjoyed it the first time I heard it, but now it seems to be everywhere.

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My younger brother is an established drummer in the Netherlands, so when I made his ornament last year Little Drummer Boy was appropriate.

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I looked for a metal version and found a score by August Burns Red.

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They’re an interesting band, and I like the rendition more than other covers.

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It’s grown on me now, but Johann Sebastian Bach’s Weihnachts Oratorium was overplayed at home when I was a child.

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Still, with early music aficionados in the family, this one became an angel as well.

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When I make Christmas song ornaments the music is in my head the whole time.

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Tissue paper colors inspire me as well.

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So you’ll definitely be able to tell the favorites from the less favorite tunes by the amount of ornaments I have with each carol.

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It’s a good thing I don’t get tired of Frosty the Snowman or White Christmas.

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I used to buy a new holiday album every year, but I skipped it last year.

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I’ll have to see if a soundtrack or artist captivates me with their renditions.

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What holiday songs do you wish we didn’t have to listen to all the time this season? (My face with the Chipmunks below).

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Come see my collection a See Jane Sparkle’s Pop-up Bazaar!

A Sparkly Collaboration

When I was little my mom handmade a doll’s fabric store for me that had me pretending to be a shop owner for hours on end. For the coming weekends, I get to do that in real life!

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I won’t be surrounded like bolts of fabrics, but instead get to boutique sit for See Jane Sparkle for a spell. Sara Jane Abbott jumped on the opportunity to lease a bigger location just a few blocks away, and is graciously hosting guest artists in her original store for the holiday season.

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I’ll be sharing space with Cultivate Urban Rainforest & GalleryLittle Light Bazaar, Marie’s MusingsTiny Frock ShopBiba Cosmetics and AFFASHIONADO. See Jane Sparkle’s starter shop (the pop-up site-now without awning) is located at 817A Chicago Ave in Evanston. That’s next to Campagnola for you foodies.

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I got to deck three Christmas trees with my angels and frosties.

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They go quite well with Cultivate’s greenery.

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We open with a Soiree on Wednesday, December 2 from 7 to 9 pm. The perfect evening to pick out your pearls for your holiday parties.

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Pop-up Bazaar shop hours are:

Fri, Dec 4th 12-6pm
Sat, Dec 5th 11-5pm
Sun, Dec 6th 12-4pm

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Fri, Dec 11th 12-6pm
Sat, Dec 12th 11-5pm
Sun, Dec 13th 12-4pm

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Thurs, Dec 17th 7-9pm
Fri, Dec 18th 12-6pm
Sat, Dec 19th 11-5pm
Sun, Dec 20th 12-4pm

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The new See Jane Sparkle is now at 1312 Chicago Ave in Evanston and will have a grand opening December 10.

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I hope to see you pop in!

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