Chicago-based shopping site Language is no more | Bleader

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Chicago-based shopping site Language is no more

Posted By on 03.31.09 at 12:27 PM

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Late last week I got an e-mail announcing that Language, a shopping site that was once a bricks-and-mortar store in Wicker Park (I wrote about its transformation to an online-only business in February of last year), is now part of a shopping site called The Violet Hour (which, somewhat confusingly for Chicagoans, has the same name as the popular Wicker Park cocktail lounge).

Language owner Natalie Barber didn't return my messages, but I did talk to Camilla Basse, who co-owns the San Antonio-based Violet Hour site with her sister, Amber Long.  They opened the boutique about a year ago and launched the online business this past December. Long worked for Barber in Chicago, she told me, and when Barber decided to close up shop, she offered to sell the sisters her database. Camilla says their niche is a little different from Language's--Barber, she says, focused more on "global designers"--but still felt Language customers would find the Violet Hour's offerings attractive.

Meanwhile, another longtime retail presence in the Wicker Park area, the home-accessories shop Willow, is closing its storefront and going online only.

The Violet Hour is offering 20 percent off customers' first online purchase with the code WELCOME20 at checkout.

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