The Best Places To Shop Local in and Around Evanston

It is no secret that Evanston is one of the best cities in the Chicagoland area. Just fifteen miles north of downtown Chicago, it has been named in the Top 100 Best Places to Live in the U.S. for 2023.

The city’s vibrant cultural scene, accessible public transportation system, and enviable position as home to a nationally ranked university, all amid the picturesque backdrop of Lake Michigan, make it a must-stop spot.

A hidden gem that truly has something for everyone, Evanston stores range from resale and consignment shops, high-end boutiques, and cafes to bookstores, florists and wine shops for the most enlightened connoisseur. Evanston is a shopper’s paradise with so much to offer. The opportunities are endless, so here are a few can’t-miss spots.

Clothing Stores

Discover the latest in fashion and style at these local clothing boutiques.

Madison Grace

Step into Madison Grace, where contemporary fashion meets chic and approachable style. Catering to women of all ages, this boutique offers a curated selection of clothing that will make you look and feel fabulous.

Stella Boutique

For vibrant and unique clothing, accessories, and home goods, look no further than Stella Boutique. Nestled on Central Street, this hidden gem is a treasure trove waiting to be discovered.

Commonwealth Running Company

Whether you’re a seasoned marathoner or just embarking on a fitness journey, Commonwealth Running Company has you covered. From stylish activewear to comfortable footwear, they have everything you need to stay fashionable and functional during your workouts.

Accents Plus

If you have a classic sense of style, Accents Plus is a must-visit. This boutique offers a curated selection of clothing and accessories that exude sophistication and elegance. Whether you’re looking for timeless pieces or contemporary styles, Accents Plus has something for everyone.


Book lovers have plenty of options when it comes to finding your next favorite story. Check out these bookstores:

Amaranth Books

For over 20 years, Amaranth Books has been assisting the readers of Evanston to find the highest quality books, used and rare books, music, and movies.

Bookends & Beginnings

In June 2014, Bookends & Beginnings opened in downtown Evanston, replacing the iconic Bookman’s Alley. The independent bookstore offers new, used, and bargain books, along with unique gifts and literary events.

Comix Revolution

Carrying books by Noam Chomsky, Howard Zinn, Haruki Murakami, David Sedaris, and more, Comix Revolution offers a wide variety while guaranteeing you’ll find something unexpected and delightful.



Places To Take the Grandchildren

Entertain your grandchildren and create lasting memories at these local spots.

Edgewater Playhouse

Treat your grandchildren to a day of fun and excitement at Edgewater Playhouse. This indoor play center offers a safe and stimulating environment where kids can climb, jump, and explore to their heart’s content.

Cultivate Urban Rainforest & Gallery

Immerse yourself in a world of greenery and art at Cultivate Urban Rainforest & Gallery. Browse through their collection of healthy plants, unique greenery, and visually stunning artworks. Don’t forget to check out their selection of local and handmade pottery and planters, perfect for adding a touch of nature to your home.

Bennison’s Bakery

There’s nothing like enjoying a sweet treat while you’re out with the grandchildren. Visit Bennison’s Bakery, a delicious staple of Evanston since 1938. They have everything from doughnuts and croissants to tarts and pastries – and more.

Odds and Ends

Explore unique and eclectic finds at these local shops specializing in odds and ends.

The Spice House

Elevate your culinary creations with the finest spices, herbs, blends, and extracts from The Spice House. Whether you’re a seasoned chef or an amateur cook, their aromatic essentials will take your dishes to the next level.

Ayla’s Originals

You can find a treasure trove of beads, gemstones, and jewelry at Ayla’s Originals. As one of the top bead stores in the nation, this is the perfect spot if you love to create.

Ten Thousand Villages

From humble beginnings in 1997, the store has grown into one of the largest fair trade stores in the country. Purchases support hundreds of artisans worldwide. Visitors can explore a selection of fair trade treasures and make a difference with every purchase at Ten Thousand Villages.

With these local treasures, Evanston and its surrounding areas offer a diverse shopping experience that caters to every need and preference. Whether you’re in search of fashion-forward clothing, books, engaging activities for the grandchildren, or unique odds and ends, these shops have something for everyone.

Outside view of the Merion

Discover the Perks of Living at The Merion

Residents at The Merion get the best of both worlds. They enjoy being in the heart of Evanston – with unique shops, delicious restaurants, and all kinds of entertainment waiting right at their doorsteps – to The Merion’s vibrant lifestyle and peace of mind from the community’s comforting amenities and services.

Call ​847-250-0667 to schedule a tour of The Merion to learn about our services and amenities, and to see all that Evanston has to offer.