1. Alcala's Western Wear
When nothing but a boot will do, head straight for Alcala's Western Wear. Yes, you'll also find western wear appropriate for a cattle drive, but past that, this boutique has a truly impressive boot selection. Don't be fooled into thinking you'll only find (really adorable!) cowboy boots here—the store also offers a wide spectrum of motorcycle and lace-up boots, too.
Alcala's,1733 West Chicago Avenue (at Chicago and Hermitage avenues); 312-226-0152.
2. Lori's Shoes
Lori's is a Chicago institution perfect for browsing and meandering any day of the week. If it's stylish, can be buckled, laced-up, or slipped-on, then have no fear—Lori's undoubtedly stocks it. We're especially partial to this shoe haven's gorgeous website, allowing us a little sneak peek before we actually leave the house. It's just the motivation we need to get out and shoe shop in this less-than-awesome April weather. Lori's, 824 West Armitage (at Dayton Street); 773-281-5655.
You can thank us now, because as soon as you walk in the door, you'll no doubt be awestruck by Sarca's equally impressive clothing selection. This shop is known for an expansive selection of stunning, exclusive-to-Chicago shoes that will tug at your heart's shoestrings. With your favorite brands like House of Harlow, Vivienne Westwood, and Tania Spinelli, you'll be pondering whether to focus on the shoes or the clothes...that is the question. Sarca, 710 North Wabash Street (at Huron Street); 312-255-0900.
Sometimes a boutique is just as famous for its service as it is for style. Pump falls into this rare yet priceless category. An excellent resource when your feet could use a little special occasion sprucing, because the staff at Pump are ready and able to fit you with the perfect accessory. Bring a pal with you and spread the love around. Adorable shoes are best enjoyed—you guessed it—in pairs.
Pump, 1659 West Division Street (at Division and Paulina streets).
5. Akira Shoes
Chicago shoe-savvy readers knew they'd never get through this list without spotting Akira Shoes. We adore this boutique because we love options. And with a selection like Akira's, every budget, style, occasion, and mood imaginable is catered to. Along with Lori's, Akira Shoes has impressive online options for scooping up new finds when you can't bear shopping in the cold. If you're still on the fence about spring trends (hello, flatforms), Akria Shoes can help you work things out.
Akira Shoes, 668 West Diversey Parkway (at Clark Street); 773-327-1040.