Find Luxury Street Fashion in Chicago

RSVP Gallery offers exclusive, rare merchandise

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    NEWSLETTERS

    A Wicker Park/Bucktown store offers a vast array of unique, artistic pop culture merchandise for a clientele that stretches across the world. (Published Monday, Apr 12, 2010)

    It's easy to miss it driving down Damen, but a Wicker Park/Bucktown retail store is quickly becoming Ground Zero for people all over the world looking for eclectic pop culture goods.

    RSVP Gallery specializes in eye-popping luxury-based merchandise that pay homage to the street art and fashion scene that has exploded over the past few years.

    That means anything from a Kanye West/Nike collabo to a funky Kermit the Frog skateboard designed by renowned photographer Terry Richardson.

    "Most of the products we carry are from artists who've created a profile that has allowed them to work with larger companies. They're made in lower quantities, which means they're a little harder to find," says Marc Moran, one of three partners in the store that also includes designer Virgil Abloh and Kanye tour manager Don Crawley.

    The rare nature of the goods means long lines for certain product releases -- an advantage for Chicago aficionados, because even though the store boasts a worldwide clientele who crave these unique items, you get first crack by going to the store itself.

    "We don't bring in products to see how many we can sell for our business," Moran says. "We are a business and need to make money, but it's more about promoting the art and the culture that revolves around the art community in Chicago and beyond."

    Which means a visit to RSVP can easily turn into an event, like a recent in-store meet-and-greet session with Big Sean, the newest rapper signed to Kanye's G.O.O.D. music label.

    And as if they couldn't get more exclusive, RSVP recently collaborated with Japanese designer Verbal to create two limited edition versions of the popular POW! necklaces, a matte black and glow-in-the-dark version.

    "It may sound like too much consumerism at its finest, but the way these products come to be, you're buying a piece of art. It's wearable art where an artist or a skateboarder can create this design and create limited quantities of it that you can then purchase and be one of few people in the world to own," Moran says.

    RSVP Gallery, 1753 N Damen Ave., 773.770.6666