Every summer, from Memorial Day to Labor Day, for the past five years Ariane Prewitt leaves her Chicago home to open AP, her namesake shop on the shores of Lake Michigan. AP is filled with clothing and accessories from emerging contemporary designers, textiles, apothecary and home goods. Several years ago Ariane had a shop, ABN, in Chicago, which focused on Mid-Century design. From there she was recruited by Barney’s New York to be the Chicago store’s visual manager, which led to her working for Henry Beguelin. These experiences evolved Ariane’s appreciation of beautifully made clothing and accessories, a preference for handmade and unique items, all of which is apparent in her shop. For AP she works with designers who create small collections and individual pieces. She loves textiles and has an interesting collection from far-flung places, including items from a family in Teotitlan who cultivate silk worms and weave the fabric before making scarves and shawls, a process that can take more than six months. There is an assortment of both antique and new textiles and garments from Japan, Guatemala, Mexico and India. Her customers span all age groups, most of which are travelers or aspiring travelers, who appreciate the wanderlust Ariane has woven throughout AP. Ariane is thrilled when a customer makes a pilgrimage to her shop, which she regards as the highest compliment. Artisan markets, where she shops for well-made handmade goods, inspire her, and so does Egg in London, a shop that she has long admired. When Ariane closes AP in September she returns to Chicago and her other career, as a professor of visual merchandising at Columbia College. The months away from AP and Lakeside are spent researching and sourcing for the next season’s unique assortment. The long winter breaks afford her the opportunity to travel to various destinations on buying trips, the next being to Mexico to design and manufacture a line of shoes for next summer.
14391 Lakeside Road, Lakeside MI