An e-zine for happenings of local culture in Milwaukee and elsewhere


‘Tis Gift Season, Last Minute Shop Local


The holiday gift buying crunch time has arrived with well timed seasonal snow and ice, but don’t let that stop you. If you haven’t wrapped all your gifts yet, there are some great local shopping options worthy of a browse. One of a kind clothing, accessories, and art make great gifts, lets face it everyone likes custom.

This weekend shops are popping up and store front proprietors will have their doors to greet you. If you prefer online, most of these local options can accommodate e-commerce as well.

Last Minute Shopping List Part 1

Zen Dragonfly, Last Ditch Effort,
Handmade clothing and accessories by fashion house Zen Dragonfly, and hosting mini-craft fair Last Ditch Effort in Sherman Park Saturday, December 21, 2013 at 12p.

Madam Chino’s Look Nook,
Madam Chino fashion house feature vintage and handmade fashion and accessories, pop up shop is open Saturday, December 21, 2013 at 12p.

Roots Underground Outfitters, Nice Gear,
Urban fashion retailer Roots has custom fashion designs and independent brands from across the nation, their store is open regular business hours in Washington Heights.

Milrawkee Alt, Bubbler Studios,
Prepare for fun, Milrawkee Alt has original Milwaukee themed art and gifts of all types, perfect for the MKE junky with a love for funky stuff to put on their walls, located in Bay View’s Hide House.


‘Tis Gift Season, Buy Local Fashion, Madam Chino’s

Many clothing items leave a first impression that they probably came straight from a major retailer, or worse yet a department store. I actually have a phobia of being seen in an item of clothing that has an immediately recognizable origin. Local maker Vanessa Andrew’s alter-ego Madam Chino will cure that ailment when you stop by the Look Nook on 100A E. Pleasant Street.

A treasure trove of handmade accessories and clothing, the Look Nook also has an extremely forward and very gently worn vintage clothing and shoe selection. Madam Chino is one of the contributors of Hovercraftadding to her resume of impeccable taste for quality hand tailored and curated found items.

The Look Nook will have an exclusive pop-up shop open Saturday, December 21, 2013 from 12:00p – 6:00p. Take a gaze at the Madam Chino Look Nook page for details on how to attend the shop opening.


Delia Sophia Cutting Boards, Art vs Craft 2011

Kitchens are for cutting tasty eats. I asked personally if you could cut meat on Delia Sophia’s Handmade Cutting Boards and the answer is yes. Just make sure you clean it thoroughly like anything else worthy of thorough cleaning.

Click pict for more from Delia…

Why @LocalTrolley Checked-Out:
Art vs Craft 2011, MSOE Wehr Center
Kristopher Pollard Illustrations and Portraits
Megan Lee Designs
Delia Sophia’s Handmade Cutting Boards
Speakeasy Pens and Gifts
Bureau of Print Research and Design
Just Seeds

Speakeasy Pens and Gifts, Art vs Craft 2011

Pretty soon we won’t need hands anymore. I mean literal evolution of the one finger lemon hand, only used to swipe touch-sensitive cellphone screens. Until then learn to write cursive, or sip a bottle of wine slowly learning cursive.

Speakeasy Pens and Gifts had a very nice selection of handmade pens and wine stoppers. They even have a store check it out (be careful the website is like a labyrinth trapped in a maze)! Oh, aren’t you lucky Speakeasy products are available at The Brass Rooster.

Click the Pict to go to Speakeasy on the web…

Why @LocalTrolley Checked-Out:
Art vs Craft 2011, MSOE Wehr Center
Kristopher Pollard Illustrations and Portraits
Megan Lee Designs
Delia Sophia’s Handmade Cutting Boards
Speakeasy Pens and Gifts
Bureau of Print Research and Design
Just Seeds

Seize the Moment, The Brass Rooster

Milwaukee has a knack for growing inspired efforts. The Brass Rooster leaped out of no where this past Spring, to become a prime example of resurgent artisan crafts fusing with entrepreneurial pursuits. At The Brass Rooster hats are not just sold, but blocked, shaped, and re-banded. Crafting dreams happens the same way, if you want them to come true.

Milliners by trade, wait… that’s right milliners. Most occupations have an obscure species name and milliner fills that vocabulary niche for the venerable hat-maker. The Brass Rooster’s proprietors team-up as two of Milwaukee’s most stylish artisans. Their vision of a vintage accessory shop geared toward men, defies fashion limitations set by uni-fit retail brands and the pervasive Euro-aesthetic seeping back into American menswear clothing pallets. Even so, The Brass Rooster still seduces pop-styles readily.

We Did it Anyway, Karen Erbach

Chances Down

The good folks at The Brass Rooster must have known something everyone else didn’t, or just relied on a personal philosophy allowing for passion’s precedence over fear of failure. Journeywoman writer and filmmaker Karen Erbach recently captured a snapshot of The Brass Rooster’s story for a video competition, sponsored by Chevrolet, that lead up to the New Horizons International Film Festival. Aptly named We Did it Anyway, Erbach succinctly profiles the shop from firmament to foundation.

On August 3, The Brass Rooster announced a new selection of hats. To take a look at the latest visit 2479 S. Kinnickinnic Avenue.

Related Posts
Eerie Americana, John McLaughlin and The Rogues
MKE Molecules, WMSE Buy Local Bazaar