Greeting a visitor to the Green Parasol are one giant, fake tree with leaves cut out of sheet music, and a curtain of paper hanging down from the ceiling. Public radio plays, as opposed to easy listening, and not one item in the women's boutique has been featured in Us Weekly. Buyer, beware, this is no trip to West Towne - but rather a traditional (and experiential) shopping oasis.
Like any true boutique in the vein of shops in New York, Paris, and London, the newly opened Green Parasol on Williamson Street carries only a few of each piece, so the emphasis is on variety as opposed to quantity. All of the labels are U.S.-based - save for a striking Parisian line called Sunlight Designs. Using a monochrome palate, Sunlight Designs has created a beautiful collection of crepe skirts and tops, as well as a below-the-knee dress ($375) that immediately caught my eye.
Other labels in the store include knitwear by Kaoru Izushi (whose maker lives right down the block from the store), linen clothing by Cynthia Ashby (based out of Chicago), plus co-owners Susan Otterson's knitwear and Laurie Rossbach's Darcy Sparrow "wearable art" clothing. Vintage aprons, hairpins and umbrellas abound ($18-$30 on average), and mixed-media art by New Yorker Danielle Despan lines the wall.
If you're looking to join the mainstream, this may not be your place. But if you're looking to make a statement, the items in Green Parasol have plenty to say.