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Best Local Art Even You Can Afford

By Megan Horst-Hatch

There's nothing quite like displaying unique art, especially if it's by a local artist. From art shops to schools, Chicago is teeming with places to find and buy artwork from a variety of artists, sculptors, jewelers and photographers, often for less than $100. Not only can this artwork be a bargain, but most of the proceeds from the sale go directly to the artist. The following organizations offer artwork for sale from artists who call Chicago home.

(Credit: DIY Trunk Show)

The DIY Trunk Show
Broadway Armory Park
5917 N. Broadway St.
Chicago, IL 60660

Date: November 17 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Price: Jewelry by Additions is under $30; stationery by Steel Petal Press starts at $4; felt animals by Feltmates start at $15

Established in 2003, The DIY Trunk Show is an annual event at Broadway Armory Park that lets vendors show off and sell their wares. A variety of artists are represented by the show including jewelers, photographers, painters and fashion designers. Shoppers can meet with vendors and learn about their products, which can include soaps, candles, accessories for the home and plush toys. Some of the vendors attending the one-day show include Additions, which sells upcycled jewelry, handmade stationery by Mother of Hermes, stationery by Steel Petal Press and felt toys by Feltmates.

Dandy Things
(Credit: Dandy Things' facebook)

Dandy Things
350 Old McHenry Road
Long Grove, IL 60047
(847) 821-1422

Price: Bun crowns by Dragons Wine start at $7; Rice Buddies start at $10

Tucked away in the historic Long Grove shopping center, Dandy Things offers numerous handmade items for sale from local artists ranging from whimsical to functional. Its products include handmade soaps, jewelry and photographs of the Chicagoland area. Established in 2010, the store offers a venue for artists to sell their products without taking time away from producing more art. Rice Buddies are popular among teens, offering a squishy and fun toy complete with emoticons. Other products include jewelry and leather purses by Selena's Unique Boutique and jewelry and bun crowns by Dragons Wine.

Related: Best Art Galleries In Chicago


623 S. Wabash Ave.
Chicago, IL 60605
(312) 369-8616

Price: Most items are under $100

ShopColumbia offers more than just a store to purchase works by local artists. Located in Chicago's South Loop neighborhood, the store is operated by Columbia College Chicago and features original work by the school's artists in a variety of forms including jewelry, mixed media and fashion. According to Shannon Bourne, the store's coordinator, ShopColumbia teaches students how to market and sell their work. "When customers buy artwork, 75 percent of the sale goes right back to the students," Bourne said. The remainder goes to the store's overhead and scholarships for students. ShopColumbia also operates pop-up stores on the school's campus and is planning a holiday market in December, where shoppers can meet the artists. Check the store's Facebook page for further information on locations and upcoming events.

The head banner for Buzz Cafe

Buzz Café
905 S. Lombard Ave.
Oak Park, IL 60304
(708) 524-2899

Price: Artwork available for under $100

While it's known for its selection of organic and fair-trade coffee, Buzz Cafe also sells artwork that is on display. The cafe features art for sale from local artists. Previous artists include paintings by Steve Fisher and artwork rotates based on a first-come, first-served basis. Paintings aren't the only type of art on display. The cafe also features live music. Located in the Oak Park Arts District, Buzz Cafe is steps away from a variety of stores also featuring work from other artists including jewelry, handmade clothes and vintage and reworked items.

Andersonville Galleria

Andersonville Galleria
5247 N. Clark St.
Chicago, IL 60640
(773) 878-8570

Price: $6.50 for Bigfat's Sauce; $29.50 and up for prints by Printed Canvas, and $38.00 for lockets by Deana Rose

The Andersonville Galleria, located in Chicago's Andersonville neighborhood, features more than 90 local artists covering a variety of works, including home design, apparel, food and prints. Some of the products available from local vendors at Andersonville Galleria include hot sauce by Bigfat's, handmade baby clothes by Brite Baby, jewelry by Deana Rose, Inc. and paintings of iconic Chicago locations by Printed Canvas. Andersonville Galleria also organizes monthly events so shoppers can meet the vendors. For more information on upcoming events, check out the gallery's website.

Related: Best Chicago Art Fairs To Attend In June

Megan Horst-Hatch is a mother, runner, baker, gardener, knitter, and other words that end in "-er." She loves nothing more than a great cupcake, and writes at I'm a Trader Joe's Fan. Her work can be found at

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