{Re-Cap} ICMB and Downtown Iowa City’s Shop Crawl!

Let’s just start by saying this:  we had SO MUCH FUN at this event!  Special thanks to Iowa City Downtown District for co-hosting our first ever “shop crawl”, and for providing each of our guests with a handy dandy (and super cute!) map of the downtown district, as well as a Holiday Giving Book for everyone.  What a nice extra treat!  If you are new to the area (or if you don’t make it downtown as much as you’d like to), be sure to follow ICDD on Facebook and stay up-to-date with everything that’s going on in this amazing city of ours!  Speaking of downtown, let’s check out that list of all of the AMAZING stores that welcomed us into their shops {with snacks! and discounts!} for this super-fun evening:

shop crawl thanks

LRP_0575We started our evening at Tailgate, and what a great place to start!  Playing on the word “bar crawl”, what better place to start a “shop crawl” than a store FULL of Hawkeye gear?!  If you haven’t visited this new shop, right in the heart of downtown Iowa City, you need to make a plan to go today. Tailgate’s Hawkeye gear is one-of-a-kind, and the moms on our crawl were practically drooling over the adorable choices for our littlest Hawkeye fans!  (I mean, a V-neck t-shirt for my two year old? How could I say no?!) To check out all of Tailgate’s awesome stuff, and stay up to date with the latest sales and happenings in the store, visit them on Facebook here, and give them a “like” while you’re there!

Next up:  Raygun.  Another amazing store for all of us Iowa-lovers, whether you were born here or if you came and never left (hence the “Iowa captive” shirts they have!).  The best part about our stop at Raygun was hearing all of the laughter from the moms as they walked up and down the aisles and read the hilarious t-shirts, coffee mugs, postcards, etc.  If you are looking for a fun, original Christmas gift, look no further. And they also have a kids section, too!  Follow Raygun on Facebook here, and tell them the Iowa City Moms Blog sent you!

After Raygun, we headed next door to nori.  Oh, how we love nori!  Two stories of ah-mazing outfits for any occasion, and such an inviting atmosphere! Stevie (owner) is a mommy herself, so she completely understands us mommy-shoppers as we come into the store, all excited to be kid-less and more-than-willing to accept help on putting together an outfit!  The girls at nori are super helpful and super friendly, and honestly the sweaters…oh my gosh, the sweaters at nori are the softest thing ever!  Be sure to follow them on Instagram { @nori_fashioniowacity } to stay up-to-date with their newest inventory!

LRP_0683Next stop: Revival.  For those of us who went to college in Iowa City, Revival has always been a favorite.  With racks and racks of new and gently-used items, we could have spent hours in there browsing the goods!  In addition to clothes, Revival has a wide variety of accessories, and their fleece-lined leggings are a must in these Iowa winters.  They are also another great place to follow on Instagram (although you can’t blame us if you have to drive downtown every time you sign on to Instagram!). Find them at @revivaliowacity.

Another new spot in the downtown area, Sicily Boutique was the next shop on the crawl.  We were welcomed with extra-fancy snacks at this beautiful location, and we recommend you stop in and welcome Sicily to the downtown community!  Sicily Boutique is an international online fashion store with a variety of women’s and men’s clothing for retail, wholesale and drop ship customers, and don’t we all love it when these online sensations set up a brick-and-mortar in our town?!  Make a visit sometime soon, and tell them ICMB sent you!

Textiles, another downtown staple, was next.  Again, if you went to the U of I, you probably shopped at Textiles a time or two (or every day after class…).  With a huge selection of women’s clothing, this is another place where we could get seriously distracted and lose track of time!  The dressing rooms were full and the ladies were walking around with arms full of goodies at Textiles that night!  Be sure to follow them on Facebook for the latest, and give them a “like” while you’re there!

Up next:  The French Connection.  Catherine (owner of Catherine’s) has brought this amazing store to downtown Iowa City, and we couldn’t be happier.  And the best part?  They have mens and womens clothing, so while you are shopping for yourself, you can also knock a couple of those hard-to-buy-for men off of your gift list too!  The moms on our shop crawl were loving The French Connection, and we can’t wait to go back!

LRP_0762A chilly little walk down the road to our next stop, Dulcinea, but we were welcomed with smiles and spiked cider, so it was all good!  After all, what would downtown Iowa City be without that mural on the wall outside Dulcinea, right?!  In addition to beautiful clothing and accessories, Dulcinea also has some adorable housewares/gift items, and we really love the open sitting area where we can sit and chat while our friends try on clothes.  The atmosphere is relaxed and inviting, and it really is a great place to go with friends to chat, try on clothes, and put together an outfit.  Stop in the next time you’re downtown, and tell them your friends at the Iowa City Moms Blog said hi!

Across the street to Catherine’s next, and the oohs and ahhs began before we even entered the store, as the moms saw the bay window full of cashmere socks. Seriously!  Between the socks, and the fleece leggings, and the uber-soft sweaters, Catherine’s is somewhere you need to stop before the temperatures drop below zero and we are stuck inside for the months of January and February.  Some other favorites at Catherine’s that evening included the jewelry counter, and the delicious-smelling candles.  Stop in quick next week if you’re looking for last-minute stocking stuffers!  {Follow them on Facebook and give them a “like” too!}

Last but certainly not least, the shopping part of our trip took us to Beadology.  If you haven’t been in yet, now’s the time!  During these cold winter months, why not make a date with some girlfriends and go to Beadology to make some jewelry?  In these Pinterest-filled days, we all have great ideas for DIY projects, but the problem seems to be the follow-through.  Look no further, because Beadology makes it easy for you!  They have all the supplies (which means tables and tables full of beads!) and they are there to help you put together your own unique pieces.  Not feeling creative enough to do it on your own? They also offer classes, too!  What a fun thing to do with some friends!  Follow them on Facebook for more details on classes and upcoming events.


And then, after we had shopped until we nearly dropped, it was time for treats!  We made the quick trip across the street to The Java House for hot drinks and pastries.  What a beautiful spread!  And what a great way to end the evening, hanging out and  chatting with friends in one of Iowa City’s absolute favorite coffee shops.  Be sure to follow Java House on Facebook for more info on all of their locations and where you can enjoy their coffee with friends.

We could NOT have asked for a better shop crawl experience, and we want to say THANK YOU to all of the shops mentioned here, as well as the Iowa City Downtown District for co-hosting the event with us.  These moms had SO much fun enjoying the downtown area, and for many of them who are new to the area, this was their first time shopping at these amazing spots that our city has to offer!

Another big thanks to Dana from LiteRite Photography for joining us on the crawl and taking photos of the event.  Watch the ICMB Facebook page for more photos from the evening soon!





Sara and her husband Matt (sweethearts since they were just 16) got married in 2007, and since then have welcomed four beautiful children (Sam in 2008, Cooper in 2010, Nora in 2012, and Adam James in December 2015). A born-and-raised Iowan, Sara received both her Bachelor's and Master's Degrees (in Spanish Literature) from the University of Iowa. She's still teaching Spanish wherever and whenever she can, but her true passion is owning Iowa City Moms and building this community alongside her amazing team. Sara is also the Community Engagement Coordinator for City Mom Collective, and the owner of Cowork Collective downtown Iowa City. Common denominator in all of these jobs: community, community, community.


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