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Family-Owned Business Brings Mexico to the Mag Mile | Latino Voices | Chicago News


Nestled in Chicago’s ritziest purchasing district, Colores Mexicanos presents an expertise a world away from its retail neighbors. 

“All the pieces right here has part of the power, of the center and the soul of the individuals who made it,” stated co-owner Erika Espinosa Cruz. 

Customers stepping contained in the Michigan Avenue retailer are swiftly transported from busy city streets right into a vibrant Mexican road market bursting with handcrafted items. 

“Something they select to take house from this retailer is not only a product,” stated co-owner Gabriel Neely-Streit. “Within the nice majority of circumstances there are quite a few generations behind these explicit crafts. Individuals have discovered their craft from their grandmothers, their nice grandmothers and so forth.” 

Colores Mexicanos received its begin 5 years in the past within the Belmont Cragin neighborhood, the place sisters Erika Espinosa Cruz and Leti Espinosa together with household buddy and enterprise associate Gabriel Neely-Streit started promoting Mexican artisan objects at neighborhood markets and even within the Espinosa yard. 

Espinosa Cruz stated the enterprise started when her household began accumulating artisan objects on household journeys to Mexico. 

“We began to know that every group, all throughout the nation, has totally different type of works. So we began simply shopping for them for our household assortment,” she stated. “Then when individuals got here to our home they’d say ‘oh that is very, very lovely,’ our family and friends, and we began to promote these issues to them.” 

The Espinosa sisters and Neely-Streit had constructed a thriving small enterprise once they discovered the town was looking for cultural distributors to arrange store on the Riverwalk. Colores Mexicanos nabbed a coveted spot there final summer time, and Espinosa Cruz says the nice and cozy response they obtained impressed them to strategy the town with an much more bold proposal. 

“Throughout the pandemic, we realized that numerous areas right here in Michigan Avenue [were] closed,” stated Espinosa Cruz. 

With the assistance of the town’s Division of Enterprise Affairs and Client Safety and The Magnificent Mile Affiliation, they struck a deal to separate the lease on the previous Roots Canada house at 605 N. Michigan Avenue by means of the vacation season. With assist from their households, the house owners remodeled the house in simply three days to open in time for Black Friday. 

“When individuals come into the shop, they really feel very totally different vibes. They are saying on a regular basis that they really feel pleased and like they’re in one other place very distant from Chicago,” stated Espinosa Cruz. “One of many advantages of this house, as a result of they put these lovely lights and home windows, is we are able to present extra concerning the range of our tradition.” 

“It was an opportunity for a very small enterprise to current itself professionally downtown,” added Neely-Streit.

Although the popup was initially scheduled to finish after the vacations, Colores Mexicanos’ success led them to increase their keep. Now, the house owners are hoping they’ll make their Magazine Mile house a ceaselessly house. 

“We might be so, so pleased if this retailer may keep downtown as a result of particularly for Erika and Leti, this is a chance to stay linked to their tradition,” stated Neely-Streit. 

“One among our needs now’s simply to proceed to share these lovely issues with the world, with our group, and different communities,” stated Espinosa Cruz. “We perceive that for Michigan Avenue we’re very totally different. We aren’t the standard retailer that may be discovered right here. However that’s the level — we’re extra proud now as a result of our tradition deserves to be right here.”




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