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Modern Cooperative, Comet Vintage Becoming Fixtures on 18th Street

By Chloe Riley | May 10, 2013 7:53am
 Vintage furniture and clothing abound at Modern Cooperative and Comet Vintage in Pilsen, which are both celebrating anniversaries.
Modern Co-op and Comet Vintage's Anniversaries
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PILSEN — Two relative newcomers to the vintage world on 18th Street are celebrating significant milestones Friday.

It’s the one-year anniversary for Modern Cooperative, and the two-year anniversary for Comet Vintage.

The two shops are celebrating at Pilsen Second Fridays — a night of ‘hood strolling, wine sipping and art looking where many Pilsen shops stay open from 6 p.m. until midnight.

Modern Cooperative, named Time Out Chicago’s “Best New Home Shop” last year, came into existence after co-owner Tiffany Paige said adios to her corporate life in New York.

“I really missed Chicago, I really missed the community feel of Pilsen,” said Paige, who co-owns the shop with her boyfriend, Mike Biersma. 

With originally more of a vintage furniture focus, the shop at 818 W. 18th St. now has more reclaimed pieces and art from Pilsen artists like woodworker Gustav Reyes and painter Emmy Star Brown.

Paige and the other area vintage shops also started a neighborhood collective in February called Vintage on 18th.

“It’s a natural thing for us because we all are very friendly with each other,” Comet co-owner Jamie Roelofs said of the Pilsen vintage shop owners.

Two years ago, Roelofs and Comet business partner Jennifer Thomas were two frustrated workers at another Chicago vintage shop.

“We were like, 'It’s not that crazy, let’s just open a store. Let’s just take this idea and run with it,'” Roelofs said.

Within two months, the two friends were in their space at 1320 W. 18th St.

Both ladies live in Pilsen and, Roelofs said, with cheaper rent comes cocktail dresses for $40 or $50 versus the $80 to $100 range you run into in Wicker Park.

On Friday, Mexican food truck La Adelita will be parked outside Comet Vintage, and 5411 Empanadas will be serving up fried goodness at Modern Cooperative. 

Modern Co-op will also have live music by Jenny Dragon, sweet treats from Puffs of Doom, and a new furniture collection from MODified Originals. Hit Comet up for some photo booth action, beer from Revolution Brewery and discounts of 20 to 50 percent off store items.