Beth Mueller

My friend Julie is the master at picking out gifts for any occasion. Which is a perfect talent for her, since she owns Virtu, a lovely boutique in Bucktown that specializes in unique, artisanal gifts. One day I was asking Julie to help me find something to give to a client at the end of a project. I wanted to say thank you and leave her with something beautiful that she could use in her new space.

Julie immediately walked to the front of store and handed me a delicate off white ceramic milk bottle that had painted on it a bird’s nest with two robin’s eggs and the words “a new home”.  She then instructed me to fill it with a simple bouquet of flowers.  Perfect, perfect, perfect.  I loved it and so did my client.

You can find Beth Mueller milk bottles with just about any sentiment hand painted on them. Her simple yet elegant vases come in a variety of shapes and sizes, and the price points are very reasonable. They are just as beautiful sitting alone on a desk or shelf as they are in a grouping.  Use them to hold pens, makeup brushes, or flowers. I use one to hold my toothbrush that says “dream” and has the image of a ladder reaching all the way to the moon. I like looking at it before I start my day.

Virtu carries many of these darling vases but each one is a limited quantity so if you are having trouble picking the perfect one, just ask Julie. She’ll help you make the perfect choice, every time. 

Virtu: 2034 North Damen Avenue, Chicago IL 60647 (773) 235-3790 www.virtuchicago.com

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Lexi Nielsen

Lexi is an interior decorator living in Oak Park. Her projects range from simple color consultations to gut rehabs. She fully appreciates that not everyone salivates at the thought of shopping for home...