Stylish Solutions for Cold Hands in the Windy City

Feather & Tartan Ribbon Tied Around Tribu Leat...

Image by Emilie Smith via Flickr

Everyone needs a pair of leather gloves, even if you use them solely as “driving gloves” or for typing on your keyboard because the heat sucks in your apartment. Leather gloves are sleek and sophisticated and can jazz up any ol’ boring outfit. I have found that with leather gloves I am still able to operate my fancy phone and take things out of my wallet, tasks that become trickier with thicker, fuzzier gloves. I personally own more than a dozen leather hand protectors, but I realize not everyone is a glove freak or idealizes Rogue like I do, so I am just going to recommend owning 2 pairs. You want at least one set of shorter length gloves for driving or running errands and one set of longer gloves to go with a holiday dress.  Oh, and gentlemen, these make great Christmas gifts! (wink, wink)

For those willing to invest in a set of genuine Italian leather gloves (they last for years), you’re in luck. Semoneta Gloves recently set up shop in Chicago, at 900 N Michigan Ave.  Semoneta Gloves is a 50 year old Italian-based leather glove company that makes gorgeous gloves in “a multitude of colors and shades, both brilliant and avant-garde“. How can gloves be brilliant and avant-garde, you might ask? Look at these silk- lined green kid gloves with asymmetrical buttons, or these “driving gloves“. Like polka dots? You’re in luck. Want something a bit more demure? I don’t know about you, but these are gloves I can dream about.  (Don’t worry gentlemen, Semoneta also makes beautiful leather gloves for you too.)

For something on the cheaper side, there’s Glove Me Tender (and their new fleece i-phone glove) also in the 900 shops, and  H &M consistantly sells stylish leather gloves. One of my favorite pairs is actually from H & M; turquoise suede with white polka dots, a ruffled collar, and a tiny white leather bow on the wrist. Not to trash-talk my favorite gloves, but because of their suede nature, they’ve gotten dirty, quickly, and constant dry cleaning is a pain.

If you’re on a budget and want something vintage, I’ve found nice leather gloves at both the Edgewater Antique Mall and the Broadway Antique Mall. Local thrift,  Salvation Army and Village Discount stores have yielded satisfactory results if you can handle stains or feel up to the task of fortifying seams, but I will admit, sometimes I want a glove that no hand has been in before.

The wholesale shops that line Clark, from Wilson to Sunnyside, are also a great place to find “leather” gloves (for those not into wearing another animal’s skin) and because of their synthetic nature, the gloves tend to be below $10 and not very warm. These wholesale shops also sell any and every accessory, making for some easy Christmas gifts.

Oh, and here’s a friendly tip: DO NOT order leather gloves online, even if you’re sure of your size. You need to try those gloves on, wiggle your fingers, pretend you’re going to punch someone. You also want to make sure the gloves aren’t perfectly tight around your fingers so you can still wear a ring or two. Here is some info on taking care of your gloves so they keep looking like new, and here’s a piece discussing the importance of stitching.

So go out there, and buy some leather gloves! You’ll love the way your hands look in them. Happy Hunting!


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