I started working at The Alley when I was eight years old. When I tell people that; they’re all like “whaaa- how is that even legal?” and then I tell that my dad owns the business and it all makes so much sense.
Here’s a picture of my sister and I as babies, back in the day:
From eight up until 21 I worked at one of the Alley stores as a clerk, manager, buyer, t-shirt maker, shoplifter-catcher… I’ve seen some crazy things and was even able to publish an article that explained what it was like growing up at Belmont and Clark titled “Rebel Rebel my dad owns the Alley so what?” Source: http://newcity.com/2009/04/21/rebel-rebel-my-dad-owns-the-alley-so-what
And then, I quit. I never had plans to own The Alley and continue on the legacy. I wanted to make my own legacy. When I graduated from college I became a high school teacher and moved away from Chicago to Oklahoma City. During my time there I met a pretty awesome dude, married him and brought him back to Chicago.
Above: David and I at our wedding reception in Chicago. At the party I got to see many old Alley employees that knew me when I was in diapers
That’s when everything kind of changed for me. When I came back I saw how much the neighborhood changed. Punkin’ Donuts, where I at one time had a lemonade stand, is about the be demolished. There are empty store fronts on Clark Street. Yet, with all of this change; The Alley is still there. People still drive into town and visit The Alley. Inside the store it’s booming and bringing comfort to a new generation of rebells looking for edgy fashion that separates them from the sheep of society.
I knew I had to get back into the business. This store is in my blood. So here I am. Seven years later, I am back and ready to continue the Alley legacy of rebellion, edgy fashion, and community.
Wanna talk about rock and roll? Have a special item you think The Alley should carry? Want to collaborate with the store?
Feel free to contact me at my new, official email: firstname.lastname@example.org