BAPE Opens First Chicago Flagship Store


A BATHING APE’s roots date back to 1993 in the back streets of Harajuku. Young NIGO had just opened the store NOWHERE with his friend Jun Takahashi, and wanted to stock it with his own brand. With help from graphic designer SK8THING, the first batch of APE HEAD tees were screen-printed and put up in the store. This was BAPE’s first entry into the marketplace and introduction to the world.

Three decades later, BAPE is now a globally renowned streetwear brand with over 40 retail locations. Its elevated flagships are strategically placed in culturally-rich creative hubs around the world, with the latest opening in our hometown of Chicago.

BAPE STORE CHICAGO is designed to highlight modern architecture while incorporating both vintage and futuristic design elements throughout. The two-story 5,000 square foot space serves as both a retail store and a modern art exhibit, featuring custom works by Indonesian contemporary artist Arkiv Vilmansa and graffiti artist Josh “Stash” Franklin.

BAPE cites a range of cultural influences for the architectural design of BAPE STORE CHICAGO, from art institutions to luxury automotive design, futuristic films to virtual reality.

As with the brand’s other retail locations around the world, BAPE will offer a unique BAPE STORE CHICAGO camo capsule available exclusively at the Chicago location. The designs are anchored by the red and blue hues featured on the Chicago flag, and also feature a BAPE Theater Sign graphic inspired by Chicago’s iconic theater signage.

To celebrate the opening, BAPE will be tapping Chicago’s rich pool of creatives within the local community, beginning with acclaimed designer and Chicago native Don C as the star of the Chicago camo capsule campaign.

BAPE STORE CHICAGO is now open in Chicago’s Gold Coast neighborhood, located at 113 E Oak Street. Check out photos of the space and Chicago camo capsule campaign starring Don C below.

Store photos shot by Anthony Tahlier:

Product images:


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