p.o.s.h. chicago

Tableware That Tells a Story

In 1997, P.O.S.H. opened its doors in Chicago, with a desire to offer something unique to the consumer that had grown weary of “sameness”. Our small shop was met with a warm reception as the search for pieces that haven’t been mass-produced for coast–to–coast consumption was shared by many.

“At some point in your life, you want something that feels authentic — something that speaks to you.” That thought is what drives P.O.S.H. to search high and low for the items that stock its shelves — an eclectic assortment of vintage Hotel and Estate Silver, Restaurant China and Dinnerware and an ever–changing mix of European Flea Market Finds. Found in such disparate places as long–shuttered American china warehouses and restaurant supply depots to the antique markets and auction houses of Europe, the items sold at P.O.S.H. are often one–of–a–kind or limited in quantity. From a vintage silverplate Tea Service once used in an English Country Inn to a beautiful Water Pitcher from a Grand Hotel in New York, most of our pieces tell a romantic story of an age gone by.

We hope we have captured some of the uniqueness and personality of P.O.S.H. on our website. If you are ever in Chicago, please stop by and see us! And word to the wise: if you see something you like, it’s best not to wait — it may not be here next time!

Tree Studio History

P.O.S.H. is located in the historic Tree Studio building in downtown Chicago. Commissioned in 1894 by philanthropist and arts patron Judge Lambert Tree and his wife Anna Field Tree (daughter of Marshall Field), the Tree Studios were designed as an artists’ residence and have been home to over 500 artists. Some of the great artists which have called the Tree Studios home include sculptors Albin Polasek and John Storrs; illustrator J. Allen St. John; muralist John Warner Norton; painters Ruth Van Sickle Ford, John Singer Sargent, and Pauline Palmer; and actors Peter Falk and Burgess Meredith.

The nation’s oldest–known artist studios, the Tree Studios were added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1974. Built using the finest craftsmanship and details of the period and centered on a lush garden courtyard, this gorgeous Queen Anne style building is one of the most distinctive features of its River North neighborhood.

 

The Questions We Get Asked!

Q: What does P.O.S.H. stand for?

A: A little known bit of trivia, the word posh actually began as an acronym. It all started at the turn of the last century when there was considerable steamship traffic between England and India. The wealthy passengers would book their cabins on the Port side of the ship going Out of England and on the Starboard side of the ship for the return journey Home.

This kept them safely out of the blistering sun while making the 30–plus day journey into the sweaty climes of the Indian sub–continent. Tickets were stamped P.O.S.H. (for Port Out Starboard Home) and people began using the acronym as a word to describe luxury travel and elegant accommodations.

“Right after the New Year, we’re traveling posh to India.” Go ahead, practice saying that in your best “Queen’s English”!

Q: Is your stuff used?

A: The short answer: yes and no. The long answer: it may have been produced for various hotels, restaurants, and country clubs but has sat unused for years in warehouses gathering dust just waiting for a new home.

The Flea Market Finds are also a mixture of used and unused. Like our china, we often find items that were produced and then never used, sitting warehoused for decades in their original boxes.

Added into the mix are carefully selected new items that we feel complement the vintage pieces. Our homes, after all, are not meant to be museum collections, but rather an interesting and happy combination of both the old and new souvenirs of our journeys through life.

Q: Are all of your products available online?

A: As we find new items we are sure to add them to the site, so come back and visit us online again soon because you never know what finds and updates we have to share! Of course if you are ever in Chicago, please stop in and see us — you’ll find many unique items that, due to their one–of–a–kind nature, are offered only in the store.

Q: I saw an item in your store but can’t find it online — how can I purchase it?

A: Just give us a call or send us an email. If the item is still available, we’ll be more than happy to assist you.

Q: Does P.O.S.H. have a gift registry?

A: At this time we have a gift registry available at our store only. Please give us a call or email us if you’d like more information.

Q: Where do you get your things?

A: Well…we’ve been sworn to secrecy, but since we’re among friends divulging a few tid–bits of information won’t hurt anything, right? Our favorite place right now happens to be redacted. On most occasions, this is where we find all of our redacted. Next, we head to redacted to hit the fleamarkets in search of redacted. And then of course there are always the big auction houses in redacted. Now that you know some of our best kept secrets, you have to promise not to tell anyone else…let’s keep it just between you and me, okay?

 

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