Behind the Gems - Q&A

Behind the Gems - Q&A

Behind the Gems - Q&A

Where were you born and raised? What’s your family like?


I’m from Bannockburn, Illinois [which is basically inside of Deerfield]. For non-Chicagoans, Bannockburn is a suburb roughly 40 minutes northwest of downtown Chicago. 

My family is incredibly special. I'm the youngest of 3 kids. My brother, Noah, is three years older and my sister Jen and I are five years apart. Our father, Izzy, is certainly the center of our family. He's Moroccan Israeli and a character to say the least. My mom, Cindy, is the calmest, most centered person I know. She’s the glue of the family. 

What do you love most about Chicago? 

I love the people in Chicago and the down-to-earth ease of this city. And there’s nothing like summer in Chicago. I guess we live 10 for 2 (like they say for summer camp). You deal with 10 months of bad weather for 2 months of perfection. Summers here mean eating/drinking (and really just living) on roof decks and patios daily.

Is there an activity/routine or place in Chicago that inspires your creative process? 

Everything inspires me! People, architecture, textiles, etc.. I especially love our skyline, it's so unique and beautiful. 

What are your top 3 hidden (or not so hidden) gems in Chicago?

I've been shopping at P45 since I was a kid. I remember a Homecoming outfit that was 100% from P45. I mixed prints + patterns and thought I was the coolest. I love that the store takes me out of my comfort zone. 

I love Space519 because their food, homeware, clothes and beauty products are all so special and off the beaten path. 

As much as I love the city, sometimes I need a break. My husband created a special place in southwest Michigan called The Neighborhood Hotel Grand Beach. It’s only 90 minutes from downtown Chicago but feels like you’re a million miles away. It’s the best place to completely unwind in nature (very much my speed - with cushy beds, good design and air conditioning). We go for the quiet/stillness or to explore and celebrate time with family/friends! Our kids love it — they become nature women and basically run wild with their friends, get dirt under their nails, etc.. 

What does your ideal vacation look like? 

It’s somewhere warm with a great pool (not the beach) + my husband and kids. Other requirements: tasty cocktails, good books and relaxation! 

‌Have more questions? Feel free to DM me on Instagram! @danarebecca 

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