I've read in the retail trade press over the last year or so about problems at Rush Street boutique Jake. I don't go into detail about who says what about whom here, but it's all about money.
About two weeks ago one of our regular tipsters said that she heard that Jake was going to close. But I shy away from rumors, so I didn't do anything with it. A week ago I saw the same claim made on a web site, but again without any sourcing. Now it appears to be true.
One of our camera clan e-mailed this picture this morning. It's nice to see that Jake is using a very classy sign to say "goodbye" rather than just a taped-up piece of paper like we've seen others do.
It's yet another hole in the Oak Street shopping district.
While on the topic of things unconfirmed, there's scuttlebutt that Yves Saint Laurent isn't coming back to Oak Street anytime soon.
We wrote a couple of months ago about YSL closing up shop. At the time, the people at the store said it was just a renovation. Of course, when businesses renovate, they tend not to remove their signage and black-out the windows. Usually there's a helpful "Back in a couple of months!" sign. Not so at YSL where the boutique has even been removed from the company's web site.
Some have said that YSL closed while it looks for a new location. I don't buy it. If you're just moving, then you find a new location first, kit it out, then move. Just like Kate Spade did when it moved from 101 East Oak Street to 56 East Oak Street, or like Hermes is doing right now moving from 110 East Oak Street to the old Barneys New York building at 25 East Oak Street.
It should be noted that YSL recently closed it San Francisco and Madison Avenue, New York stores as well. I'd wager those cities will get replacement YSL boutiques long before Chicago does.