Chinoiserie in Chi(na)town

Chicago fashion and lifestyle blogger Jessica Sturdy styling a green floral dress with a tie at the bust.

THIS MURAL! Can we talk about it for a second?! I find it to be absolutely stunning, even more so in person. It was the happiest of accidents that Melissa and I stumbled upon it last week. Melissa recently moved down to the South Loop so when we were meeting up to shoot a few outfits, I said, “Let me pick you up!” I was feeling a bit uninspired with all of our usual go-to’s in my stomping grounds, so I thought it would be fun to explore a new-to-me area. Ping Tom Park isn’t too far from her place and neither of us had been, but she knew it had great skyline views. Sold! As we were walking up (and believe me, it’s a bit of a walk because there isn’t much nearby parking), I spotted this beautiful blue and white mural and literally gasped. Coincidentally, I had *just* watched Jenn‘s post about the mural being painted on her Instagram stories a few days prior. She hadn’t released the location info yet, but I had made a mental note to track it down in a few weeks.  (Side note: Jenn is the best resource for all things street art in Chicago. Check out her wall guide here!)

Popular Chicago blogger Jessica Sturdy taking photos in front of a blue and white mural in Chinatown.

It just so happened that the dress I was wearing paired perfectly with the colors of the wall and the Asian-inspired print. And the metallic accents in the mural with my silver shoes? The happiest of accidents… I honestly couldn’t have planned it better if I tried.

Fashion and lifestyle Jessica Sturdy wearing a green, blue, and white floral dress with a white wicker clutch for a summer wedding.

Chicago personal stylist Jessica Sturdy wearing a green floral midi dress in front of a blue and white chinoiserie mural in Chinatown in Chicago.

Jessica Sturdy wearing blue tassel earrings from BaubleBar.

If (like me) you’re not that familiar with Chinatown, here’s what you need to do for your next weekend outing or date night! Ride the Water Taxi down to Ping Tom Park (it drops off right  in the park!)… The skyline looks stunning from there, and there are even REI canoes that you can take out into the river if you’re feeling outdoorsy. You can see west from the park without much obstruction, so I’m sure it’s a great spot to take in the sunset! (Smuggle in a few cans of wine with you and take it all in.) And then when you need to grab a bite to eat, head to Qing Xiang Yuan Dumplings nearby. OH EM GEE, some of the best dumplings I’ve had! After I had dropped Melissa back home after our photo session, I was absolutely famished and literally googled “best food chinatown.” 😂 QXY Dumplings was one of the first listings to come up and one of the reviews said it was a good spot to eat lunch alone. Sold! It ended up being the most delicious lunch, and I cannot wait to go back again soon with friends. It’s a quick Uber or Lyft from the park!

Oh, and if you do make it down to the park, take a picture of the final finished mural for me! The artists were still there working on it when we saw it. (And so politely moved their blankets and cans for us to get a wide shot without us even asking! 🙏🏼)

Jessica Sturdy wearing a green, white, and blue floral printed midi dress with Marc Fisher silver ankle-strap pumps.

Jessica Sturdy wearing a pair of cobalt blue BaubleBar earrings with a green and blue floral dress.

Chicago lifestyle blogger Jessica Sturdy styling a green midi length dress with silver ankle-strap heels.

Okay, now let’s talk about this dress. I wore it a few weeks back in What I Wore Last Week, but it’s so pretty that it deserved a dedicated post of it’s own. The colors are even more gorgeous in person, and I absolutely love the front tie situation. It’s cute with a denim jacket over the top, and I even think it would be cute with a pair of white sneakers on the weekend. (Plus, you can obviously dress it up for work with heels and a cropped blazer or jacket!)

Bows & Sequins taking an Instagram photo of the chinoiserie mural in Ping Tom Park in Chicago.

But a quick note on sizing! See the back and the stretchy, ruched detailing? I would definitely size down in this dress if you’re in between sizes or have a smaller chest. I typically wear a 6 in Eliza J dresses, but I wish I would have gotten the 4 in this one instead. (So if you do need a 6, keep an eye on my Poshmark because I’ll be listing this one sometime this week.) I’m so sad to let it go, but it’s simply too big on top when I don’t have a jacket over it.

Jessica Sturdy, fashion and beauty blogger based in Chicago, wearing a green floral fit and flare midi dress.

Get the Look…

Eliza J Green Floral Dress c/o
Marc Fisher Silver Ankle-Strap Heels (40% off!)
Vineyard Vines White Wicker Clutch (old; similar here & here)
BaubleBar Blue Tassel Earrings (old; similar herehere & here)

Top Chicago blogger Jessica Sturdy wearing a green floral dress with silver pumps.

Chicago blogger Jessica Sturdy styling an Eliza J green floral dress exclusively at Nordstrom.

Jessica Sturdy wearing a pair of BaubleBar tassel earrings with a green floral dress.

Chicago travel blogger Jessica Sturdy wearing a green floral dress in front of the Asian-inspired blue and white chinoiserie mural at Tom Ping Park in Chinatown, Chicago.

Bows & Sequins wearing a pair of Marc Fisher silver ankle-strap heels.

Chicago fashion blogger Bows & Sequins styling a green floral dress.

Bows & Sequins wearing a set of blue tassel earrings.

Chicago blogger Jessica Sturdy styling a green floral dress from Nordstrom with silver pumps and a white wicker clutch.

Chicago lifestyle and fashion influencer Jessica Sturdy wearing a green floral dress in front of a blue and white street art mural at Ping Tom Park.

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  1. 6.27.18
    Rena said:

    So in love with your perfect green dress!
    xx Rena

  2. 6.27.18
    Rach said:

    This mural was a great find Jess! I definitely want to check it out and I’ll report back if its finished!

  3. 6.28.18
    Natali said:

    That is such a cute, retro chic dress and it suits you perfectly!

  4. 7.30.18
    Jenn Lake said:

    I totally missed this post – so thrilled it popped up in my Twitter feed! Thank you so much for your sweet shoutout, lady! Have a lovely week ahead!