Caravan Beads, the sister store in Chicago of Forest Park’s Briolette Beads, enjoyed a steady stream of walk-ins and class attendees on Sunday. And Charlene Steele, owner of both shops, was there thanking people.  At one point, a friend brought Steele a gift bag – sort of a “Sorry your store flooded” offering – with cake and a bottle of wine. Steele said the wine was especially welcome “after my disaster.” 

She wasn’t kidding. 

In an e-mail last week, Briolette Beads let customers know it was closing yet again after a third devastating indoor flood in three weeks. Images of the damage – as a result of which the store’s interior had to be gutted – can be seen on the shop’s blog.

With the walls, floors and the ceiling at the shop at 7322 Madison being torn down, all classes at Briolette have been canceled. At Caravan, which is at 3361 N. Lincoln in Chicago, there was an emergency trunk show this weekend. Proceeds were earmarked for Briolette’s recovery.

At our press deadline, the Review was able to reach Briolette’s owner Charlene Steele for details of the damage. Go to for an updated story.

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