Nayab Bolbolan, daughter of the owner of High Touch boutique, 1515 Sherman Ave. Credit: Susy Schultz

If you are thinking that a boutique is all about clothing and fashion, think again.

At the recently opened High Touch boutique, 1551 Sherman Ave., you won’t be going into a dressing room. Instead, you will find elegant Middle Eastern and Persian ceramics, home decor, statues, and metal crafts, which will make any home look fashionable.

“Everything is handmade,” said Nayab Bolbolan, who was minding the store when the RoundTable stopped in. She is the daughter of the store’s owner, Naheed Bolbolan.

The materials used are also touted to be “organic and environmentally friendly.”

The colorful ceramics fill the shop with a whimsical beauty and brightness that makes it is a pleasure to be there. The pieces range in size from tiny vases and pots to two six-foot tall royal blue pots standing as if very serious sentries against the brick wall as you walk in the door.

In between those grand and graceful tiny-handled pots are several sets of glass shelves holding a sampling of the various types of ceramics offered in the shop, such as minakari, a form of painting and coloring the pots with enamel that leaves raised bumps, as if it were a curving canvases on a three-dimensional pointallism painting.

There are also pots, bowls, vases and tea sets made from gourds, metal and fascinating sand-colored and painted ceramic earthen ware made via an ancient process called sialk — a process that dates back to the ninth and tenth centuries.

Yet, none of it is imported as this is a full family operation. The Bolbolans and their extended family – aunts, uncles and cousins – make the pottery in a large production studio in a rural area about 90 minutes south of the Chicago area, Nayab said. “We price our pieces as per the hours it takes to make them.”


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