Monday, September 21, 2009

New York Shopping & Fashion

Other than the fact that many of the women were wearing scarves, what I noticed most in NYC was footwear. I saw lots of flip-flops, which you pretty much see everywhere these days. But, in the rain? In line for the 354-step climb up to the crown in the Statue of Liberty? Don't these people own shoes?

The other footwear thing that surprised me was the number of women wearing rubber boots when it was not even raining. They were wearing them with pretty much anything - tucked into skinny jeans, with a skirt and bare legs, etc. Some of the boots were a solid color, some had cute patterns on them. The last day we were in NYC it rained and the boots were out in full force - I lost count after 1o.

I had a day to myself in NYC to shop. I started at 96th Street and gradually made my way down to 34th Street. I really liked Diana & Jeffries (Madison Avenue between 92nd and 93rd Streets). It's small and I got of a lot of individual attention and advice from a woman who I believe was the owner. I will definitely be going back there! I also hit Lord and Taylor - they do inexpensive cashmere really well and I purchased a few sweaters.

I was very, very, very disappointed with Henri Bendel. I have always loved going there because it's such eye candy and it's usually full of unusual things that I don't see anywhere else. Not so this time. The store is cut up into little boutiques, each of which appeared to be staffed by whatever manufacturer rep whose merchandise was in the boutique. It felt very disjointed. Plus, some stations were way over-staffed - one perfume counter had, I swear, three people working it. And the inventory was just so-so. Nothing really unusual or unique. Some things were just odd - there was a person sitting at a table selling custom-made sandals. Yeah, that's a hot ticket post Labor Day. I believe Bendel's is in the process of converting itself to an all-accessories store (they used to sell some clothes). Hopefully my visit was poorly timed and they are able to make the conversion and get back to being a little jewelbox on Fifth Avenue.

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