My New York City Shopping Trips Part V: Search & Destroy Vintage in Saint Mark’s Place

5. Search & Destroy Vintage

25 St. Marks Pl
(between 3rd Ave & Astor Pl)
New York, NY 10003
Neighborhood: East Village

This store is awesome. Located in the famed punk neighborhood of Saint Mark’s Place, Search & Destroy might look intimidating to the passerby, but I felt like a kid in a candy store. I wanted to buy so much, but we were pressed for time and in desperate need of a restroom. The prices were reasonable (in New York City terms). I found an awesome 60’s avant garde print polyester dress marked $24. There was a pair of velvet Doc Martins. I kid you not. It is a cramped inside, not that it was a small store, but more that there is just so much stuff. They sell vintage and new items for an alternative client base. Right up my alley, and, they happen to be right across the street from another awesome Saint Mark’s Place institution, Trash and Vaudeville.

Final thoughts: A must see!

 

My New York City Shopping Trips Part IV: Hamlet’s Vintage in Greenwich Village

4. Hamlet’s Vintage

162 Bleecker Street (Greenwich Village)

New York, NY 10012

I heard about this place from reading positive Yelp reviews. From the way people raved about it, I pictured it as a large, open store. In reality, it is one itsy bitsy room. There were a lot of costume-y pieces that I couldn’t see being very practical — more like those things you buy with the best of intentions, and then you never actually wear them out. (I have this child’s size kimono that I thought was just so rad in the store, but now has been living exclusively in my closet for a year.) There were some cool things, like authentic vintage military jackets, but what a lot of people may not know is that army surplus stores sell vintage military clothing too, for waaaay cheaper. I did see some metallic knit sweaters that tickled my fancy, but I didn’t buy anything here either.

I am used to vintage stores here in Pennsylvania, where there is a gotta-have-it item at every turn. I usually have a hard time not spending too much at vintage stores, because I want everything, but this trip I just didn’t have any luck. Granted, I am cheap (or as this blog would suggest, thrifty) but I am willing to spend more on a unique vintage piece with character. Vintage stores sell a lot of what you can find in thrift stores, but the draw is that they have the crème de la crème, the best of the best, weirdest and funkiest vintage finds. That’s why people are willing to spend more.

Final thoughts: Worth checking out if you have the budget and you’re in the neighborhood, but it’s very small.

My New York City Shopping Trips Part II: Greenwich Village’s Curated Goodwill Store

My record shop craving having been fulfilled, I now wanted to seek out some thrift stores and swanky vintage boutiques.

2. “Curated” Goodwill Thrift Store 

Address: W. 8th Street between MacDougal and Sixth Avenue

In my pre-trip research, I read this article about a curated Goodwill store in Greenwich Village. With all the talk of Ferragamo, vintage Dior, Ann Taylor, and other name-drops, I was so excited to check it out, I could hardly keep my pants on. Maybe I just have bad luck, but the only designer items I saw were in the window display, and those there being held for a silent auction. The window had some 90s Jimmy Choo clogs and Kate Spade heels, but nothing really relevant to current trends.

Don’t get me wrong, you can certain tell that someone was hand-picking all the items — there wasn’t any junk or damaged items like you might see in your average Goodwill, but all in all, it seemed like it had already been picked over. It is in a swanky neighborhood with a lot of vintage stores in the vicinity, after all… but, it was still fun to look. The store was clean and well organized, which is impressive, considering the amount of people who are in and out each day. Long story short, I left empty handed.

Final thoughts: Check it out if you’re in the area, but don’t make a special trip.

 

My New York City Shopping Trips Part I: Bleecker Bob’s Record Store

From Saturday to Tuesday, I stayed with my mother in New York City, where she lives. (You can read her blog here.) Before heading up there, I had spent a few hours researching vintage boutiques, record stores, and thrift shops that I might want to visit while in the city. Let me tell you, there are so many of these stores in NYC, it feels overwhelming if you want to narrow it down to a doable number, and there wasn’t any good reliable list of vintage/thrift stores to fall back on. Anywho, one click led to another and I ended up finding a bunch of stores with addresses on Bleecker Street, so I decided to make it easy on everyone with me and just try and shop on and around that street. I didn’t get to every store I had on my list but I did get to see quite a bit. Here is what I did.

1. Bleecker Bob’s Golden Oldies Record Shop

Address:118 West 3rd St, New York, NY 10012 (Greenwich Village)

Hours: Sun-Thur 11-1am Fri-Sat 11-3am (Crazy weird hours, right?)

I did not get a shot of the exterior of the store, but this is a good one. The prices were reasonable and based on rarity and condition. The place was not picked over, as is the case with a lot of record shops. The majority of the records are organized alphabetically/by genre, so you didn’t have to dig for all eternity if you had something particular in mind. I spent more than I normally do on records, but I was on vacation, so I got crazy. I bought The Ramones: End of the Century ($24), Kraftwerk: The Man Machine ($13), and a Siouxsie and the Banshees single Cities in Dust ($10). These are bands that I have never found on vinyl in any of my travels, and they are three of my favorite bands, so it was worth the money. Sadly, the Ramones album skips (not sure if it is my record player or what, because I can’t see a scratch).

Final thoughts: Go there!

Occupy Wall Street

Whatever your feelings, you have to admit that it is good to see young people actually banding together to change something. Our generation is constantly accused of being apathetic, which is often a correct accusation, so it’s nice to see something happening.

I am not blaming anyone for my college loan debt. I chose to go to a good school, one that was not cheap, at all. That was my choice. However, it is scary as hell to think that the job that took almost an entire year to get after my graduation is not secure. No one’s job is ever 100% secure, I get that. I work in an optometry office. The calls for appointments get fewer and fewer everyday. Customers are scared to spend any money. They only get what their insurance covers. I am terrified. I know if business does not pick up, I’ll be the one to go. I’m the newest and the youngest. And this isn’t even a job that has anything remotely to do with my college education. THAT is what we’re angry about. It’s no one’s fault in particular, but when the President suggested a bill that can help get our nation back on track — a bill that might help me keep my job, or help my friends GET jobs — and we see so many people trying to shoot it down, we get mad. The possibility of losing my job is very real. I will no longer afford to pay my bills and my loans and would be forced to move back in with my family, even though I’ve just been able to move out.

Okay, stepping off my soapbox and going back to fashion. Hey, didja see some of those cool outfits?

This is video I recorded while walking through Manhattan on 10/08/2011. Even though I was not marching with them, it felt like I was experiencing history in the making.

Street Fashion in Central Park, 10/08/2011 New York City

Last weekend, I took a trip to New York City with my boyfriend to visit my mother and to do some sight seeing (it was my boyfriend’s first time in NYC). We explored the city and had a great time! I wore my new Dolce Vita for Target boots. I found them on eBay for only $15 including shipping! I wanted to buy them when they were available at Target, but they sold out in my size. They are actually more comfortable than my old sneakers, amazingly enough, and I was doing A LOT of walking.

We spent much of Saturday touring Central Park. I must admit, the park keeps getting nicer and nicer. One thing that never changes about New York is the fabulous street fashion. I managed to snap a few photos:

And, by a complete stroke of luck, we ran into the Occupy Wallstreet movement in Manhattan as they were leaving the park they’d been protesting in and were relocating.