There’s nothing wrong with shopping the racks at Big Apple department stores, but for one-of-a-kind finds nothing beats a trip to one—or several—of NYC’s indie boutiques.
From retro-inspired furniture and modern fashion to unusual collectibles, Marco De Los Rios—concierge at W New York and social director of New York City Association of Hotel Concierges—shares his favorite indie shops in the city.
In downtown Brooklyn, design enthusiasts will find everything to give their home or office a fabulous new makeover at Bright Lyons.
“It feels somewhat like time traveling back to the 70s,” De Los Rios said of the Atlantic Avenue shop. “[The store] has an eclectic mix of modern furniture and one-of-a-kind curiosities.”
While in the colorful space, visitors can shop mid-century American furniture, as well as eye-catching artwork by an extensive list of artists.
In Manhattan, Creel and Gow, housed in the former stables of a historic Grosvenor Atterbury’s townhouse, is a one-stop shop for the avid collector.
“This Upper East Side gem has much to browse,” De Los Rios said. “Each part of the store highlights a different color contrast. I love the endless array of décor, which ranges from taxidermy animals to lacquered jewelry boxes.”
Other unique objects one might find at the boutique include Colombian placemats, zebra and wood frames, antler chairs, stone minerals and much, much more.
Farther downtown in the East Village, Duo NYC is “a very distinct amalgamation of both vintage and modern fashion,” De Los Rios said. “With the warm exposed-brick walls and fireplace, this East Village treasure feels more like a cool friend’s home than a store.”
At the shop, fashionable NYC visitors can browse a carefully curated collection of clothing, shoes and accessories by emerging independent designers, plus a pretty impressive collection of vintage finds.
“Don’t forget to check out the back room,” De Los Rios said. The back room boasts men’s apparel, accessories and clearance items.
For even more accessories of the handbag variety, head to NoLIta’s aptly named Bag.
The intimate Mulberry Street boutique is the perfect place to find a large selection of durable leather handbags in an almost never-ending variety of rich hues. From hobos to crossbodies, the store pretty much carries every type of bag, with small styles starting at $99 while mid-range versions come with $198 to $275 price tags.
If you want a one-of-a-kind item, the local accessories designer ENGSO sells handmade leather products in the store, which range from $225 to $1,200. You can watch the designer craft these items or opt for a custom order.
If you want to add some Western footwear to your shoe collection, check out Space Cowboy Boots, also in NoLIta.
The shop is bursting at the seams with such brands as Stallion Boot Co., Old Gringo Boots and more—plus, the boutique carries its own line, Planet Cowboy. While at the downtown destination, visitors can also purchase belts, buckles and Space Cowboy’s very own collection of T-shirts.
In SoHo, E. Shaw Jewels, which rests on a quiet, residential section of Sullivan Street, is filled with colorful precious gemstone necklaces, earrings and bracelets—all displayed in glass cases with charming bronze details and tucked away in stacked cubby holes. The one-of-a-kind items in this quaint shop are the brainchild of mother-daughter design duo Eva and Elizabeth “Liz” Shaw.