Shop one, shop all. Manhattan chic is on the shelves and on the streets, waiting for you to make it yours. Hop on board a flight to New York and discover where to find the best of New York style in 2013.
A sense of style
Certain trades are inextricably linked to New York City’s identity: advertising, finance, publishing, architecture, the arts. Perhaps the most “New York” of all industries is the big business of fashion. An incubator of influential street style and home to many of the world’s top designers – not to mention the biannual fashion shows at Lincoln Center that lure top editors with the latest looks (yes, Anna Wintour is as influential as she seems) – the Five Boroughs live for the rag trade. “Everyone has an individual sense of style in New York City,” says stylist Sam Spector, who has worked for Esquire and Out and styled Daniel Radcliffe, Ethan Hawke, and Robert Downey, Jr. “It’s the perfect place to get inspiration and develop your own personal style.”
While overhauling your look might sound intimidating, fear not. There’s a shopping destination with your name on it – from the boutiques of Nolita and the Meatpacking District to the flagship stores of the Upper East Side and hallowed halls of Barneys New York, Saks Fifth Avenue, and Bergdorf Goodman. “It’s always great to see people really decked out,” says David Rubenstein, Associate Buyer for Jeffrey New York (449 West 14th Street), one of the city’s most beloved destinations for au courant clothing. “I love watching young people, people who work in fashion – individuals of all sorts – experimenting with their looks.”
Rubinstein notes that Givenchy, Valentino, Dior, and Celine were standouts for Fall 2013. Expect sharp leather or suede bomber jackets, sneakers from high-end fashion houses, and twists on traditional men’s suiting. “You’ll see a lot of classic clothes reinterpreted for fall,” Rubenstein says. “Designers used lots of rich palettes, with colours like Bordeaux and navy.” Women can expect handbags with forward-thinking silhouettes, as well as lots of luxurious pieces in “winter white.”
Spector sees bold colours, mixed prints, knitwear, and pleats as menswear trends for fall. His go-to shops are Barney New York, Odin, and Save Khaki, as well as the well-edited selection from Rubenstein and team at Jeffrey New York. His top pick for footwear: “Pierre Hardy – the best designer shoes that look different to everything else out there.”
According to Eric Nicholson, former Senior Fashion Editor of Marie Claire and contributor to Vanity Fair and Esquire, there are many notable fashion developments for fall – the most significant being a huge St. Laurent Paris store in Soho. He’s keen on Chanel’s flat motorcycle boot for women, pastel items from Louis Vuitton and Gucci, and strong, classic coats to dress up a more “grunge” look. If all of these designer brands sound, well, expensive, Nicholson points out that head-to-toe “pricey” is not necessarily the Manhattan way. “New Yorkers do the “˜high-low’ thing – a Chanel jacket paired with jeans – more than people from other cities,” he says. “J. Crew is pretty eclectic and solid for both women and men. And Nicola Formichetti, Lady Gaga’s stylist, is the new creative director of Diesel. Expect to see some great things from him.”
Meanwhile, Michael Macko – former Fashion Director of Details and VP for Saks Fifth Avenue, who tends to the natty blog mmloves.tumblr.com – can’t get enough of H. W. Carter in Williamsburg, Brooklyn at 127 North Sixth Street. (Yes, sometimes you might need to take a bridge to complete your look.) “H.W. Carter is for men only – sorry ladies – and is an incredibly well-merchandised, assorted store,” Macko says. “If you want a wardrobe staple like a blue or white oxford, they have them for you from Gitman Vintage. But if you want fashion with a capital “˜F,’ they have that for you, too, with brands like Junya Watanabe, Post Overalls, Engineered Garments, and Monitaly.” (Could it be that the best new men’s store in Manhattan is in Brooklyn?)
Great style is never about the price tag. It’s about how you feel in what you wear, and how well your clothing expresses the true “you”. Take some of our experts’ trend suggestions or thumb your nose at convention and dress to your hearts’ desires. That’s the beauty of shopping in New York”¦ Whatever you want is here, served up in grand fashion.
More on Fashion, with Michael Macko
If you shop, shop, shop and still want more fashion, Mister Macko suggests the Museum at FIT (the Fashion Institute of Technology, located in Chelsea). “It’s a hidden gem that’s often overshadowed by her big Upper East Side sister, the Costume Institute [at the Metropolitan Museum of Art]. What she doesn’t have in size, she makes up for in her integrity. Helmed by Director Valerie Steele, the museum picks important moments in fashion and explains their relevance to us. This fall she takes on the influence of the LGBT community and culture in fashion with “˜A Queer History of Fashion: From the Closet to the Catwalk.’ It will be a must-see. The museum is free to visit, although it’s not open on Sundays.” Show runs from September 13, 2013 to January 4, 2014.
The Museum at FIT, Special Exhibitions Gallery, Seventh Avenue at West 27th Street, New York
Header photo: New York City © Pascal Perich
What’s your ultimate NYC shopping destination? Share your favourites below.
Written by Andrew Stone