Take the J, M or Z trains to Marcy or Hewes; the G to Broadway or the L to Lorimer.
351 Broadway between Rodney and Keap
Many years ago, flipping through Polaroids and rhapsodizing about a line she’d discovered, stylist Patti Arrington hipped me to the work of a Brooklyn designer called Monty. Soon after, during Fashion Week, I watched as Montgomery Harris (“Monty”) took the runway in acceptance of her Vidal Sassoon Award for Style. The win provided the super-talented designer seed capital to launch her line, Montgomery New York for Jolinda, Inc. Her designs have been lauded by press from Vogue’s Andre Leon Talley to Essence and worn by celebrities such as Oprah, Diana Ross, Erykah Badu and Sting.
After a few years of wholesaling, the Birmingham-bred Montgomery opened a small, chic shop in NoLiTa and when the opportunity arose to take her retail business uptown to a beautiful, light-filled corner shop, she did just that. Her Southern heritage is reflected in her now-iconic logo, the bandanna-wearing Jolinda. Jolinda’s family, including the very popular Baby Girl adorns items from clothing to handbags to jewelry. Located on the corner of Harlem’s Seventh Avenue and 136th Street, Montgomery Boutique, is a dreamy paean to creativity. From the curtains to the wall sconces and the whimsical inverted garden gracing her ceiling, the decor springs from Montgomery’s fertile imagination. Of her merchandise offerings, one-of-a-kind gems mingle happily with the more widely produced items such as her fun line of t-shirts.
I own several treasures from the Montgomery trove and am always complimented when I wear them, from the traffic-stopping hand-dyed fishtail gown to the curve-hugging homage to Frida Kahlo to the subtly sensual Zora Neale Hurston dress; the retro denim jumpsuit with Baby Girl’s afro-puffed visage boldly appliquéd on the back to the Jolinda black turtleneck: head scarf, moving eyes, “gold” hoop earrings and scarlet flocked lips stitched by hand across the breast.
You too can snatch up a few original pieces from the House of Montgomery, at a healthy discount. All one-of-a-kind women’s apparel is 50% off through January, plus a free tote bag with all purchases of $50.00 or more. Great design at a great price sounds like a plan for New Year’s Eve, and no one else in the room will be rocking your look.
Montgomery’s Joy of Giving Sale
Through January 31, 2009
2312 Adam Clayton Powell Boulevard (7th Avenue)
Call for exact hours: 212.690.2166
photo: Montgomery Boutique
Vanderbilt Avenue in Prospect Heights, Brooklyn has over the past few years become a destination location with bars, restaurants and shops dotting the blocks from Atlantic Avenue to Park Place.
With the opening three years ago of her lifestyle boutique, Fabrica, interior designer Demi Adeniran brought her modernist sensibility to the burgeoning retail/dining corridor.
Demi’s aesthetic has garnered her several pages in this month’s Domino Magazine, highlighting her lovely Brooklyn home, her decade-long residential interior design service, and the shop.
An instructor in the interior and industrial design departments at the Parsons School of Design, Demi is well versed in the history of art and design and has a comprehensive knowledge of textiles. This foundation is at the heart of her store offerings: mid-century modern furnishings refurbished and reupholstered in the fabrics selected by her trained eye.
Home accessories add palate pleasing pops of color in pillows from John Robshaw, feathered ceremonial headdresses (on special order from Cameroon) and a selection of textiles from around the world. Glassware and ceramics befitting the modern table abound. Options from mid-cen mod lamps to scented Archipelago candles make provision for ambient lighting. Objets such as African masks, gilded Buddha figures and vintage globes punctuate the space and an eclectic selection of mirrors lines the walls. Rounding out the merchandise in the bright, colorful shop is a collection of jewelry from Africa, Brazil and several Brooklyn artisans.
In honor of the holiday season, everything in the store is 10% off; with a 20% discount offered on tabletop goods. To commemorate the recent addition of books to the Fabrica merch mix, Demi will bake goodies from the book Baking for All Occasions and serve them in the shop this weekend (Saturday and Sunday 11am – 6pm) along with the French hot chocolate she now stocks, Les Confitures à l’ Ancienne.
Drop by, do some gift shopping and if you’re lucky, have Demi’s delightful, whip-smart daughter, 5-year-old Sade walk you through the store’s collection of imagination-engaging classic toys.
For last-minute shoppers, Fabrica will be open on Christmas Eve from 3pm to 7pm.
619 Vanderbilt Avenue
photo courtesy of Fabrica, LLC
Once you’ve dressed your home, dress yourself. Just blocks away from Fabrica near the stately arch of Grand Army Plaza, is the shop that brought style to the avenue, Pieces. Married proprietors, the savvy and attractive Latisha and Colin Daring are the perfect “face” for their business –hip, energetic and innately stylish. The Brooklyn shop recently doubled its space to accommodate its growing menswear offerings and to introduce a collection of clothing for children (including the line, Brycewear.)
Latisha brings her stylist’s eye, her retail acumen and her understanding of the Pieces customer (or “client” as she would say) to her selections as buyer for the store. Her fashion-forward offerings include Robert Durant, Adeleke and the vintage collection Worn Revolution. Fierce heels for women and fly kicks for men from the likes of Pour La Victoire and Public Royalty up the style ante.
This Thursday, December 18 from 6 – 9pm, vivacious designer Mimi Turner will be on hand for a trunk show and merchandise throughout the store will be up to 60% off. Christmas Eve brings discounts of up to 70% off from 3 – 8 pm.
671 Vanderbilt Avenue
Andrea Miller’s unerring eye for great detail is evident in her new Park Slope boutique, Eponymy. Offering a carefully selected collection of vintage finds from the turn of the century to the 1960’s (her grandparents are long-time purveyors of fine vintage goods in Cape May); designer resale from such labels as Prada, Gucci and Chanel as well as au courant emerging designers such as Eryn Brinie.
With curatorial assistance from Humble Arts Foundation, the shop also showcases the works of fine art photographers in addition to artists in various media from drawing to sculpture.
Eponymy is participating in this Thursday’s “Buy in Brooklyn” local business night of late shopping from 7pm – 10pm. Join them for festive bubbly, delicious hors d’œuvre and 10% off storewide* (even items already discounted 25-50%) Further sweeten the deal with an exclusive 20% “Buy in Brooklyn” special discount on gift certificates (spend $80 and your gift is worth $100.) Keep the tipple going until 11pm with the creative cocktail menu at Melt, just steps away.
*Note the discount does not apply to artwork.
photo by Sam Morgan
Eponymy 466 Bergen Street between Flatbush and 5th Avenues, Brooklyn.
Melt 440 Bergen Street
Regular readers of pendulum are familiar with my affection for singer, songwriter and friend Maiysha. I am thrilled to share the news that the first single, Wanna Be, from her debut album, This Much Is True has garnered Maiysha her first Grammy nomination!
For those in the NYC area, check out Maiysha’s December sets at Solomon’s Porch in Brooklyn on December 11th, The Eclectic Ride at Drom in NYC on December 16th, and Sol Village at the legendary S.O.B.’s on December 17th. For details and updates, check her website and myspace page.
Check the video for her Grammy-nominated Wanna Be.
I was watching the news with a buddy last night when I received word of the passing of the singularly named Odetta. My bright, informed friend had no idea who she was and I was stunned. I want to do my part in getting the word out about this progressive, conscious voice of light and was planning to do a blog post when I received a note from my friend Toshi.
Word from guest blogger Toshi Reagon:
One of our great teachers Odetta passed away this past Tuesday. I had the great honor and gift of knowing her and getting to work with her many times over the years. The last concert I did with her was this past April in Beacon. My Godmother Toshi asked me to do a benefit that would feature Odetta, Pete Seeger, BIGLovely and a bunch of other great singers for Clearwater. It was an amazing night. Odetta was particularly strong that night. If you go to www.toshireagon.com you can link to excerpts of a conversation between us after that show. My favorite part is at the end where she describes how she is still singing. I will really miss her.
Photo still from J.Bob Alotta’s Odetta Speaks with Toshi
With all the deep discounts going on, now is indeed, a great time to shop–in a civil manner, let’s hope. I say avoid the “madding crowd” altogether and help rebuild our economy by supporting small businesses as you go about stocking your holiday gift larder. From men’s and women’s apparel to artisanal crafts and handcrafted jewelry, here’s a small sampling of some of this week’s super sales:
Known for their luxurious textures, punchy graphics and bold colors, this contemporary American collection of men’s and women’s button down shirts, cotton and silk shirt dresses, silk ties, pocket squares, jackets and trousers is holding their annual holiday sample sale. Stylish bargains can be found at 50-75% off retail prices.
Men’s 100% cotton shirts with signature red cufflinks are now $75 instead of $195; Men’s overcoats are now $150 instead of $450; Ties and bowties are now $35 instead of $95; Women’s cotton and silk shirt dresses are now $125 instead of $350
423 WEST 14TH STREET #3F
BETWEEN 9TH AND 10TH AVENUES
212 620 3055
Subway A, C, E, L, 1, 2, 3 to 14th Street
Thursday, December 4th 5PM – 9PM
Friday, December 5th 10AM – 4PM
Saturday, December 6th 11AM – 8PM
Cash and all major credit cards accepted
Our online sale begins December 10th. To see available styles being offered, log onto http://www.rufus.com/sale.html @ noon on the 10th.
The Museum of Contemporary African Diasporan Arts in Brooklyn is hosting its 3rd Annual Shop Local one-day holiday sale on Saturday, December 5, 2008 from 11am – 6pm. The works of local artisans and designers as well as books from local authors, Danny Simmons, Chester Higgins, Kevin Powell and Jamel Shabazz are available in the MoCADA gift shop. Hot apple cider and other holiday favorites will be served
MoCADA 80 HANSON PLACE, BROOKLYN (CORNER OF SOUTH PORTLAND) 718 230 0492
Subway 2, 3, 4, 5, B & Q to Atlantic Avenue; D, M, N, & R to Pacific Avenue; C to Lafayette Avenue; G to Fulton Street
Mary Wormworth and Brooke Lundy are hosting a special holiday sale of the works of Mary’s Hands on Sunday, December 7, 2008 at the Eleventh Street Bar from 12pm – 4pm. Mary’s pretty, feminine jewelry is made by hand, no two pieces are exactly alike. The pieces make great gifts, or a special treat to one’s self.
Get in the holiday spirit with drinks at the bar and nibble on pizza whilst you shop.
11TH STREET BAR 510 EAST ELEVENTH STREET BETWEEN AVES A & B IN THE EAST VILLAGE 212 982 3929
Ties, among the many offerings at the Rufus sample sale.