eat. shop. love. nyc.

NYC November sample sale linkstravaganza
November 10, 2010, 8:57 am
Filed under: Shop | Tags: , , ,

It’s November! Designers are slashing prices. If you’re in NYC, this is good news for you. Here are some of the November sample sale roundups I’ve found.

  • Refinery29 – must read
  • Daily Candy – must read – has anyone been to the Kathryn Amberleigh sale? I have a pair of her boots and they are HOT. I get complements every time I wear them out… wouldn’t mind scoring a pair of pumps.
  • New York Mag – not strictly sample sales, but some are listed here.

I’m most excited for the Archetype and eM Showroom sample sales which carry casual, urban brands like Gar-de, Grey Ant, LnA, Quail, and others. I also think the Colette Malouf sale will be the perfect place to pick up sweet holiday presents for the special ladies in your life. Go forth and shop!


Downtown NYC walk, shop & eat circuit

[tweetmeme]Some girlfriends are coming in from out of town and they are staying with another mutual friend in Union Square. I have plans to ride my bike to Brooklyn with other friends after brunching with them, so I wrote up an e-mail with suggestions of where to go and what to eat given that their home base is Union Square. What emerged was what I think is a great rough itinerary for a weekend day when all you want to do is eat, shop, and fall in love with NYC. My perfect Saturday (or Sunday – or any day you don’t have to work, I guess):

I’ve taken the liberty of drawing a walkable downtown Manhattan shopping map for you (with words). We can start with brunch in the East Village, the earlier the better bc then we won’t have to wait for hours. I would like to go to Cafe Orlin at 10 am so we can get in before the 11 am brunch rush, or we can do Cafe Mogador if you want slightly more ethnic (Moroccan and Mediterranean), but if they’re too busy, Paprika can be our backup backup. After brunch, I’ll be leaving you, but here are a few suggestions:

Recommended shopping (that you can’t get in DC)

East Village – walk down East 9th St. (very close to brunch) between Second Avenue and Avenue A to find a sweet collection of boutiques, clothing and otherwise. I like Cadillac’s Castle for jewelry and I picked up a gently used Alexander Wang dress there for $88. I like Think Closet as well and I think they’re having a sale, and there’s Roni and so many other stores on that stretch that are so cute but I don’t remember all their names. A great area to spend a few hours shopping. If you’re hungry after, head over to E 7th St between 1st and Ave A where there’s Luke’s Lobster for a lobster roll, Porchetta for a slow roasted pork sandwich, and Butter Lane for the most amazing FRENCH (not the American) vanilla buttercream on vanilla cupcake that you have ever had – seriously, the frosting is so good I want to rub it all over my body. I rarely feel this way about vanilla. One block up on St. Mark’s is Crif Dogs for a deep fried hot dog – I like the Chihuahua – or Xi’An Famous Foods for a lamb burger and some hand-pulled noodles. So many choices, so little time…

If you want a quick break from shopping and eating, swing by Tompkins Square Park on Ave A and 7th/9th. Usually there are musicians or sometimes concerts and festivals. You can just hang out on the green for a bit and rest your feet if you like, or just cruise on through.

From East Village, you can make your way down south to LES past Houston, stop by Szeki on Rivington (she’s a doll!), Honey in the Rough, Pixie Market, Miks, Yumi Kim (sale section in back of the store), Foley & Corinna… If you want jewelry there’s also Hillary Flowers on Clinton St. By this point, you’ll probably be ready for a snack. I would recommend swinging by Baohaus to try the pork belly or beef brisket bao, or just get a Straight Frush between the three of you to share. If you are in the mood for sweets, go to Sugar Sweet Sunshine for a $1.50 cupcake and some bomb-ass banana pudding. Or swing by Meatball Shop for a $4 homemade ice cream cookie sandwich – ginger snap cookie with vanilla ice cream is the best.

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Summery underthings at Azaleas
June 7, 2010, 11:43 am
Filed under: Shop | Tags: , , , , , ,

It’s summer. It’s hot out. I would like to live in a world where it were socially acceptable to go braless all the time in steaming hot weather, but that world exists only in my fantasies. In real life, the only people who will appreciate your braless-ness in public are likely to be pervs.

This is why summertime is a great time to augment your lingerie collection. Say goodbye to padding, underwires, restrictive cups, and chunky straps. Say hello to light linings, lace, soft cups, and spaghetti straps.

As soon as I walked into the little lingerie shop Azaleas on East 10th between 1st and 2nd Avenues, the two salesgirls greeted me and offered their assistance, letting me know right away that if I saw anything I liked that wasn’t in my size, I could just ask because they have other sizes tucked away in their secret treasure bins. Continue reading

Elizabeth and James sample sale
May 17, 2010, 4:37 pm
Filed under: Shop | Tags: , , , ,

UPDATE: See’s Above the Fray report from the E&J sale today. Lots of size 4s for women, one of a kind samples. No stock replenishment.

I am distressed to hear that the Elizabeth and James sample sale has now moved north to 39th St. I have steadfastly waited in line for hours to get into this sale of the Olsen twins’ contemporary line for the last two years (once by Savvy on 18th and another time in SoHo). I scored some great dresses ($65), trousers ($60), shorts ($40), and belts ($25). This year, I’m afraid I can’t spare the extra time. My loss is your gain, friends. Includes womenswear AND menswear.

Shop: Elizabeth and James sample sale | 250 West 39th Street Suite 1701, NYC | May 19-21, 2010 | 10 am to 6 pm

Foley + Corinna sample sale is worth a visit
April 30, 2010, 12:03 pm
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Foley + Corinna chiffon dress, now $40

I checked out the Foley + Corinna sample sale this morning on the way to work and I left a very happy girl. There are several racks of $30 sample tops and $40 sample dresses, and all vintage (shoes, tops, dresses, boots, etc.) are $25 each. I got a gorgeous vintage strapless tea-length column dress for $25 and vintage pumps with genuine snakeskin accents for $25. I also got a sweet floral cotton babydoll top with the classic F+C ruched bust for $30, an ethnic and graphic one-shoulder silk top for $30, and a beaded black dress for $40. Non-sample clothing under $100 – vests, dresses, tops, satin romper, leather leggings, ruffled tanks, etc. See full price list at, but please note that as of this morning, silk dresses have been marked down from $110 to $95.

Summer bags (crocheted, denim, etc.) and zippered clutches are $55, sample bags are $75 (but not so cute as the good ones have already been snapped up by earlier shoppers), summer bags and clutches are $95, main collection bags (zipper, moto, Bender, classic) are $150. Lots of black, beige, silver, bronze, distressed burgundy, dark purple, bright purple, pink, and yellow. They are reported to be getting a new shipment in today, so go forth and shop!

Deal: Up to 75% off womenswear, handbags, and jewelry from spring and fall 2009, plus archive samples
Now through Sunday, May 2. Thurs—Sat 10am—8pm, Sun 10am—7pm. 186 Orchard St between Houston and Stanton Sts (212-529-2338)

How To Make It In America Foursquare badges
February 21, 2010, 2:09 pm
Filed under: Do, Eat, Go, Shop, Watch | Tags: , , ,

This Sunday at 10 pm, you can watch episode two of the new HBO series How To Make It In America. The first episode reminded me of a toned-down Entourage, which is not that surprising considering Mark Walhberg is an exec producer. They’ve teamed up with the folks at Foursquare to create a Foursquare badge that you can unlock at the following NYC restaurants and retailers, which I guess may be set to appear in future episodes of the show or simply exude the attitude of the show’s characters. Make HTMIIA your Foursquare friend, then check into any 3 of 20 possible New York nightlife or dining destinations. List courtesy of

If you’ve found yourself here wondering what Japanese restaurant Rachel told Ben he needed to move on with his life at in Episode 2, my best guess is Shima Japanese Restaurant, a 2nd Ave mainstay. The only clue I have besides the vague description “that sake place on 2nd Ave” and my understanding of the HTMIIA as a downtown kind of crew are the interior shots of the restaurant, and while I haven’t been to Shima, it seems the most likely fit since none of the Japanese restos below are actually on 2nd Ave.

If you’re looking for the Mexican restaurant where Rachel had her birthday party, it was La Esquina in SoHo.

Restaurants Shopping
Diner A.P.C.
Momofuku Ssam Bar Apple Store
Momofuku Milk Bar Barney’s
Little Owl Beacon’s Closet
Spotted Pig Bird
Aldea Built By Wendy
Minetta Tavern Fred Flare
Public John Varvatos
Cosmo’s Diner Muji
Peasant Oak
La Esquina Odin
Blue Ribbon Opening Ceremony
Locanda Verde Prada
Roberta’s Scoop
Fette Sau Steven Alan
Balthazar Tokio 7
Freeman’s Restaurant Top Shop
Motorino Uniqlo
Al Di La
Frankie’s 457
Vinegar Hill House

Unlock BlackBook’s Nightlife Badge on Foursquare! BlackBookMag has also teamed up with the aspirationally driven folks at HBO’s How to Make It in America, and they are proud to offer you the chance to achieve a personal gold standard by unlocking the exclusive BlackBook Nightlife badge on Foursquare. Make HTMIIA your Foursquare friend, then check into any 3 of 20 possible New York nightlife or dining destinations (restaurants are the new nightlife, you know), and you’ll get the shiny new Foursquare badge pictured here. Frankly, eating or having a drink at the impressive list of venues is reward enough! But playas play on.

Eligible Check-ins:

Allen & Delancey Japonais
Apothéke Macao Trading Co.
Balthazar Matsuri
Boom Boom Room Morimoto
The Breslin Norwood
Butter Pegu Club
Coffee Shop Per Se
Craft Soho House
Daniel The Spotted Pig
Elmo Tenjune

NYC sample sale season in full swing
December 10, 2009, 1:45 pm
Filed under: Shop | Tags: , ,

Sorry. I’m a terrible and unreliable blogger. But here is a quick rundown of some sample sales going on (and coming up) that I think will be worthwhile (mostly via While I do not have the budget to blow this holiday season (cursed economy), my willpower may break down when it comes to the following sales:

Label: Alice + Olivia
Deal: Party dresses for $179 (down from $440), fall pants for $99 (down from $297), and tops for $89 (down from $242) My guess is that they’ve started to mark down since they’re in the last two days of the sale. A&O is great for holiday dress shopping.
When/Where: Through Friday, December 9. 8am—8pm. 80 W. 40th St at Sixth Ave (212-840-0887)

Label: Diane von Furstenberg
Deal: Up to 75% off tops, sweaters, and of course DVF’s signature printed dresses – now marked down 10-30% from original prices – through Friday. (Stock replensished on Wednesday.) I think wrap dresses were $150 or so, which means they’re probably around $100 now in the last couple days of the sale. Expect further discounts on Friday, but less selection, of course.
When/Where: Thurs 10am—7pm, Fri 9am—3pm. 260 Fifth Ave between 28th and 29th Sts (no phone)

Label: James Jeans
Deal: Denim for between $15 and $90 – I’ve been meaning to get into jeans more. I just hate wearing things that don’t have any give in the waist. Mama likes to eat, and tight jeans don’t assist in that endeavor.

When/Where: Through Friday, December 11. Thurs 9:30am—7:30pm, Fri 9:30am—2pm. 500 Greenwich St between Spring and Canal Sts, #202 (212-221-4603) Continue reading