New York is America’s beating heart of fashion. LA may be up and coming but it’s too celebrity, too laid back for many. NYC takes fashion seriously. New York Fashion Week is one of the ‘big four’. It’s established and respected as a fashion city and New York style reflects that credibility.
Macy’s and Bloomingdales Department Stores
The flagship of Macy’s, New York’s historic department store, has stood in its current location on Herald Square for more than 115 years. It is the world’s second largest such store with clothes and accessories covering 2.2 million square feet.
Bloomingdales, the sister store to Macy’s, is no less famous or historic. The founders started out selling hoop skirts to the ladies of Manhattan’s lower east side in 1861.
Both stores are a quintessential part of New York’s fashion history and are not to be missed and for those who are looking for inspiration in wedding dresses, then they offer some great inspiration.
The New York Garment Centre
The Garment District is the fabled creative hub of New York fashion. Find inspiration around every corner in the trimming shops, amongst the rolls of sumptuous fabric and on the rails of the cutting-edge clothes shops.
On these streets, you’ll be rubbing shoulders with the people who really make fashion work. Buyers, stylists, designer, students and retailers all shop here. It’s intoxicating to feel a part of it.
The luxury shops which sell designer dresses such as Chanel and Prada all have industrial facades in So-Ho. It’s an image of New York many will find familiar. The rough and gritty manufacturing history of this district is still evident even if it does now trade in £1,000 handbags rather than human graft.
Carefully preserved metal fire escapes separate luxury goods stores, cult boutiques and top end high street chains from each other. There’s art spaces, trendy coffee shops and fine dining to be found here too.
So-called because of its setting north of Little Italy, this gem of a neighbourhood is a shopping paradise. The shops are lovely. Boutiques, local and designer, all a fashion lover could want. There aren’t too many but they are unique and beautifully presented inside and out.
It’s the area the shops are in that’s also special. No-Lita is a movie set. Iconic concrete stoops to sit and people watch from, cute little side walk cafes that have featured in every ‘girlie movie’ that was ever filmed in the city and a friendly vibe from the locals.
Fashion and Textile Museums
New York has a multitude of museums and galleries which house permanent exhibitions of fashion, design and textiles and also for wedding dresses. The garment industry is literally sewn into the city’s historical fabric.
Anyone with an interest in the evolution of clothing and fashion should hit the Museum of Modern Art, the museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology and the museum of the City of New York.
Each location is packed with thousands of iconic designer dresses worn by famous women, costumes from film and TV and the clothes worn by America’s earliest settlers.