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Top 10 Favorite Shops

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
I was a little surprised at the fact there was no favorite shops thread so I decided to start one. I wanted to do a top ten but I don't have the stamina for this nonsense, so I'll edit and post the others as time goes on. I know that the problem with these lists is that great shops get left out as not everyone is a jetsetter. There are also some amazing shops I've dealt with, but have never actually been to including The Denimbar, South Willard and Drinkwater's, thus I thought it would be unfair to include them on my list. I'm by no means an expert, so take my list with a grain of salt. However, here is my criteria: an amazing stock combined with excellent service. As simple as that. I'm a fairly non-social guy from rural Virginia so a big part of the shopping experience, for me, is taking away that intimidation factor and making me feel right at home. So enough blabbering, here are the beginnings of my top ten list: Alife Rivington Club (NYC): So yeah, they're starting to pander to an unquestionably unfashionable audience, however that doesn't change the awesome stock or great atmosphere of this shop. An unmarked shop where you have to ring a buzzer to get in, the interior is all wood and leather, giving it a feel of a hyper-exclusive gentleman's club. Each shoe gets its own little library-style cubby, with brands ranging from Adidas, Nike and Puma to Alife's house label, BAPE and JB Classics. The service is pretty friendly, however they get a little testy if you bring your obnoxious friends who have no desire to buy anything. Understandable. Definitely the greatest sneaker shop I've been in, and as an added bonus Daniel Dumile was in the shop trying on some sneakers last time I was there. Barney's Co-Op (DC): Say what you want, but this is probably the most well-rounded shop in DC, a place that's definitely not known for its fashion sense. They carry Nudie jeans, Trovata polos, Mason's pants, Rogues Gallery t-shirts (which I don't really like, but the kids seem to love the stuff), Steven Alan shirts and a smattering of decent to good sportswear from the likes of Penguin, Raf and Rag & Bone. A mainstream but solid stock. Also, not only have I never had the experience of dealing with crass employees that comes with the Barney's name, but every time I go in there a worker comments on something I have on. A good shop that happens to be extremely convenient for me, "the man" will continue to get my dollar as long as they keep having amazing sales and decent stock. Fabulous Fanny's (NYC): My parents are antique collectors. I can remember from my youth riding around in our Ford truck every single weekend going to auctions and estate sales. Even though I had no interest at the time in pottery, literature or china, I knew what my parents were looking for and nothing was more thrilling than rifling around in a box and finding a prize. That is the exact same feeling I get at Fanny's. The place is fairly disheveled and you can have an employee help you find a shape, or you can treat it as a hunt and dig through the various dressers and boxes. They really have some amazing frames, including some vintage Italian and American (yes, there are some American-made frames) that totally outclass anything being produced today, and at really great prices nonetheless ($50-120 on average). This is a real gem of a shop. Jack Spade (NYC): How can such an unoriginal choice be such an original shop? You honestly cannot appreciate Jack Spade until you visit his shop. It really says a lot about his persona and his aesthetic, and lends a great deal of authenticity to the line that he values utilitarian quality. There is such a pile of odds and ends in this shop (from little toy glider planes to books on herbology to small tools to odd stationary and notebooks), and it's pretty much all for sale. The shop's design is crowded yet coherent, and everything has its place. The bags are amazing. I'm sure most everyone knows that. Made in China or not, my Warren Street waxwear field bag is still one of most tangibly quality things I own. It just feels...good. And gets the job done. The assortment of bags in the shop is insane, most being exclusive to the location (the tool bags are my favorite). Also, they carry Loopwheeler. That would warrant a spot on this list regardless. The service is awesome and they'll treat you like a pal in or out of the shop. Overall, a great shop. Oak (NYC): This shop would be as at home in my hometown as it is in Brooklyn. Totally, completely devoid of any pretensions, Oak gets bonus points not for having an exceptional, unique stock, but having exceptional, unique service to go along with a pretty good selection of menswear. The jeans selection is really good and includes Rag & Bone, 5EP and Nudie, and the menswear is totally eclectic and includes Marc by Marc Jacobs and Modern Amusement (totally random). However, the big draw besides the denim selection are the pieces from local designers. I wish I could name some off the top of my head, but I can't. However, the store is like a treasure hunt, with dozens upon dozens of totally unique designs by people you've never heard of. Definitely going to try and find some goodies next time I go there. And did I mention the service? They employees will literally bend over backwards for you: dig around in the stock room, hem your jeans, make you coffee, etc. A nice, little shop that I'll always hold close to my heart. Odin (NYC): By far my favorite shop on this list, Odin is a "man's shop". I say this because it seems they manage to retain a sense of the avant-garde without the femininity that is usually associated with it. The owners/buyers are genius and pull the absolute best pieces from collections such as Engineered Garments, Umbro by Kim Jones and Trovata and every time I find a new niche obsession, they seem to carry it: Shane belt buckles, Kicking Mule Workshop denim and Common Projects sneakers (for Fall) included. Even the stuff I could never, ever envision myself owning or wearing, (obscene Just Another Rich Kid t-shirts, loud Comme des Garcons wallets, Rogues Gallery bags) I still find really intriguing. The atmosphere is great (lots of wood and sparse yet sufficient lighting) and the layout is really fantastic given the small space they have to work with (haven't been to the Lafayette location yet). Absolutely no pretensions from the sales staff round out the awesome experience. Can't say enough about this place, however I'll leave you with this: I'm taking $2,000 with me to spend on clothes in NYC next month (hey, I'm 21 and poor); I want to get a Cloak field jacket, however I've committed about half of my money to Odin. If I don't have enough for the jacket, tough luck, as I know I can easily drop a grand at Odin. It's truly that good. Steven Alan (NYC): In my mind, Steven Alan is a little generic: some great pieces but overall they don't have anything you can't find somewhere else (they do have some awesome Engineered Garments backpacks I haven't seen anywhere else). However, it's my brother's favorite shop in the world so I had to put it on here. I'm sure most of you are at least aware of Steven Alan, so it's not as if an overdrawn description is going to light your world on fire. The shop itself is definitely pretty neat, with exposed brick walls co-existing with wooden floors and massive ceiling-high shelves (they have cool library ladders for self-service). They have some great denim (Corpus, 5EP, Rag & Bone and Nudie come to mind) and of course essentials from Engineered Garments, Trovata and even Comme des Garcons. Again, it's a great store; I just view it as a go-to when someone else is out of stock rather than a destination. Feels like an old stand-by with service to match.
post #2 of 19
i would advise you to not drop $1k-$2k on a cloak jacket. their quality control is terrible- unless it has improved over the seasons but i don't think that is the case. invest your hard earned money into someone else's jacket.
post #3 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by xcoldricex
best store i've ever been to is probably... lift (tokyo) side note: i would advise you to not drop $1k-$2k on a cloak jacket. their quality control is terrible- unless it has improved over the seasons but i don't think that is the case. invest your hard earned money into someone else's jacket.
Thanks for the heads-up man. I've wanted one for awhile, but I've definitely heard several complaints about quality control so I'll definitely keep that in mine. I was also interested in some of Engineered Garments' and Nepenthes' jackets so I'll definitely look throroughly before I make any decisions (but yeah, probably won't get the Cloak). Also, I wish more people would add to this list. Creating the list is pretty damn tedious but oh so educational.
post #4 of 19
It's like a million degrees outside and I have the flu, so I don't have the energy to do a top 10. How about a top 5:

Riveted: a jeans store (Seattle)

Cool ambience, very stark interior and nice dressing rooms. But the constantly changing collection of denim for men and women, and the awesome customer service, make it worth a trip if you're anywhere near Seattle. They have Nudies, Stronghold and a few more common jeans like that, and then they have April 77, Nobody, Robin's Jeans and other lines that are hard/otherwise impossible to find in this area.

Merc (London)

Easily my favorite shop in London, Merc is all things mod. They've gotten a bit chavvier in the past few years, but they still have awesome shoes and suits. The music is good too.

Liberty (London)

Huge shop off Regent Street that carries all kinds of denim and other neat streetwear stuff. Comme des Garçons, Nudie, APC, Trovata (?) and a whole host of other stuff. Worth a trip if you're in London.

Sherry's (London)

The clothing quality is mostly rubbish, the sales people are terrible (they'll literally say anything to try to get you to buy something - telling me a pair of 100% polyester trousers were wool when I could easily read the tag inside will stick with me forever) but any shop that says "PAUL WELLER SHOPS HERE" on the wall will always be on my to-visit list when I'm at home. Super mod clothes and one day I know I'll find something cool and worth the price there.

Harvey Nichols (London)

Like Harrod's, only less touristy and with a better selection for men. Competitive prices on all the more major denim lines like Edwin, Nudie, Diesel, True Religion (shudder)...

I wish there were more cool shops in Seattle.
post #5 of 19
There was such a thread lost in the crash. I'll add details later, but here is a short list for now. I'll do LA and a much shorter list for Boston.

Boston:
Alan Bilzerian, Stel's, Louis Boston, Drinkwaters, Second Time Around.

L.A.
Maxfield, Maxfield Bleu, Traffic Men, American Rag CIE, HTC (Santa Monica location is great), Ron Herman in Fred Segal, Costume National, Jet Rag, Lo-Fi,
Sportie LA, Ragtime Denim Doctors, Union LA, KBond (don't know if it's still around).
post #6 of 19
KBond is gone.
post #7 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Baron
KBond is gone.

That's what I thought. Too bad. I was introduced to the APC Anglaise cut there, ampong other things. IT was a good store.
post #8 of 19
Here are a number of shops in London that I visit regularly: Poste, 10 South Molton Street, Mayfair. Excellent array of footwear; stocks both sneakers and smarter shoes. Casual-wise they have a wide selection from dior and Y3, via addidas to converse, with the occasional more unusual item such as CdG/Fred Perry collaborations. Up at the smart end they have a smaller selection of not particularly well made leather shoes and boots from labels like Paul Smith. Wow Retro, 10 - 16 Mercer Street, near 7 dials. Massive amout of second hand stuff in here with a high concentration of decent items amidst the tat. Good on polo shirts and v-knecks with some nice suits too. I also picked up a decent raincoat here last winter. Hub, 49 (I think) Stoke Newington Church Street. Lovely little shop this, but rather off the circuit, catering to the expensive tastes of trendy media types slumming it in Hackney. Stock raw Edwin, Acne and levis plus an excellent selection of washed jeans in these and other varities. Also sell nice penguin, fred perry etc polos. Brick Lane Market, Sundays from early morning till 2pm. Exceedingly fun shopping experience, with all sorts of junk, not just clothes! Definately worth a punt if you can bestir yourself at a reasonable hour on sunday. I'd also like to re-iterate that Liberty's is an excellent store, carrying the widest selection of raw jeans I've seen in London (APC, Nudie, PRPS, R&B). I also love the liberty print shirts in the classic menswear section; I've seen a chap selling shirts he's fashioned himself straight from the prints for half the price at Brick Lane Market. Will post my Oxford picks if anybody's interested.
post #9 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by jonglover
I'm taking $2,000 with me to spend on clothes in NYC next month (hey, I'm 21 and poor)

This is what passes for poor these days!?

Good post though, and well-written.
post #10 of 19
I just started a flagr map that pinpoints various places to shop for jeans. I've made it public so feel free to bookmark/share your own favorite places.

Please note this is JUST FOR DENIM. Sorry for being anal but I'm implementing this map into my blog so I don't want to load it up with irrevelent stores.

I'm based in NYC so there's currently only stores in my city.

http://www.flagr.com/maps/denim

Jonglover-I incorporated your revelent stores onto the map.
post #11 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by pacioli
I just started a flagr map that pinpoints various places to shop for jeans. I've made it public so feel free to bookmark/share your own favorite places.

Please note this is JUST FOR DENIM. Sorry for being anal but I'm implementing this map into my blog so I don't want to load it up with irrevelent stores.

I'm based in NYC so there's currently only stores in my city.

http://www.flagr.com/maps/denim

Jonglover-I incorporated your revelent stores onto the map.

Oh cool. Some cool shops on there.

And Dusty...I guess? I always feel poor reading this forum so...
post #12 of 19
Thanks for the list, I'll try and catch the NYC stores when I next there.
May I add Bergdorf Goodman Men's to the list. They do have a carefully edit streetwear selection.
Also, Barneys NY on Madison Ave has loads of streetwear, plus the Coop in Cheslea.
post #13 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by kitonbrioni
Thanks for the list, I'll try and catch the NYC stores when I next there.
May I add Bergdorf Goodman Men's to the list. They do have a carefully edit streetwear selection.
Also, Barneys NY on Madison Ave has loads of streetwear, plus the Coop in Cheslea.

go for it..it's public. I just didn''t want people putting The Pottery Barn on it. Sorry if I came across as an a-hole.
post #14 of 19
my best goes to blue in green in soho...surprised no talk on here since they have been getting raves on superfuture...awesome japanese denim shop, has everything a good denim shop in japan would have..

always liked famous friends however i havent been there in a while..NYC

and also check out Hinoya in Ueno Tokyo. Best jeans shop I've ever been to period.
post #15 of 19
best retail store: lift and lift ecru (tokyo) this is the fashion i am most interested in. they are stockists of labels like carpe diem, lmaltieri, linea, carol christian poell, label under construction, rick owens, ann demeulemeester, anne valerie hash, alexander mcqueen, martin margelia, mihara yasuhiro, kris van assche, jas mb, guidi, faliero sarti, john galliano, etc. not only are they stocked well, they present each line in an environment enhancing the effect of the clothing. as they say on their website they strive to convey the designers' concepts, ideas, and message through their presentation. the workers are extremely informative- they can tell you all the special procedures used to make the product - the materials, treatments, etc. they'll even tell you about the designer's concept behind each piece so you can appreciate them even more. a very inspiring place. all the service people seem to speak extremely good english (which is totally not expected, but is a nice bonus). not to mention- the women workers in the stores are really hot... i wish i lived closer to this store and i wish had a lot more money to spend there. oh and you would expect a place like this to be pretentious, but they are quite the opposite. i walked in the first time with a pair of jeans, a dirty tshirt, and a trucker hat- looking like the opposite of their target consumer. yet two workers answered all the questions i had and presented different things to me for the hour i was in there. there was absolutely no pressure to buy anything either. in fact, i went in and tried on the same coat about 5 times and did not end up buying it- most stores would probably put up some sort of fuss or give you dirty looks. unfortunately, i did not end up buying anything from the store- though i will make every effort to buy pieces from them before any other place. -they also provide duty free shopping if you're a foreigner... when you're buying stuff like this, that's a good chunk of money.
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