The Shopper’s Guide to New York City

It’s no secret that New York City has a leading role as the international hub for all things cultural.

A month-long summer venture to the Big Apple was more than enough time for me to realize how truly inspirational New York City is.

Come to think of it, an hour is all it takes for travelers to take in the splendor of it all, especially those with a soft spot for style.

Plan your next excursion with several tFS shopping selections in mind; some are hidden gems, others are world-renowned spotlights.

Every single borough is home to a smattering of eclectic vintage shops, each with their own quirks that often reflect the colorful tastes and personalities of the owners who run them.

The secret to unearthing sneaky secondhand goldmines is to stroll beyond the main streets and hunt for intriguing storefronts.

Take Reborn Process, for example. Located on a sidestreet just beyond Broadway, nothing shouts out to shoppers except a cursive neon sign. Owned by model Hyoni Kang and friends, the boutique is a spotless hole-in-the-wall, with upscale vintage garments that have been recreated by hand in the obscured sewing room in the rear of the hideaway. Now with trunk shows around the country, Reborn Process is certainly worth a peek.

Jump back on the main drag for a while and, on the bustling corner of Broadway and Broome, lies the recently opened Topshop/Topman. Consisting of three colossal floors, the British-born chain carries an overwhelming selection of only the most current trends. The shoe lounge on the third level will make any shopaholic swoon.

For more eccentricities, head to the East Village, particularly St. Mark’s Place. There is plenty to see packed into an area of just a few blocks. Here, there is an undeniable presence of Japanese culture, from the sushi bars every few paces to the array of whimsical, shabby-chic secondhands that convey a feeling of a little Tokyo.

Perhaps one of the most beloved and unassuming shops in the Village is Search and Destroy Vintage. Its warm, welcoming staff are quite an unexpected pairing to the raging punk rock soundtrack in the background and dimlit atmosphere. Also unexpected are the affordable prices that make a collection of offbeat clothes (most of which remind us of Lekeliene Stange’s wardrobe) available to everyone, not just the supermodels.

Lastly, one neighborhood that’s worth an excursion to is Greenwich Village. Home to designer boutiques such as Matthew Williamson, Stella McCartney, this is as high-end as it gets. And while purchasing some Alexander Mcqueen might not be part of your itinerary, admiring the late designer’s storefront should be. Oversized images of models in McQueen’s final collection are a poignant sight.