Saturday, July 26, 2014

NYC Style Through the Looking Glass

The Windows of Jay Kos, Kate Spade, Tom Ford, TAGG, Yoya.....And What I Found

*Remembering Elaine Stritch and The Ladies Who Lunch

                **I'm not strange, weird, off, nor crazy,
                    my reality is just different from yours.

New York City is a window shopper’s paradise and Fifth Avenue from 49th to 60th Street is its main stage. During the Christmas holidays its store windows sparkle with colorful and festive displays, some traditional, some contemporary and some avant-garde but all capture the wonder and beauty of the season in a unique New York Style. 

Crowds swell in front of the huge windows of Saks, Bergdorf Goodman, Lord & Taylor further south on Fifth at 39th Street, and Macy’s gargantuan Herald Square store at 34th.  Street.
On this stretch of Fifth you will also find the U.S. flagship stores of Tiffany, Cartier, Armani, Gucci, Versace, Henri Bendel, Faconnable, FAO Schwarz, and Van Cleef and Arpel.
I am not a window shopper. I am city walker who walks at a brisk pace. I appreciate the magic of an artistically designed window no matter what time of year. Often I have stopped in midstride drawn by the hypnotic lure of these movie-like sets

My favorite street for window viewing is Madison Avenue from 86th
to 63rd Street. Sorry but Barney’s located at 61st street does not make the cut. Madison Avenue loses it intimacy and small town feel as one get closer to get to bustling 57th Street, plus the buildings are much taller.

Most major cities have a street for the luxury or fashion conscious shopper. I have walked several including Milan’s Via Montenapoleone, rue Saint-HonorĂ©
in Paris, the other two fashion capitals of the world. I have also walked Worth Avenue in Palm Beach and Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills.

I first encountered Madison Avenue many years ago when I walked home after a high school baseball game in Central Park’s North Meadow. I discovered an avenue with scores of brightly lit windows, filled with expensive well-tailored and bespoke clothes, shoes, linens, furniture, antiques and paintings created by celebrated designers. That night I felt as if I had I had crossed an imaginary line leaving New York City at one corner and winding up in some far-away place, many stores posted the locations of their stores worldwide.  Madison became my “yellow brick road.” It did not lead me to OZ but to Paris, London, Milan, Saint-Tropez, Portofino, Geneva, Tokyo, San Paolo, and Barcelona.

There are several fashion streets and neighborhoods in the city. Recently, over the course of several days, I searched for fun, stylish windows.  Instead of taking my standard mental photo I snapped over 200 pictures with my iPhone. I share my fourteen favorite windows. Theys are listed by neighborhood. I have excluded touristy Fifth Avenue.

Madison Avenue

Loro Piana  748 Madison Ave. near 65th St

"Your So Vain"  Walking Madison Avenue

Mallet Antiques  929 Madison Ave. 75th St.
Commode by Jean Royere, France 1950
Pair of Art Noveau Wall Light, Belgium 1900
Pair pf Rosso Levanto Columns 1780
"Welcome to My House a Very Fine House"

Ralph Lauren  Madison Ave. at 72nd St.
"Madison Avenue I Am Ready for My Closeup"
Missoni  1009 Madison Ave. 78th St.
Opening Night at the Opera
Tom Ford  845 Madison Ave. bet. 70-71St
"Steppin' Out of the Elevator"

MeatPacking/West Village

431 West 14th St
Summer in the Hamptons
YOYA  646 Hudson St.
Cool Kids of the West Village
Tiziano Zorzan  69 Eighth Ave. near 14th St.
Sunday in the Park with Zorzan


Patricia Field  306 Bowery 
Get Your Freak On
Bed Head Pajamas  252 Elizabeth Ave.
Mother and Child Pajama Party
Jay Kos  292 Mott St.
What I  Saw Through the Looking Glass


Agatha Ruiz de la Prada  466 Greenwich St.
Under the Big Top...Send in the Clowns

Hell's Kitchen

***TAGG  720 Ninth Avenue 49th St
Strut Your Junk...Buns in the Oven
*Store window photo at the beginning of the article.
Kate Spade  789 Madison Ave 66-67th St.

**Quote: Lewis Caroll, Alice Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass
***Most "Fun" Website - Signals  the "new" Hell's Kitchen. Click on TAGG!
All Photos by Rudi Papiri