December 16, 2013
By Anthony Rotunno | Shopping

Shop the Best of the UK in N.Y.C.
Eilizabeth DuBois

Anglophiles, rejoice: The recently opened Flat 128, in Manhattan's West Village, has made it possible to find certain exclusive, British-made products without traversing the Atlantic. While its inventory is largely devoted to statement jewelry (like designs from Imogen Belfield and Anabel Campbell), the boutique also stocks stylish accessories from English heritage brands (Fox Umbrellas and Johnstons of Elgin cashmere, to name two) as well as handsome magazines (such as The Gourmand and Library Paper). Walls covered in rich blue felt and a stately marble fireplace create an inviting space reminiscent of an eccentrically decorated English home—just don’t expect a spot of tea. 15 Christopher St.;

November 22, 2013
By Sasha Levine | Shopping

A Dazzling Holiday Pop-Up Shop
Courtesy of The Holiday Workshop

It may not be December, but award-winning event planner Bronson van Wyck and renowned interior designer Celerie Kemble have already decked the halls of their Holiday Workshop pop-up on New York’s Upper East Side. “We were looking for a way to combine our work in a way that felt fun and fabulous,” says Kemble. “And we both like a party.”

Set in a townhouse off Madison Avenue, the emporium does feel more like a lavish Christmas soiree than a boutique. At this holiday party, however, everything is for sale. “It’s a mash-up of the English countryside, Warsaw, Paris, Antwerp, New York City, Argentina, Mexico City and Arkansas,” says van Wyck of the collection.

Highlights include a stocked bar cart (from $3,850) complete with vintage glassware and van Wyck’s Arrowhead Farms cocktail mixes and a tartan tablecloth ($250) and monogrammed mint julep cups (set of four, $275). Living areas are decorated with Kemble’s red velvet Napoleon sofa (from $4,485) and whip-stitched leather nesting tables ($3,885). A selection of curated Christmas trees is also on offer, like the Two Turtle Doves (from $17,500), which comes trimmed with thousands of lights, white owls, handpicked ornaments and pheasant feathers—“so many,” van Wyck adds, “that [it] feels like it might take off into the wintry sky.” 19 E. 75th St.; 212-242-3004;

November 04, 2013
By Shivani Vora | Shopping

Ferragamo Pops Up in L.A.
Courtesy of Salvatore Ferragamo

Ferragamo is celebrating its 100-year history in America with its first-ever pop-up shop (through November 15) in Los Angeles, located in the former Beverly Hills post office, which is now the new Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts.

The experience is nothing like that of a visit to a traditional Ferragamo shop. Art installations (of the oil-paint, video and sound variety) by several emerging artists adorn the curved walls. Accessories—creative director Massimiliano Giornetti presents an exclusive line of handbags, shoes and bijoux and fine jewelry inspired by the city and the company’s first designs in Hollywood—are displayed on pedestals topped with gold mirrors. Look for items like a geometric purple Lucite minaudiere ($1,650), ankle-strap flat sandals with hand-knotted calfskin straps ($695), peep-toe stiletto booties in lizard skin and high-tech mesh ($925) and multi-colored Lucite-and-resin cuffs ($590 each).

Though the store is only temporary, it debuted with much fanfare at a gala last month (sponsored by Ferragamo president Ferruccio Ferragamo) that opened the Annenberg Center. The likes of Demi Moore, Kevin Spacey, Diane Lane, Tim Robbins and Sidney Poitier attended, and a fashion show of the spring/summer 2014 collection featured Italian opera tenor Vittorio Grigolo singing as models walked the runway. 9390 N. Santa Monica Blvd.;

October 21, 2013
By Ingrid Skjong | Shopping

Shopping Spotlight: My Wardrobe
Courtesy of My Wardrobe

Carmen Borgonovo knows exactly where to locate the most fashionable finds. And as fashion director of the London-based online shopping destination, Borgonovo—who was formerly senior style editor at Harper’s Bazaar UK and an accessories editor at Vogue and is a regular contributor to Elle—uses her insider knowledge to bring the best of the fashion world to her audience. Here she chats about the site and what she’d like to wear now.

Q: What is the key to successful fashion e-commerce?
Online shoppers are extremely savvy. They’re looking for sites that are a step ahead and bring something unique and exciting to the market. New brands and carefully curated product offering is an important part of this, but impeccable customer service and a seamless shopping experience are all essential. We like to think that we act as our customers' best friend.

Q: How does My Wardrobe set itself apart?
We focus on offering our customers a unique curation of up-and-coming, emerging and established designers, ensuring that we stand out.

Q: You recently made the fashion-week rounds. What caught your eye?
There have been some truly beautiful collections on the runways this season. From New York, Emilia Wickstead, Thakoon and Proenza Schouler. In London I loved Meadham Kirchhoff, 1205, J.W. Anderson, Simone Rocha, Eudon Choi and Huishan Zhang. Prada and MSGM were highlights for Milan.

Q: What will you add to your own wardrobe?
Culottes for spring!

Q: And what excites you about fashion right now?
The beauty of fashion is that it’s always changing and evolving. It’s wonderful to see young designers growing from emerging talent to become global names. That’s what inspires me each season.

September 17, 2013
By Ingrid Skjong | Shopping

A New Flagship on Madison Avenue
Courtesy of Anya Hindmarch

For handbag and accessories designer Anya Hindmarch, opening her new flagship on Madison Avenue in New York meant much more than simply filling a room with inventory. “I want people to feel comfortable, curious and loved!” exclaims the British designer, whose first store on London’s Walton Street, opened in 1987, paved the way for her 58 current locations worldwide.

The boutique, a move from her original NYC shop on East 60th Street, is the first in the United States to house both her seasonal and bespoke collections. The entire store has the feel of an artist’s studio, thanks to British architect/interior designer Ilse Crawford (the catalyst behind projects like Ett Hem hotel in Stockholm and Soho House New York). It’s a creative ambiance that was no accident.

“I wanted to recreate the sense of the design studio and have the craftsmen working in the store to reconnect the customer to how things are made,” says Hindmarch. “People have become too removed from the process. The craftsmen are the heroes in luxury, not the celebrities wearing the product.”

The custom arm—situated on the second floor of the two-story space—houses a workshop and craftspeople, who personalize leather pieces (boxes, wallets, luggage, key fobs) with messages, names, photographs or drawings in front of customers. Hindmarch would have it no other way. “It is about sealing a moment in time and making something to treasure,” she says. 795 Madison Ave.;

August 27, 2013
By Melissa Biggs Bradley | Shopping

Carrer Flassaders
Photo courtesy of Muna

A narrow stretch of pavement amid Barcelona’s grander thoroughfares, Carrer Flassaders, in the El Born neighborhood, has been transformed from nondescript back alley into major retail destination. A partial list of must-visit boutiques: Muna (No. 34), for children’s clothes; Gamaya (No. 36), for resortwear made for Ibiza or Majorca; and Les Enfants Terribles (No. 31), a seriously fashionable men’s and women’s boutique that sells straight-from-the-runway pieces from the likes of Ted Baker and Dior. The street’s glamorous shift reminds us that it’s never too late for a makeover—even in a metropolis more than 2,000 years old.

Bradley is the founder and CEO of the luxury travel outfitter Indagare. For more information, go to

See the DEPARTURES Guide to Barcelona »

July 02, 2013
By Maud Doyle | Shopping

Browsing the Brimfield Antique Show
Courtesy Gael Towey

From July 9 to 14, more than 6,000 antiques dealers will descend on the quiet New England town of Brimfield, Massachusetts, for the Brimfield Antique Show—one of the world’s largest open-air flea markets. Antiques dealers and collectors are an interesting lot (how many 19th-century bundt-cake pans does one really need?), but this is where the talent behind Ralph Lauren Home—and probably your favorite interior designers—comes to find singular pieces and inspiration, whether it’s a year for vintage industrial or Mad Men modern.

The show, made up of some 21 individually owned and operated fields, extends for a mile along either side of Route 20. Warehouse dealers drive in from all over the country to load up semi trucks, paying cash for birdcages, blown glass, mercury glass, Gustavian chairs, tables, consoles, floor lamps, textiles and other finds. Mary-Kate Olsen has been known to visit the fair to buy jewelry.

It is as much a trade show as a flea market, which means the pickers are professional (tip: get there early) and bargaining is common (open the negotiations by asking if the dealer would be willing to go lower). It also means that the apparent trends at Brimfield—like transferware platters, hurricane lamps or Deco credenzas—will probably show up in stores and shelter magazines later in the year, so a good eye can put you ahead of the curve.

Now in its 54th year, Brimfield happens three times annually (May, July and September). Eighteen of this round’s fields will open on July 9, with a few more following later in the week. The larger public usually swoops in over the weekend, after many of the pros have come and gone. July 9–14; Rte. 20, Brimfield, Massachusetts;

June 13, 2013
By Erin Schumaker | Shopping

Holland & Sherry Bespoke boxers
Photo courtesy of Holland & Sherry

Interior designer Muriel Brandolini, whose bold style has been lauded by Christopher Getty, Matt Lauer and Annette Roque and Crown Prince and Princess Pavlos of Greece, is making her mark with a different medium this spring: men’s undergarments. Rated M, her new line of boxer shorts ($89 each), features four styles that are hand-block printed in India on the softest of cotton. And though Brandolini doesn’t name her prints, she says their inspirations range from geometry to florals to the cinema. “This print reminds me of A Clockwork Orange,” she says of the pair pictured here. Available exclusively at Holland & Sherry Bespoke, 209 Elizabeth St.; 212-343-1261;

June 12, 2013
By Chadner Navarro | Shopping

Around the World with
Courtesy of

The new website is named after hardcore journalist Nellie Bly, who took a record-breaking trip around the world in 1889. Like its namesake, Project Bly champions wanderlust by bringing the streets—and the wares—of some of the world’s most electrifying cities to users in a thorough, discerning way.

Every two months, founder Rena Thiagarajan, a former San Francisco–based lawyer, reveals the inner workings of a featured destination via items (mostly home-decor pieces and accessories) and photography. She scours bazaars and flea markets for one-of-a-kind finds and partners with on-the-ground photojournalists to chronicle street style, food, art and architecture. The site launched with Mumbai, and La Paz, Bolivia, followed last month. (Kumasi, Ghana, is next.)

Thiagarajan talked with us about traveling the world and inspiring an adventurous spirit.

Q: Why did you launch Project Bly?
I’ve always loved design and travel and wanted to create something that brought them together. Project Bly is about adventure and travel, but it’s also about coming home.

Q: How do you choose the items?
We buy directly from vendors in the bazaars and craftspeople, and I choose accessories that would fit in a sophisticated home that seamlessly mixes antiques and vintage with contemporary pieces. I seek out beautiful textiles, art and objects that have stories and history and that will inspire people to go on their own adventures.

Q: How does the site differ from other e-commerce sites?
It’s not just a website that sells stuff. It’s an experience. We bring alive the bazaars and streets of a city through images taken by some of the world’s best street photographers. It is about putting objects in context and giving them story and history.

Q: How did you select the cities?
I started with Mumbai because it was a trip to Chor Bazaar, or “thieves market,” in Mumbai in January 2012 that resulted in my aha moment a couple of months later. The common thread that runs through all these cities it that they have been melting pots of cultures and important trading cities for centuries.

Q: What characterizes La Paz?
It is a city that really lives its life on its streets. I’m so excited about this collection, which includes vintage textiles as well as incredible silver and pewter objects that made their way to the streets of La Paz from a city called Potosí. Potosí was known as the Paris of South America in the 1500s and was one of the richest cities in the world because of its silver mines. Once the mines were depleted, many people migrated to La Paz in search of work, and I met many vendors in the markets whose families had come from Potosí years ago.

May 15, 2013
By Ingrid Skjong | Shopping

Vintage Finds at Martyn George
Derek Richmond

Situated on Grand Avenue in Chicago’s growing design district, Martyn George—a small shop specializing in vintage kitchenware—is a find in and of itself. Owner Johanna Brannan Lowe, a photo stylist and former photographer, sources the store’s “culinary objects” herself, ensuring that the offerings are anything but run-of-the-mill.

“There is the potential to research a piece and have your own story about it, as well as a story unknown and mysterious from other lives before,” she says. “It’s fascinating to me that there are objects existing from one or two centuries ago that are still in perfect condition.”

Those objects make up a well-edited, sophisticated inventory that includes etched-glass coupes from the 1960s, English glass cake stands, bone-handled carving knives, cocktail and wine glasses and enamelware. On the day the store, which is named after Brannan Lowe’s father, opened last summer, a pair of soapstone bed warmers sold to the local prop house; currently items like vintage oyster sticks and a handsome amber-glass decanter from the ’40s are up for grabs.

Perpetually on the hunt for the next treasure, Brannan Lowe travels to her native England (for, in particular, 19th-century ironstone china) and closer destinations, such as Texas, Wisconsin and Michigan, where she has a 156-year-old home in the town of Buchanan. Needless to say, she has an eye worth following. 1855 W. Grand Ave.; 312-340-4666;