Shopping & Services

  • Best Indie Boutique for Women

    Dear Fieldbinder

    Always ahead of the pack, Lara Fieldbinder knows what hip ladies want to wear even before they do. She stocks her Smith Street boutique, Dear Fieldbinder, with an eclectic mix of established designers (Twinkle, Lauren Moffatt) and daring up-and-comers (Margarita Saplala, Maurie & Eve), as well as cute pieces from her own DF label. And, unlike many other boutiques that… More >>
  • Best Indie Boutique for Men

    Steven Alan

    Who likes to iron? Nobody. Which is why Steven Alan's signature rumpled look wins us over time and again. Since opening his first eponymous shop in Soho in 1994, Alan, a native New Yorker, has steadily expanded his empire with boutiques scattered across Manhattan, Brooklyn, and East Hampton as well as three stores in Los Angeles. His famous relaxed-fit button-downs,… More >>
  • Best Haircut For Women

    Blackstones

    We know some salons today can be a bit gimmicky—they're more interested in selling their brands than the service. Blackstones does the same thing on its website, which seems to double as a video game with multi-clickable options. But don't let that stop you from booking an appointment at this East Village salon. The stylists are obviously the main draw,… More >>
  • Best Barbershop

    Persons of Interest

    When Giorgio Zocco (a/k/a Sal the Barber) died last year, it was feared that his Sal's Barbershop, a Carroll Gardens institution for more than three decades, would be lost forever. Enter television producer Steve Marks, who fell in love with all the old-school charm (such as the shop's classic red chairs, striped barber's pole, and—the pièce de résistance—a mural of… More >>
  • Best Vintage Jewelry

    Erica Weiner

    Since starting her business out of her Lower East Side apartment in 2005, jewelry designer Erica Weiner has quickly become the lady to seek out for vintage-inspired treasures at the most affordable prices. Her devoted fans rejoiced last fall when she opened her first brick-and-mortar shop, an intimate space in Nolita where antique wooden furnishings nicely complement her eclectic mix… More >>
  • Best Place to Buy Vinyl

    Academy Records Annex

    Warehouse spaces in Williamsburg are rarely put to such noble use. Academy Records Annex is a staggering experience: droves of mainstream and rare vinyl, stuffed to the breaking point inside rickety crates. If you own a turntable and live within a 20-block radius, you probably visit this den more than the supermarket, but wax neophytes need not be afraid: The… More >>
  • Best Bookstore (New)

    McNally Jackson

    Just when the future for brick-and-mortar book retailers is looking the most dismal, with the demise of Borders and the subway prevalence of iPads/Nooks/Kindles where thick, colorful Harry Potters once dominated, at least one bookstore is fighting back. Soho's McNally Jackson is a bright, two-level outlet that smells like espresso and has the community center vibe Barnes & Noble once… More >>
  • Best Gift Shop

    A.I. Friedman

    It's an art-supply shop at first glance, but A.I. Friedman boasts terrific gifts for everyone. Sure, painters/sculptors/mimes (why are you friends with mimes?) will delight in the drawing boards, craft kits, and endless varieties of paint mediums in stock, but this vast space also sells gorgeous picture frames, scrapbooks, laptop bags, furniture, artisan greeting cards, and more. The sales are… More >>
  • Best Toy Store

    Toy Tokyo

    Toy Tokyo is not really a toy store for those who like to play with their toys. This is a collector's paradise, where you can find rare Japanese monsters, vintage Star Wars dolls, and other oddball collectibles (such as a set of 12-inch figurines of the French electronic duo Daft Punk for $320). Even if you're not in the market… More >>
  • Best Bike Shop

    Bicycle Habitat

    Bike stores are not always friendly places. Some turn up their noses at customers looking for anything less than a $4,000 racing bike. In others, the air is so thick with messenger machismo, it can be difficult to breathe. But Bicycle Habitat is as unpretentious as it is capable, selling and servicing bikes for cyclists of every stripe from the… More >>
  • Best Art Supplies

    Blick

    Here's why we simply adore Blick: It's filled with lovely geniuses! Blick staffers know what we're looking for even when we don't know what it is we actually need. We say things like "I'm looking for that thing that works like a hook, but isn't a hook" and off they go to fetch it, though not before they ask what… More >>
  • Best Pet Store

    DoggyStyle NYC

    Ever look at a cute little pooch on the street and think, "Why, that canine is dressed better than me"? Most likely the dog shops at DoggyStyle NYC, where you can find all kinds of stylish getups, such as little cashmere turtlenecks, neon rain slickers, and, yes, even puppy pea coats. We dare you to find an ugly squeaky toy… More >>
  • Best Skateboard Shop

    Homage

    Whether you've been skating forever or want to learn how, Homage is the place where skaters of all levels can feel at home. Opened by Michelle Sauer and Jose Portes, both boarders themselves, the shop/skate-rat hangout sells top-of-the-line gear including decks, wheels, shoes, hoodies, backpacks, and headphones from trusted brands such as Etnies, Vans, and Toy Machine, as well as… More >>
  • Best Vintage Clothing

    Fluke - CLOSED

    "Très chic!" cooed a stylish young French woman to her friend, who was twirling about the vintage shop Fluke in a '70s sleeveless frock with a blue sash. Indeed, one would be hard-pressed to find anything that wasn't très chic at this Williamsburg boutique, where there's everything from adventurous asymmetrical pieces from the '80s to bold African prints to timeless… More >>
  • Best Used Clothing Store

    Buffalo Exchange

    We just can't tear ourselves away from Buffalo Exchange. The resale chain has numerous shops spread across 15 states (if you're ever in Seattle, that one rocks), and their outposts in the East Village, Williamsburg, and Chelsea are transformative experiences. The broad stores are neatly organized by genre and clothing category, but the plethora of styles and quality (from uppity… More >>
  • Best Hardware Store

    HBrickman & Sons

    Maybe you aren't a fix-it sort of person, but you need a hammer and the right nails to hang some new framed pictures properly. Maybe you are a fix-it sort of person, and you need specific handy gear for an extensive home revamp. Maybe you're in the market to paint something, get some keys copied quickly, or you just need… More >>
  • Best Head Shop

    Blue Nile

    For the basic, workmanlike needs of your average stoner, New York is easytown. There are more opportunities to buy a hitter or cheap pipe on a short walk down Canal Street than exist in some states in the union. But for the demanding connoisseur, options dwindle. And though dedicated heads might insist that better deals are to be found on… More >>
  • Best Shop to Buy Sex Toys

    Kiki De Montparnasse

    It's not really all about just sex; it's a sensual lifestyle that we all dream of living. The upscale boutique Kiki De Montparnasse in Soho awakens our senses and keeps us yearning for more, but if you're looking for a fast and easy way to get off, step aside. Attention, guys and gals: You might not have all the tools… More >>
  • Best Shoes That Won't Break the Bank

    Shoe Market

    Don't let this place's generic-sounding name fool you. From leopard-print booties to platforms with a rainbow-colored heel, Shoe Market is anything but boring. Owners Dana Schwister and Erika Vala, the ladies behind the inexpensive boutique Mini Mini Market, have impeccable taste in footwear and stock their shelves with affordable brands for both men and women, such as Jeffrey Campbell, Frye,… More >>
  • Best Clothes for Under $100

    Alter

    We're talking about Alter in Greenpoint. Owners Tommy Coles and Roy Caires's well-edited selection features cool, trendy styles for the fashion-conscious but budget-cautious customer. You'll be thrilled at what can be found for less than $100. For her, a soft little black dress by LnA for $70, a lightweight jumper with a cute ruffle neckline by Double Zero for $55,… More >>
  • Best Vintage Furniture

    RePOP

    Horse lamps, amoeba tables, severed baby-doll heads—you name it, and it's most likely at RePOP, the offbeat furniture and accessories store. Amble through its spacious warehouse to find such gems as an incredibly creepy Victorian-era medical examination chair, a 1950s glowing Mountain Dew clock, and a curious assortment of tiki masks. Fans of taxidermy will appreciate the myriad critters on… More >>
  • Best Junk Shop

    Film Biz Prop Shop

    Behind a locked gate in a basement in Gowanus lies a wonderland. The Film Biz Prop Shop has all the things you might count on a warehouse of second-hand whatnots to have: super-cheap drinking glasses, end tables, lamps. But as its name suggests, the Film Biz Prop Shop is no ordinary junk-recycling operation—it's stocked with pedigreed castoffs from old TV… More >>
  • Best Tailor

    Golden Star

    We walk by various tailor shops every day where they claim they can restructure from the basic hem to the most complex attire, but if this were true, we're sure it'd cost an arm and a leg (there goes your outfit). The Upper East Side storefront at the Golden Star features a faded burgundy Victorian–like frock that is nicely displayed… More >>
  • Best Flea Market

    Artists & Fleas

    Before Brooklyn became known as a flea-market haven a couple of years ago, it was already a flea-market haven. Williamsburg's older, cooler marketplace for new and used curiosities, Artists & Fleas has inhabited a 'Burg warehouse since 2003—first on North 6th and now on North 7th, just up the road from the waterfront gravel-ditch where artisanal pickles are sold alongside… More >>
  • Best Manicure and Pedicure

    William Nail Spa

    This city has as many nail salons as it does taxi cabs, so your options are anything but limited. However, when scouting a nail salon, there should be at least a couple of mandatory guidelines. For one, cleanliness is key—a nail salon should be immaculate, as should be its nail tools. Color longevity is also a must. If the polish… More >>
  • Best Spa

    Turning Heads Beauty Salon & Day Spa - CLOSED

    Even when you do find time to relax, where can you go in a busy city? Put your feet up, close your eyes, and drift off at Turning Heads Beauty Salon & Day Spa in historic Harlem, one of those New York gems that has loyal clients coming back year after year to experience good service at its finest. While… More >>
  • Best Reason to Get a Watch

    Dedegumo

    When you enter the Japanese boutique Dedegumo, the first thing you'll notice is a tiny workshop at the front, where expert watchmakers are hard at work. There's no assembly line here. Each timepiece is lovingly handmade from start to finish by only one artisan, so no two watches are ever the same. Founded in Kyoto, Dedegumo opened its first and… More >>
  • Best Lingerie

    La Petite Coquette

    If you're plagued by bra-fitting nightmares in which a woman who is not related to you fights her way into your dressing room and chastises you mercilessly, telling you the size you have chosen is wrong, all wrong, La Petite Coquette is the lingerie store for you. Frilly and feminine but also irreverent and definitely not conservative—they sell "good girl/bad… More >>
  • Best Paper/Stationery Store

    Paper Presentation

    Planning a wedding? No? You might want to reconsider your fear of commitment after a visit to Paper Presentation. The block-wide megastore is a wedding do-it-yourselfer's dream. Their selection of ribbon, stamps, stickers, and sparkly invitation pockets will inspire many more inserts into your mailing than you ever thought you would possibly need. The store also helps you stick to… More >>
  • Best Bathing Suit That Won't Fall Off

    Malia Mills

    As any lady will tell you, there is nothing more stressful than hunting for a bathing suit. Malia Mills is the only store we've found that puts a gal's mind at ease as soon as she walks in the door: Instead of the usual posters of voluptuous, tan models in string bikinis, she's greeted by a colorful collage of photos… More >>
  • Best Apothecary

    Miomia

    Having a beauty emergency? Dousing yourself with perfume just won't cut it? You could do one of two things: Put a paper bag over your head and pretend it's a new fad or head to Miomia, where delightful owner Katie Chang will hook you up with one of her many remedies. (We like the all-natural McBride Beauty Instant Rescue Balm,… More >>
  • Best Garden Supply

    GRDN

    Unless you're one of those blessed with a garden apartment, creativity is required when it comes to greening up your living space. GRDN is a sun-filled mini oasis in Boerum Hill that specializes in beautifying the inside of your home with exotic houseplants (check out the air plants that live without soil in a glass dome) and lovely pottery by… More >>
  • Best Moving Company

    Moishe's Movers

    Changing apartments is (and we hate to be indelicate here) a complete ass-pain. An informal survey around the Voice revealed past grievances with professional movers: abandoning boxes in rainstorms, breaking valuables, and just good ol' fashioned not showing up. Moishe's Movers offer a much more pleasant experience: Its employees are timely and professional, and they have a miraculously delicate touch… More >>
  • Best 99-Cent Store

    Jack's

    Even without a lingering recession, Jack's would be the de rigueur bargain store in town, thanks to the variety of cheap stuff they have that can fill your hopes and dreams—and house—for a fraction of what it would cost anywhere else. Why buy Fantastik for three-plus bucks when Jack's sells Fabulous for a mere dollar, and it's virtually the same… More >>
  • Best Kitschy Value Emporium

    Bag Man

    Bring $100 with you to Bag Man, the long-running 34th Street bargain spot, and you'll leave with enough glitzy household accessories to stage a dinner-theater production of Priscilla. Sparkly spatula holders, fake flowers, and glittery carnival-mask wall hangings are all there for "low, low prices," as the announcement keeps reminding you, in case you thought you were at Bergdorf's. The… More >>
  • Best Place to Pretend You're Preparing for Project Runway

    M&J Trimming

    It's hard not to think of yourself as a fashion designer when you stop in at M&J Trimming. The beauty at this "button store" is that the creative staffers can help you invent whatever look you wish to dream up. They have a vast selection of buttons, lace, rhinestones, and about any embellishment you can think of. Whether you need… More >>
  • Best Place To Pick A Flower

    Flower District

    What if it could be springtime in New York all year long? Such a magical place of lush and floral scents exists right here in Midtown. The Flower District, sandwiched between Sixth and Seventh avenues, is a gem and is simply the best place to buy flowers and plants at a discounted rate. These vendors sell to both commercial and… More >>
  • Best Candy Store

    Sockerbit

    Somewhere in Sweden, a wicked Nordic candy man is laughing. When Sockerbit, the minimalist Swedish sweet shop, came to Christopher Street earlier this year, we were giddy. A whole new selection of candies unbeknownst to us Americans was beckoning. So we entered the all-white store, which resembles something between a pharmacy and a salad bar, and loaded up two bags… More >>
  • Best Arcade

    Barcade Jersey City

    With our eternal struggle not to give up on our dreams and just work at a fast-food establishment, it might seem odd that we spend many of our hard-earned quarters making burgers. But that's the truth. Barcade Jersey City, the latest outpost of the craft-beer-and-video-game conglomerate (they're spreading to Philly next), has not only more games than its Williamsburg forebear,… More >>
  • Best Museum Store

    Guggenheim Store

    Put a price tag on any random gadget, display it in a museum, and we'll probably buy it. Forget the art; most museum stores are like Christmas morning for engineering dorks. There is undoubtedly something to buy that's inspired by Buckyballs, for one thing. And somehow, we always end up feeling like the best time to buy a Lego set… More >>
  • Best Knitting Store

    Lion Brand Yarn Studio

    Knitting has enjoyed quite a resurgence this year, thanks to the many intricately woven capes/vests/ponchos currently gracing high-end runways. And why spend a few thousand on a Rodarte dress when you can make it yourself through months of the endlessly repetitive motions? Really, though, knitting is quite therapeutic, and no craft mart offers a more welcoming shopping experience than Lion… More >>
  • Best Shop for Baby Gifts

    Pink Olive

    Tired of buying the same old baby stuff, cute as it might be, from registries or department stores? Pink Olive breaks the mold of wee children's stores in that you will secretly want at least half of its offerings for yourself, whether you have a child or not. Owner Grace Kang "is on a constant search for an eclectic mix… More >>
  • Best Tiny Store for Home Goods

    Lancelotti

    It is fitting that in the midst of Hurricane Irene fervor, when drugstores across the city were completely emptied of flashlights, tiny home-goods store Lancelotti, which exists in maybe 100 square feet of space, still had miniature LED flashlights on hand and stayed open late to sell us two. Along with your natural-disaster preparedness needs, Lancelotti is chock-full of adorable… More >>
  • Best Liquor Store

    Astor Wines & Spirits

    It can feel distinctly unsporting to root for the top dog. What's the fun in dubbing the Empire State Building the greatest skyscraper, the Yankees the best baseballers, Central Park the loveliest landscape? But sometimes the biggest, the brightest, and the booziest really is the best. Since Astor Wines & Spirits opened its new and much-improved location on Lafayette Street,… More >>
  • Best Cigar Store

    De La Concha

    "This is the golden age of cigar-making," says Ron Melendi, "and you can get cigars from other countries today as good as any ever made in Cuba." This is not heresy. He should know, because the Cuban-American Melendi family has been in the cigar business for more than 100 years, 46 of them in New York at De La Concha.… More >>
  • Best Ski/Snowboard Shop

    Emilio's

    There aren't a great many ski and snowboarding shops in the city, and if you go to one, you want it to be a store that has been around for a while. Well, Emilio's has been selling and renting ski equipment for more than half a century and in the process has added snowboarding to its specialties. Its complete service… More >>
  • Best T-Shirt Store

    Sport Prospect

    Sport Prospect is the best T-shirt shop in Brooklyn, where, believe us, they know T-shirts. In fact, if you've seen any of the thousands of shirts anywhere around New York that say "Brooklyn," it might interest you to know that this is the store where it all began. Carl Manco, who grew up in the neighborhood, owns the shop with… More >>
  • Best Place to Buy CDs

    Academy Records &CDs

    To be honest with you, we can't say that Academy Records & CDs is the best "used" CD store in the city because we don't know how many used CDs Academy really has—and it doesn't know, either. In addition to untold thousands of them, there are countless CDs still in shrink wrap—records, too, both old and new. And DVDs. It's… More >>
  • Best Tobacconist

    Nat Sherman

    New York smokers have been in full retreat for more than a decade now, their declining ranks banished from just about every kind of indoor establishment and even from public parks. For the beleaguered survivors of a dying tribe, there is no more comforting refuge than the palatial temple to the glamour of nicotine that is the Nat Sherman store… More >>
  • Best Animal Hospital

    West Village Veterinary Hospital

    The walls in the clean, white lobby of the West Village Veterinary Hospital are emblazoned with huge glamour shots of happy cats and dogs, and the place's loving regard for animals doesn't stop there. We lived with an ailing elderly cat for months, and during her frequent visits to the WVVH, the staff called her "Mama" and gave her all… More >>
  • Best Strategy From Here Through Maternity

    Uniqlo

    Instead of going in for pricey duds that either won't fit you in a few months or will depress you if they do, avoid the maternity-clothing racket altogether and think low-cost fast-fashion fabrics. Head to Uniqlo, the "new-style Japanese firm," whatever that means, for jeggings, jeans, and pants with elastic waistbands to carry you from the "is-she-getting-fat" weeks straight through… More >>
  • Best Bookstore (Used)

    East Village Books

    The year’s most heroic bookseller has to be East Village Books owner Donald Davis. In September 2011, a NYPL Battery Park librarian confronted a sketchy patron trying to steal books, ostensibly to trade for cash at used bookstores. The would-be thief dropped his bag and ran, leaving behind a bookmark from this shop. Librarians alerted Davis, so the next time… More >>
  • Best Kitchen Supply Store

    Whisk

    Kitchen stores can be either overwhelming or overly fancy—or both. For those of us who aren’t looking to stock a restaurant kitchen or become professional chefs, it can be daunting. But Williamsburg’s Whisk manages to strike a nice balance for home cooks seeking high-quality nonfussy things. The store is manageably sized and bright, and the inventory ranges from the high-end—beautiful… More >>
  • Best Shoe Repair

    North 11th Shoe Repair

    Sometimes you have to wear out your shoe leather in the hunt for the best spot. A friend of ours had a broken shank on her new platforms. Despairing, she took them to North 11th Shoe Repair, a shop tucked out of the way in Williamsburg. The shoe was fixed in one day for only $30. The cobbler is a… More >>
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