Friday, February 26, 2010

Now Open...The Vault

Once held under lock and key, Lisa Perry is finally opening Madison Avenue’s best-kept secret: The Vault.

Late last year, Lisa transformed the former Madison Avenue Citibank into her flagship Manhattan store. Now, Lisa Perry is opening up the vault downstairs to customers offering discounted merchandise from current and past seasons with almost everything close to 75% off!

The Vault will feature $200, $300 and $400 racks and a table of pick-me-up items – accessories, books, trinkets - that range in price from $5 to $100. (There are even fake jewelry and money pouring out of the safety deposit boxes.)

The Vault will now be open all year long and continuously updated with new discounted merchandise. Lisa will also be selling her vintage finds from her travels throughout the world in the Vault as well.

The Vault
Monday – Sunday; 10am – 6pm, daily
976 Madison Avenue (bet. 76th & 77th St.)

-Lauren Dimet Waters

Thursday, September 24, 2009

CHOCHENG Sample Sale on the UES

Chocheng Sample Sale
Enjoy 70% off the spring/summer 2009 collection.

September 24-26, Thursday-Saturday

Thursday & Friday 11am-7pm

Saturday 11am-5pm

51 E. 63rd St., (bet. Madison & Park Aves.)

It's not often you see a sample sale on the UES so I just had to check it out for myself this morning. I found some beautiful items at amazing prices! The black and white stunning cashmere coat pictured above was originally $2400, and now is $600!

A bit about the designer: Cho Cheng, has recently been named one of China' s top 5 designers and founded his eponymous fashion house, CHOCHENG in 2007. This talented young designer makes beautifully tailored fashions for elegant women.

Stop by for the SAMPLE SALE as well as for a preview of the Spring/Summer 2010 - fresh off the runway at Bryant Park last week. The inspiration was Breakfast at Tiffany's (one of the dresses looks like a Tiffany box) and features impeccably tailored jackets and ensembles with unexpected details, cocktail dresses and couture evening gowns. All items made in New York, using all natural fiber and handcrafted fabrics imported from England, Scotland and Ireland.

- Lauren Dimet Waters

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

XOXO GossipGirl! My NYC Tour Of Gossip Girl Sites

And who am I? That's one secret I'll never tell. You know you love me. Xoxo, GossipGirl

Last Friday I was invited by On Location Tours to partake in the NYC Gossip Girl Tour. Now, before you say or think anything...I have to admit, I have watched maybe a total of one hour of the show (spread out over 5-10 minute increments) so I went in rather blind. And old. As in almost as old as some of the mothers who brought their teenage daughters. However, I have to say...the combination of our fabulous and entertaining tour guide, the incredibly nice people I met on the tour and our air-conditioned luxury bus made for quite the enjoyable afternoon.

All 44 of us met under the wrought iron gate of the New York Palace Hotel (where some of the colorful cast of characters live and where the kids hang out at Gilt eating grilled cheese with truffle oil sandwiches). From there our entertaining and in control tour guide Meghan gathered us all on the bus and explained we would be seeing over 40 locations in a little over 3 hours!

We began our tour on the Upper East Side, of course. Meghan opened with "What's up Upper East Siders!" In the busload of mostly foreign tourists, I am pretty sure I was the only UES resident, but I was more than happy to play tourist for the and all. We headed up Madison to see important stores like Vera Wang and restaurants like Centrolire. Other sites to note were Synod of Bishops Russian Church (the back entrance of the fictitious Constance school), the Museum of the City of New York (the front entrance of the school), The Met steps (where the mean girls eat lunch consisting of apples and yogurt), 1136 5th Ave. (Blair Waldorf's home) and 74th at Madison (the exterior of the Archibald residence).

Some locations we saw from the bus and for some we disembarked for picture taking. We even made stops at Dylan's Candy Bar (I resisted) and Henri Bendel's (I did not resist as the 20% off coupon we were given was too good to pass up).

While on the bus we were also shown clips from the show highlighting some of the locations we had just seen. For those of us who are not show fanatics, this was a great help and really put things in perspective. I thought I recognized some of the locations! Wait, are those high school kids really drinking at The Campbell Apartments at Grand Central? You betcha! We saw quite a few restaurants, stores and of course drinking establishments where the upper crust kids like to imbibe.

While the show is about privileged teenagers on the Upper East Side and that is where most of the filming takes place, it is shot all over Manhattan so the tour took us everywhere from the UES, to midtown, to the Flat Iron District, to the East Village, Nolita and even the Bowery. The tour ended at Union Square. Over 40 sites in 3.5 hours! I was wiped by the end. However, I have to say, On Location Tours and Meghan did a great job. Thanks for the fun afternoon! It was fun being a tourist a while. Oh and if Gossip Girl ain't your thing...they also offer a Sex and the City tour.

xoxo, The Upper East Side Fashioniste
Fridays and Sundays at 12 Noon
$38 (+ $2 ticket fee)

P.S. Gossip Girl: On Location Tours is hiring! They are looking for an extremely outgoing, personable, fun actress in her 20's as tour guide for bus tour of Gossip Girl sites. Stand up comedy experience a plus. Tours are approximately 3.5 hours in length. Position is part time -- three or four tours per month. Candidate must be willing to obtain New York City tour guide license. Email acting resume and headshot to Headshot can be attached, but RESUME MUST NOT BE ATTACHED.

- Lauren Dimet Waters

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Little Bo Bu and the Duck

OK, I admit I normally stay far away from covering men's and children's apparel, but let's face it...behind every fashionista Mom worth her grain is a gaggle of well-dressed children. I mean you can't be considered a true lover of fashion if your offspring look they are are wearing rags, right? When I heard designer Rachel Roy rave about the amazing turn of the century inspired children's clothing store Bu and the Duck I had to check it out. Lo and behold I was thrilled to discover there is an outpost of this Tribeca boutique now on the Upper East Side (316 E. 84th St.) so my trusty dog Nigel (and partner in fashion crime) and I just had to go check it out!

Walking into the store is like stepping back in time. A time before there was a Gap Kids and mass produced, cheaply made children's togs void of any style. Apparently, Bu and the Duck is a cult favorite for in-the-know New York moms. All of the clothing is made by owner and designer Susan Lane who was inspired by American children's clothing of the 30's and 40's. The racks hold precious knit jumpers, plaid overalls, darling dresses and adorable stripped tees....perfect for layering. In fact, I was really hoping for something in my size! The shelves are are filled with top-quality cotton tops, hand-knit sweaters and leggings, Italian leather cobbled shoes (like Mary Janes) & boots, and beautiful hand-crafted wooden toys. Truly exquisite.

If you are like me and think little boys get totally ripped off in the fashion department and all the cute clothes are reserved just for girls, then this is the store for you! In fact, I'm expecting a little bundle of boy this fall and can't wait to go back and blow a ton of coin on my new addition. It's not cheap by any means, but kid will be worth it and they do have some impressive sales. Bu and the Duck should also be your go-to place for baby shower gifts...what a way to upstage the other gifts!

Don't worry, I promise this will not turn into a Mommy shopping column!

Bu and the Duck
316 E. 84th St. (bet. 1st & 2nd Aves.)

- Lauren Dimet Waters

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

A Second (and Third) Chance

I walk by A Second Chance Designer Resale Boutique at 1109 Lexington Ave. (between 77th & 78th streets) every time I get off the subway on my way home. Truth be told, I hardly do anything but look straight ahead because I am afraid to glance at the puppies in the pet store window next door. My heart aches for them, so I avert my eyes and look for the Tasti-D-Lite (of which I have a slight addiction...OK, major) a few doors down.

However, I am always up for a good second hand store, especially since I am constantly searching for a discontinued Chanel bag I hope I will someday locate. Well, if you are in the market for a Chanel bag then this is your store. Mind you, I think the bags are still really pricey. That's why I joke that I have given the place a second, third and fourth chance. Upon my last visit I noticed the bags had marked down...slightly. Most of the Chanel bags are $1,999 which still seems like a lot considering they are used not a ton cheaper then buying one retail. Since times are tough I imagine a lot of women on the Upper East Side are looking to unload some of their luxury handbags in favor of some quick cash. I can also tell you these bags are the real deal.

While there are designer clothes and shoes at A Second Chance (I saw a fantastic Fall '08 Dolce & Gabbana dress for $199), the real focus at this tiny second floor store are the bags! Besides around 50 Chanel bags I saw some Valentino for about $1299, a YSL black suede Muse for $750 and a few Hermes Birkin bags for about $5500. There is also a huge Louis Vuitton selection if you are so inclined and at my last visit, a massive LV 70cm suitcase for $1299 (mind you, who wants a suitcase these days with no wheels? I don't care what the label is) was proudly displayed.

If you like to dig then I would check out this boutique on a regular basis. There are some real fashion finds jammed onto the overcrowded racks. Also, if you are into Chanel jewelry, the selection is very impressive.

I would recommend giving A Second Chance at least that...a second chance. Maybe a third or fourth too because with so much merchandise prices are bound to come down even more sometime soon.

A Second Chance Designer Resale Boutique
1109 Lexington Ave. (between 77th & 78th Sts.), 2nd Floor
New York, NY 10075

- Lauren Dimet Waters