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MERCHANDISEEdgy fashions; vintage wear; music; gifts; shoes; accessories; books
HOURS/TIMESVaries by shop
PRICEVaries by shop
SUBWAYAstor Pl. (6); 2nd Ave. (F); Third Ave. (L); Delancey St.- Essex St. (F, J, M, Z); Grand St. (B, D); Bowery (J, Z)
The Lower East Side was the first port of call for successive waves of 19th and 20th century immigrants to New York; its tight-knit neighborhoods like Little Italy and Chinatown are testaments to the enduring multiculturalism of the area. Adding to the already cosmopolitan mix of cultures, in the 1960s, the breakaway East Village part of the area became a hotbed of counterculture famous for its folk music and later punk scene. Though the gritty, artsy vibes and immigrant populations have both dwindled as hipsters and yuppies began taking over, these streets are still packed with nifty original finds like Economy Candy (retro sweets) and Kiehl’s (which has been dishing out skincare products from this part of town since the 1850s), as well as scores of vintage clothing and vinyl shops. Gentrification has also brought a slew of cool new boutiques by up-and-coming designers, like funky menswear shop Odin New York and vintage-inspired dress shop Foley+Corinna.
USE A PURCHASE FROM HERE FOR
Funky gift; NYC-street fashion statement
WHY WE LIKE IT
This is a great place to hunt for funky, one-of-a-kind items. Although increasing gentrification has brought a less colorful selection of stores, many of the older local businesses (from Chinese grocers to vintage poster vendors) still offer gems to adventurous shoppers. And besides the shopping, this is a fantastic area to explore if you want to get a feel for NYC’s past and present: down-at-the-heel tenement neighborhoods have now cross-pollinated with glossy high rises and chic hipster hangouts.
GOOD TO KNOW
Want to mix a bit of history and culture into your shopping extravaganza, or simply need help getting your bearings? Check out the East Village Visitors Center (eastvillagevisitorcenter.com) for a free guided tour of the neighborhood.
All information within this website was checked for accuracy at the time of publication. But since the world moves quickly, things may have changed. Pardon us for any errors as we strive to give you the most up-to-the-minute details!