Amidst the chicest clubs and restaurants of New York City’s Meatpacking District sits the bright pink home of an even bigger trend. Blow, situated at 342 West 14th Street, is just one of the many essential blow-out stops getting penciled into the overflowing schedules of Gotham’s hippest women. Blow-dry bars are taking the wash, cut, color and style hair-salon cycle to a one-stop, celeb-worthy style service.
“In New York City, there is always an occasion for a blowout,” Diana Pratasiewicz, a manager at Blow, says above the roar of blow driers and quaint music. “Whether it’s an important meeting, or you’re not feeling so great and you just want to give yourself an instant makeover, or it’s an event with the girls.” Put simply, there’s never a not good time for a blowout, except possibly when you’ve just had one.
It’s pretty common for social media managers to embarrass their employers by forgetting to cancel pre-scheduled tweets during national tragedies, and heaven knows targeted online advertising has embarrassed more than one brand. But what about old-fashioned newsprint? Doesn’t someone scan the ads for blunders? Apparently not.
Behold, an advertisement squirreled away in the corner of today’s Daily News: Macy’s is advertising a special 50-percent-off discount on a Casa Essentials pressure cooker.
Pressure cookers have been in the news this week, because that’s what the perpetrators used in Monday’s Boston Marathon bombing. That’s actually one of the few things we do know about the case.
Moving through Midtown Manhattan on a summer afternoon with Maryam Basir was an opportunity to walk a few blocks in someone else’s shoes—in this case, peep-toe oxford platforms with five-and-a-half-inch heels. As she passed down 38th Street on the way to a casting call, she carried a rolled-up yoga mat and pulled a small suitcase containing three changes of clothing. Men swiveled their heads for a second look. Women gave her outfit—sheer white long-sleeve blouse, spangled black bow tie, coral shorts—appraising glances. She didn’t seem to notice.
“Among young models, Maryam stands out,” said Scott Wojcik, a casting director who hired her for DSW’s national advertising campaign. “There are two kinds of models, ‘relatable’ and ‘aspirational.’ Maryam is both. That’s extremely rare.”
The Eight-Day Week
The era of the department store may be nearing its end, thanks to the rise of online commerce, but let’s focus on what they can fly overhead one day a year, not their high overhead on the other 364. Macy’s, per Thanksgiving tradition, celebrates the holiday with balloons of Hello Kitty, SpongeBob SquarePants and Spider-Man, Read More
After the Runway
As New York shovels up the Fashion Week embers around town after the onslaught, The Observer still has a few loose ends. One thing we wanted to know in all the ruckus was how the new comers had fared.
Kara Laricks, the winner of NBC reality show Fashion Star, is certainly a new face in the crowded sea of designers. Under the tutelage design mentors Jessica Simpson, John Varvatos and Nicole Richie, Ms. Laricks convinced the buyers’ judging panel from H&M, Macy’s and Saks Fifth Avenue that her creations were worthy of the $6m capsule collection award. The show was a hit: Nielsen TV Ratings Data reported 4.81 million viewers for the finale, and NBC has already renewed Fashion Star for a second season and begun casting. We caught up with Ms. Laricks after her first presentation at Runway@Pier 57 last week to get all the buzz about her début. Were her masculine-feminine-meets-1920s-Japanese matchbox looks a triumph or did she she fall flat?
What did it feel like to finally present your first bona fide fashion week presentation?
I felt vulnerable! In the past, if my collection was not well received, I was under the protective wing of The Academy of Art University, NBC, Saks Fifth Avenue, Macy’s, H&M … this time, the pressure was all on me. However, there was never any question as to whether or not I would continue designing post Fashion Star and I knew “sticking my neck out there” would be worth the risk no matter what the response. Now that my first collection has been shown at New York fashion week and the reviews are rolling in, I feel exhilarated, proud and accomplished. Can’t wait for the next!
For those of us living in the outer boroughs, navigating Manhattan during the holidays can serve as a great reminder as to why we migrated off the island in the first place. New Years Eve, St. Patrick’s Day, Halloween, Thanksgiving…the term “amateur hour” was practically invented to describe the hoards of revelers who descend upon NYC like a plague of locusts to “celebrate” these annual events by getting as drunk as humanly possible and clogging up the sidewalks and public transit systems.
Now, most of the time, this does not pose too much of a problem for Brooklynites and Queens residents, who would just as soon stay in their district anyway, throwing Skrillex-themed rooftop parties.
But the 4th of July poses an issue for non-Gotham-dwellers: since 2009, the incredible light show thrown by Macy’s has been held on the Hudson River, making it almost impossible to view from the top of a Brooklyn Heights townhouse.
Some of us aren’t Scrooge McDuck-wealthy. Some of us don’t have the time/wherewithal/patience to deal with the crowds on the West Side Highway who gather to view the Macy’s July 4th Fireworks every year.
EMC Corporation is expanding by about 37,000 square feet at 2 Penn Plaza, where it bases the bulk of its Manhattan operations.
The firm is a Fortune 500 company that specializes in information technology and cloud computing services and is growing according to people familiar with its space needs.
It’s the great white whale of Manhattan retail.
Aside from Walmart, Nordstrom is the store every retail broker in the city dreams of harpooning and reeling into a new home. One prominent broker familiar with the store, the amount of space it needs and the rents it would probably be willing to pay estimates that the commission for handling its lease would be around $10 million.
But like a leviathan lurking beneath the waves, the department store has offered only fleeting glimpses around the city, most notably at several development sites and a few existing assets with the capacity to accommodate its sprawling footprint.
The scuttlebutt nowadays: Nordstrom is contemplating one of two leases, one at the West Side rail yards with the Related Companies or another at the base of Extell Development’s soaring new residential tower now rising at 157 West 57th Street.