Type of Place: Women's Clothing
Description: I was walking down lower Broadway the other day, sadly contemplating a
giraffe. Don't get me wrong, I like giraffes very much; they're lovely
and adorable, and they seem sweet-natured. But this particular giraffe
was the mascot for Toys R Us, which has taken residence where Tower
Records used to be; and that makes me sad. Tower Records rocked in every
way (good selection, great hours, casual and non-corporate attitude...).
I miss it; and I fear for a New York that would not or could not
sustain that store.
A few blocks later, I spotted Andy's Chee-pees, a new-and-vintage
outlet. Ah-ha--a blast from the past that's still kicking. I shopped at
Andy's when I was a kid in the 80s. It's moved south a little bit from
where it was then, but it looks basically the same from the outside. I
wondered: Is it still good? Is it still cheap? And what might it have for
Soon after entering, I came upon a black halter dress with decorated
with purple spiderwebs, from Rock Steady. Cute, and definitely a decent
choice for the holiday--but it was $75. Hmm. If you think you'd wear it
for non-Halloween occasions, or if it could be your Halloween costume
for several years, it's worth considering.
I moved on to the vintage dresses. A pretty navy cocktail dress with
pearl trim was $95--not especially cheap, but it's a nice, classic dress
and could work for weddings, cocktail parties, benefits, etc., for
years to come. But hey--why was a purple, orange, green, and yellow
mumu-type garment the same price? Good for Halloween; not much good for much
else that I could think of. I started to wonder about the pricing
decisions being made.
My confidence in Andy's was boosted by a red-plaid sleeveless
70s-vintage blouse: cute, versatile, in good shape, and a very reasonable $30.
Nearby, I found a total deal: a new wine-colored taffetta floor-length
skirt, from Cheryl New York, for $45. It was dramatic, elegant, and very
pretty; it looked like it would cost twice what it did. (It's also
available in black, but in my opinion the wine is much more distinctive.)
Halloween, maybe--but I think it would be a great choice for any number
of winter-holiday parties, right through New Year's Eve. Hell, wear it
again for a Valentine's Day date!
Also from Cheryl New York were silver or gold metallic very-mini skirts
($32), for those of you who pretend that you're dressing up for
Halloween when you're really just trying to look as sexy as you can (come on,
'fess up; we've all done it!). If you can pull these off, more power
to you. And if you can, you're probably young enough to be hanging out
in nightclubs, too; these will work fine there.
"Sugar, we're closing," said a cashier. Damn; so many more racks to
check out! Feigning deafness, I quickly spotted two great Halloween
options: perfectly preserved Boy Scout shirts in various sizes, complete with
multiple badges ($26); and a funny/terrible flounced blouse with ugly
embroidery reading "Costa Rica," a great centerpiece for any "tacky
tourist" get-up. But OK, the cashiers have a right to go home; so I
headed out. Is Andy's still good? Often, yes. Still cheap? If you look
carefully. Halloween options? No limit; use your imagination.
-Pamela Grossman; Oct 20, 2007
(betw. 3rd and 4th Sts.)
New York, NY 10012