M & J Trimming

Neighborhood: West 30s
Type of Place: Accessories


NYC is overflowing with costume designers, creative seamstresses and tailors, sewing gurus and creative types that can turn a handful of ribbon and feathers into an artwork worth gallery exposure. Not so for everyone though, which is why places like M & J Trimming is such a fabulous place to visit.

Praised for its super-high ceilings, flattering lighting and impeccably-organized inventory which is a totally rare find for a shop jammed with tiny doodads like buttons, beads, thread, and appliques, M&J is the perfect go-to for both seasoned craftspeople and novices alike. It is a treasure-trove teeming with so many more neat things that even those who feel they don’t have a creative bone in their body are bound to find some inspiration in this venue.

Customer service has been reviewed here and there as being lacking and even a bit lazy, but remember: a store like this, with such a versatile and detailed inventory of so many miniscule items can cause a bit of the jaded syndrome to seep into its employees. Stocking this merchandise has got to become mundane and tiresome at some point, so give these hard workers some credit. Also, have patience;  finding the items you are searching for amid so many goodies may be just as challenging as landing the salesperson that can assist you with your particular project – who by the way probably knows more about a single button than you thought possible.

Some people also tend to cringe at M & J’s pricing, but the quality along with the probability that you have searched everywhere else in the city only to find what you need here should soothe your cost qualms. Anyway, in my opinion prices are not so bad. Last time I was there, I purchased 2 yards of trim for $10, and while it may seem extravagant, I also laid out $45 dollars for eight of the most eclectic buttons I have ever laid eyes on. I was on a mission to revamp a fire-engine red coat I had purchased years ago, and although I was not looking for these specific buttons, they screamed out “Match!” as soon as I saw them – and that was the point of no return.

Perhaps the most unique element of M & J Trimming is their purchasing system. When you walk in, you are handed an empty bag with a barcode on it that you use to fill up and scan prices with as you shop. You then haul your goodie-bag to a cashier who will scan the bag’s barcode and your purchase is complete in the blink of an eye.

Whether you are looking for a specific ribbon, sticker, stud or rhinestone or just in seek of a place to browse and round up some fantastic ideas for beginning or restarting a project, M&J’s got all the trimmings – and then some. I encourage you to set aside a few hours one afternoon and bask in the infinite greatness of creativity.

  - Janice Bevilacqua

M & J Trimming
1008 6th Avenue
New York, NY 10018
(212) 391 6200