The Altman Building

The Altman Building


Neighborhood: Flatiron District
Type of Place: Sample Sales

Mother's Day (as we're *certain* you haven't forgotten—right?) is
Sunday, May 8—in other words, very soon. Still at a loss? Fear not;
we're here to help.

This year, Mom's devoted daughters can combine her present with the
gift of something eternally meaningful: quality time spent together.
so you'll be shopping—but don't try to tell us that shopping can't
as quality time.) The Billion Dollar Babes are hosting a sample sale on
Saturday. We went to their last one a few months ago, and we can
assure you it's truly good: gorgeous stuff, much of it from designers
never thought you'd be able to consider buying, at prices way better
than you'd normally be able to find. We suggest that you and your mom
get there as early as you can (as you'll see from the sale hours, you
have the option of arriving at an almost shockingly early time for a
Saturday—and believe us, even if you don't get there first thing,
will). It's not that great clothes won't be left later on, but sizes
an issue; we noticed that the non-model-size items were snapped up
fast, so if you and your mother do not both wear a size 2, grab some
coffee and head to the sale first thing in the day. (And if you are, in
both size 2, we're not sure we want to hear about it....!) You and Ma
have fun oohing and aahing over the merchandise; and when she finds
something she likes, you pull out your wallet for—voilà—an instant
Mother's Day gift you'll actually know she wants.

We don't mean to exclude Mom's loving sons from this process. You,
too, can come to the sale; but you won't be allowed into the dressing
room, which is one big, open space—in other words, utterly
unprivate—with a bunch of mirrors. (And the clothes for sale are only
women's designs, so unless you're a son who swaps dresses and
camisoles with his mama, you won't find much for yourself—but of
course if you are that son, your mom thinks you look fabulous no matter which
gender you're representing, and so do we!)

You must RSVP to this sale (yeah, it's that good). Go to to sign up.
If for whatever reason this won't work (other plans on Saturday; fear
communal dressing rooms; Mom thinks all outfits can and should be
bought through Land's End or L.L. Bean or Sears...), OK—we've got
other ideas. We love the elegant handmade bags from Elaine
Arsenault (305 E. 9th St., NYC; 212-228-3251; Then there are the great batik items at No
More Eggs (307 E. 9th St.; 212-777-0393) and the lovely housewares at
Pomegranate (125 E 7th St.; 212-677-3877). And if Mom loves to curl up
with a good book, we suggest Biography Bookshop (400 Bleeker St. @
W. 11th; 212-807-8655). Check out the archives of this site for more
info on each of these shops; and give your mom our best regards.
  - Pamela Grossman; May 6, 2005

The Altman Building
135 West 18th Street
(between 6th and 7th Aves)
New York, NY 10011