Oh New York, New York, you did it again! I loved my first visit to the Big Apple ten years ago and have been dying to get back ever since. This time, having become a full-time interior design fiend, I approached it rather differently.
I’m going to share my favourite experiences with you: what I did, where I ate, what I saw and, most importantly, where I went homewares shopping. Ready?
NYC has this constant buzz about it (I call it magic) – design inspiration is at every turn, in the architecture, the coolest bars, the museums, the fashion; all before you even step inside a furniture store. But, of course, I did!
An absolute highlight was my trip to Jonathan Adler in SoHo (one of three New York stores). Despite having been a fan of JA for I-don’t-know-how-long, coveting almost everything the brand produces and my own home’s décor being influenced by his style, I had never been in a Jonathan Adler store. I know, right? My purchases have been confined to online shopping. These days, you can buy Jonathan Adler products from a handful of Australian stores, but it’s just not the same as visiting a store.
It is a riot of colour and pattern. That’s a clichéd term but trust me, it really is! I found my happy place there. I could have stayed for hours. Truly. The staff were delightful; friendly, helpful and full of advice for my New York friend Molly, who came with me. She is looking to introduce colour into her new home and I couldn’t think of anywhere better to show her colour at work.
Another must-visit for design junkies is the iconic ABC Carpet and Home on Broadway. It encompasses two sites on opposite sides of the street and is huge. In fact, some say it’s the world’s largest rug and carpet store. There’s about eight acres of selling space. Phew.
I covered all of it, naturally, in the name of research. This is not the place to go shopping if you’re strapped for cash but, even if you are, it’s inspiration central. All the wares are organised in vignettes, or room sets, and they’re just wonderful. It’s an interiors addict’s dream.
The store also has an adjoining restaurant, ABC Kitchen, which is just as delightfully decorated. With a Michelin starred chef and regional, GMO-free and fair-trade menu, this place has a great reputation and books up well in advance. I wish I’d known this before my trip, so there’s my tip for you: book ahead and treat yourself.
Other stores worth checking out are Anthropologie (of course!) for its gorgeous mix of homewares and fashion, and for a really enjoyable shopping experience, Design Within Reach (although within reach of whose budget is debatable), Crate & Barrel (middle of the road homewares) and Room and Board (if you like that classic American, timber-heavy look, but with a modern edge). West Elm is one of my favourite homewares destinations in Sydney and I enjoyed checking out their New York store in Chelsea too.