ShopNYC Tours Launches Webcam Shopping Experiences!

ShopNYC Tours is grateful to have grown so much over the past two years! We realize, however, that many people who’d like to experience the city simply don’t have the time or money to visit. So we wanted to come up with a way that these people could still experience NYC: with our Webcam Shopping Experiences! These experiences allow people to shop in a unique, New York City boutique from anywhere in the world–through webcam. That’s right–you just set up an appointment to web chat–or web SHOP–with a boutique specialist/sytlist, logon to Skype.com, and SHOPNYC!

We will actually have a phone/e-mail consultation with you prior to your web appointment to find out what your general style is (classic, bohemian, trendy), what you’re looking for (dresses, jeans, handbags) and what sizes you wear in certain items. If you have a boutique that you’ve discovered online and you’re just dying to shop in it, we can arrange that for you as well. There’s also the option to add a model with your measurements to your shopping experience so you can actually see (in 3D) what the clothing will look like on YOU!

We realize that online shopping is popular, but it can also be extremely overwhelming and difficult. You’ll spend hours and hours browsing through 2-dimensional websites in the hopes that once something is shipped it will fit you correctly! Webcam shopping experiences give you the opportunity to avoid all of the downfalls of online shopping while enjoying personal style tips, the boutique ambiance (which is much more fun than staring at a computer screen) and a more unique selection of fashion than you can imagine.

If you’d like to set up a webcam shopping experience, visit www.shop-nyctours.com/webcam-shopping-experience for more information. We look forward to shopping with you!

Private Chic Boutique Tour for a Lovely Lady from Australia

It was an extremely cold day and the first shopping tour of 2010.  A woman from Australia and her husband wanted to do something of interest but unfortunately their choices were very different.  The woman wanted to shop and the man wanted to take photographs of the city.  It just so happens that ShopNYC Tours has a friend who gives photography tours/lessons so it worked out perfectly for everyone!

We started our shopping tour walking through the beautiful and historic Washington Square Park and up University Place to Pia.  This woman was serious about getting a new wardrobe since she had recently lost some weight.  I figured this would be a great boutique to start in and get a feel for her style since they have a selection of both classic and trendy looks.  Pia also has some amazing accessories that work perfectly with almost any style.  After trying on a few of the blouses (which were a little on the trendy side) and not having much luck, I pointed her in the direction of one of their skirts.  She said that she was looking at things for work and I knew that with a grey pencil skirt you couldn’t go wrong!  It was a success.

From Pia, we headed over to Ibiza, but their funky, vintage-inspired clothing and accessories weren’t quite working.  It was good to see what wasn’t working, however, because from this point of the tour and onward, I knew where we needed to shop!

I took her south of Washington Square Park to LaGuardia Place where we made two stops.  The first was Helianthus where they had some amazing sales happening.  We found a few trendier items that she took a chance with and tried on, but they didn’t quite work.   The second stop was Purdy Girl and it ended up being a gold mine for her.  Not only did they have a 50% off storewide sale happening, but she found everything from tops to dresses to jeans.  We discovered that the shift dress was THE perfect fit for her and she ended up purchasing several of these Jackie & Michelle O numbers.

Following Purdy Girl, we headed down to Soho to the New York Look.  This store is great because 1.) it’s huge but not department store huge and 2.) they have a wide range of sizes for each item like a department store but, again, it’s not one!  She tried on several dresses by Elie Tahari, Tory Burch, and Nicole Miller along with jeans by 7 for All Mankind.  New York Look–like Purdy Girl–was a very successful stop!

After finding some great stand-out pieces, she expressed that she wanted to find some basic staples at reasonable prices.  I asked her if they had a Zara in Australia and to my surprise, she had never heard of it.  I knew this would be the perfect place for her to get basics.  It definitely was.  She found a black turtleneck and some black skinny pants that fit her like a dream.

Zara was lacking in shirts, however, so we had time for one more quick stop across the street at Mango–another shop that, to my surprise, she hadn’t heard of.  I figured it would be a good place to find blouses and it worked.

If you’re looking to find a new wardrobe that suits you, take a private shopping tour with us!  We’ll focus on your style and shops that work best for your body type and your budget.  To inquire, visit www.shop-nyctours.com/contact.  We look forward to shopping with you!

Customized Shopping Tour – Couple from Germany

So I have to admit that our tours are more popular with women, however, we do get the occasional request for tours that offer shopping for men too!  Such was the case with the couple from Germany.

They were a lovely married couple in there 30s/40s and the lady had a strong love for trendy fashion whereas the guy definitely appreciate a simpler, classic style.  I decided it would be best to start our shopping with the the women’s store since shopping for women can be a little more difficult and time consuming than shopping for men.

We began the tour in Greenwich Village at Pia, where I knew the lady would find some beautiful handbags and some very unique clothing by Debra Moorefield as well.  She ended up taking a strong liking to one of their Treesje handbags (which I love) along with some of their beautiful Scottish cashmere.  She actually ending up purchasing a black cashmere sweater that could be worn several ways (3 to be exact) which made it a very, very practical purchase.

Moving on from Pia, we headed next door to Ibiza where there was a huge sale going on since they’re moving to their new store very soon.  The lady tried on several of their tops by Custo Barcelona along with some of their beautiful coats.  It was another successful stop as she walked away with a dress, top and a beautiful black trench with mesh detail.

After Ibiza, we walked across the street to La Petite Coquette where, although a women’s lingerie store, was equally fun for the guy to shop, of course!  The owner, Rebecca, was there and it was a pleasure to finally meet the creator of this gem-of-a-shop.  Again, the lady walked away with some beautiful underwear by La Perla and beautiful hosiery by Wolford.

From here, the limo picked us up and I was told that we needed to find snow boots for the guy since it was due to start a blizzard at any moment.  I took them to Keito in Soho on West Broadway and it was a little too fashion forward for the guy’s liking.  So instead we went up the block to Reno fashions, where I knew they had more casual, sporty boots and shoes.  Here they bought a classic pair of black boots for the guy along with some colorful Ugg boots for their two daughters.

It was back to the fashion track after this stop.  The lady specified that she needed jeans so we headed down to Flying A in Soho where I knew they had a huge selection including:  Domino, Notified, Paper Denim, 2 Blocks South, Maje, Joe’s Jean’s, and Eden.  She tried on a few pair while the guy browsed the men’s selection but they didn’t have much luck on sizes.

We walked down the block and I suggested they take a peek in Olive & Bette’s since we were waiting on the limo.  I knew they would be able to find different sizes for Joe’s Jeans here and also James Jeans as well.  It was a success!  She found jeans and a few cute tops to match which I believe were Plenty and Splendid.

After this stop, the lady insisted that she was through shopping and that we needed to focus on her husband.  They enjoyed a glass of champagne while in transit and then the limo dropped us off at Inven.tory which ended up being a little too trendy for his liking.  We were running out of time so we couldn’t get over to the East Village from Soho and have enough time so I suggested a last-minute stop in Noho at Save Khaki on the way back uptown to their hotel.  It was a perfect fit–figuratively and literally.  The guy was pleased with the style and the sizes also fit him well.  He ended up purchasing a few sweaters, shirts and a couple pairs of pants.  So although the lady left the tour with a small new wardrobe, the guy ended up doing well for himself too.

If you’d like to schedule a customized shopping tour for you and your hubby (or boyfriend), visit our website at www.shop-nyctours.com for more information.  Happy New Year and we look forward to shopping with you!

Recessionista Finds and Birthday Bargains!

Last week’s Recessionista shopping tour was for 3 lovely ladies from New Jersey and one of them was celebrating their 35th birthday.  They told me that they visit NYC all the time, but that they wanted to try something different–so that’s why they came on the tour.  They said that they usually don’t get out of Midtown because they really just don’t know where to go.  I told them that they came on the right shopping tour!

Since the tour was scheduled just for the three of them and they were going to Dashing Diva on the Upper East Side afterwards, we started the tour in Soho and worked our way backwards to Union Square.  The first stop I took them to was UniQlo.  They had never been before (since it just opened in the last year and it’s the only one in the US) so they were surprised to find such great prices for such quality items.  I explained to them that the latest designer to come to UniQlo was Jil Sander with her +J line. 

After UniQlo, which is more about basics, we headed to TopShop which was definitely the opposite with their funky furs and dazzling sequins.  They explored all three levels and were especially anxious to see the Shoe Lounge. 

After a lot of browsing, we moved on to Nolita and headed to The Market NYC which is also known as the Young Designers’ Market.  They absolutely LOVED it.  From the unique knit hats, to some lovely CZ studs, to the sweet-smelling body butters, none of them left empty-handed.  This stop, as usual, was definitely one of the most successful. 

From Nolita, we headed up to Necessary Clothing in Noho.  They browsed for a bit and then it was on to Monk, near Washington Square Park.  They really enjoyed exploring all the unique vintage and consignment and the birthday girl bought herself a beautiful silk scarf. 

From here we explored the Shoe District and then headed up Sixth Avenue to 14th Street, where we stopped at Gem Story and they bought some really cute jewelry with bargain, bargain, bargain prices.  (I also bought my grandmother a pretty snowman pin!) 

The next stop was Remix shoe store on 14th Street where one of the ladies bought a really fun and funky pair of rain boots (which was very appropriate since it was pouring the whole day!)  From there, we made a quick stop at Strawberry and then I escorted them uptown to Macy’s where they wanted to shop before getting their manicures and pedicures at Dashing Diva.

Despite the rain and the cold, it was a fun tour and they had the chance to shop places that they hadn’t shopped before.  If you’re a bargain-lover and would like to take our Recessionista Tour, visit our website at www.shop-nyctours.com/tours for more information.  Hope to shop with you soon!

Customized Shopping Tours – Like Mother, Like Daughter!

Last weekend’s customized shopping tours were very unique experiences.  (It was fun to create new routes and change things up a bit!)  I had two mothers book tours to take with their teenaged daugthers but they had some special requests as far as their daughters’ styles and interests. 

On Friday, the mother of the 12-year-old girl (they were visiting from California) requested that we visit some of the Teen Tour stores but also some boutiques a la the Chic Boutique Tour that were unique to New York.  So we picked them up in a towncar at their hotel and headed to Henri Bendel first since they had never been there.  I explained to them that even though they had shopped on Fifth Avenue, Bendel’s was a must-see since 1.)  it’s the holiday season and it’s decorated beautifully and 2.)  it changes weekly with the different designers they invite to showcase on the main floor.  They ended up purchasing some of Bendel’s signature holiday items (which make the perfect NON-tacky NYC souvenirs–really the ONLY NON-tacky NYC souvenirs!) 

After Bendel’s, we headed to the Juicy Couture Flagship Store.  Even though the gals have Juicy Couture in California, the daughter is such a huge fan that I recommended we visit this shop at least for a few minutes. 

From here we hopped back in the towncar and headed to East 12th Street in Greenwich Village.  We made a quick stop at Make-up Forever and since all the make-up artists were occupied, I did a quick demonstration of their products on the daughter.  A 12-year-old doesn’t really need much make-up, of course, but just  a little shimmer eye-shadow on her lids with a pale pink “pop of color” (nothing too drastic) followed by some clear, glittery gloss was the perfect palette. 

Our next planned stop was Owl’s Lab, but to my dismay they have closed their store!!! 🙁  They are exclusive to the online world right now and have a messenger service that can deliver ordered fashion right to your door.

Next up was Pia, although it was a stop geared more toward the mother.  It was a little too sophisticated for a pre-teen.  Same with Ibiza–a little too sophisticated, but nonetheless, still a very unique stop.

Since Owl’s Lab was eliminated, I added two other last-minute stops to the tour that I thought the gals would enjoy.  We hopped back into the towncar and it was off to LaGuardia Place to Helianthus and Purdy Girl.  They absolutely LOVED these boutiques and it didn’t hurt that both shops had HUGE sales going on!  They made a few fun and funky jewelry purchases at Helianthus where they had everything from miniature pig charm necklaces to elegant floral charm bracelets.  At Purdy Girl, they bought an adorable plaid peacoat for the tween and a chic cashmere sweater and scarf for the mother.  Afterall, everything in the store was 50% OFF!

At this point we were running out of time so we headed to the must-see TopShop.  This was a hit for both the mother and the daughter (although it was a little more funky than their preferred style.)  Nonetheless, they took a liking to some of their basic tees and their funky accessories. 

Before we parted ways, I gave them some suggestions for dinner in the area, which included a Little Italy favorite of mine–Umberto’s Clam House!  I also made a map of some other boutiques in the area that they might be interested in, including Jump and Keito (since the mother wanted to find shoes) and Olive & Bette’s (which I knew the teen would love.)

Saturday’s customized shopping tour (although planned for a Sweet 16 Birthday Party) also had some special requests.  It was a mother, daughter and her teenaged friend in a limo and they were looking for some unique, funky, vintage/vintage-inspired and consignment boutiques.  It was a very exciting itinerary to plan!

The tour began at City Bakery (where I recommended the gals have brunch since it was away from the bustle of their hotel in Times Square.)  (Sometimes the disadvantage to a luxury transportation tour can be sitting in traffic for half the tour–especially during this busy holiday season.  To avoid holiday traffic, I suggested we make the tour a downtown-only tour.) 

First stop after City Bakery was Irregular Choice.  The only store in the US is located in the heart of Soho/Nolita and it’s like a shoe carnival.  You will never find more unique shoes in your life!  They had a blast exploring the British-designed shoes, sneakers, boots and handbags.  They even had some unique clothing including t-shirts and raincoats. 

Next stop was the Young Designers Market in Nolita which is a unique shopper’s treasure trove!  You can find anything from jewelry made of geodes to never-before-seen slogan tees.  What’s great about YOUNG designers??  They’re trying to build their business so their prices are EXTREMELY reasonable!  The daughter purchased a beautiful purple dress with crocheted detail for just $40. 

Following the market (where they spent a good 40 minutes–you almost have to with over 50 vendors), we headed to one of the more contemporary stops on the tour–Necessary Clothing.  I knew they would love the prices and since they’re from New Jersey and they have a Joyce Leslie, this would make for a nice alternative.  The daughter ended up buying a couple cute holiday dresses while her friend purchased a cute pair of $7 earmuffs. 

The last stops on the tour were Eye Candy and Zachary’s Smile (both on Lafayette Street.)  They loved browsing Eye Candy for their unique, vintage accessories and they had even more fun in the “Bargain Basement” at Zachary’s Smile where the daughter found a cute holiday blouse for $5! 

Since the time with the limo was up, I walked them over to their final destination–Urban Outfitters–the perfect ending for a day of shopping for teens with vintage style.

If you’d like to take a Customized Shopping Tour in New York City, contact us at www.shop-nyctours.com!

Teen Shopping Tours for the Birthday Girls!

Last weekend’s Teen Shopping Tours, despite the weather, were fun, fun, fun! On Friday, the tour was for a 13-year-old birthday girl, her mom and her grandmother. I picked them up in a limo at 10am and we headed to our usual first stop on the Upper East Side. What made this tour extra special was that we had a stylist meet us at the first stop (the Abercrombie & Fitch Flagship). Kelly Mealia of Kreative Kouture and Ollie & Boo Jewelry had several outfits whipped out in no time and after a whirlwind in the dressing room, we were on our way to Henri Bendel while the mom purchased their favorites.

At Bendel’s, we focused mostly on accessories since most of their women’s clothing would be too large for the tiny teen. Kelly hand picked several headband options and again, it was a quick show for mom and grandma (who even bought some things for themselves–how could they not at the “Girl’s Playground”???). 

After the Bendel mini-spree, it was back in the limo and down Fifth Avenue to the Juicy Couture Flagship store where once again, Kelly put several cute pieces together to form some fabulous outfits. And the grandma picked out one of their signature terry-cloth track suits for HER daughter 🙂

On the way to Noho/Soho, Kelly rode along with us and showed her beautiful jewelry collection, Ollie & Boo, which had just been seen on The Today Show the previous morning. The teen picked out her favorite earrings and Kelly left us at this point of the tour. 

We continued on to Soho, where we stopped for a quick lunch break. While mom and grandma finished up eating, me and the teen headed over to the much-anticipated TopShop! This store was awesome because all 3 of the lovely ladies found clothing that worked for them here. The teen ended up getting an adorable jumper and a sweet bohemian top while the mom bought a stunning black cocktail dress and the grandma a beautiful floral blouse. 

We were running out of time at this point so we had to head uptown to the MAC store where it was time for a teen makeover in preparation for her photo shoot. While the make-up artist applied some colorful and fresh eyeshadow and lip gloss, the grandma got a “smokey-eye” lesson. 

At this point of the tour, it was time for me to leave them as they continued on to the photo shoot on location in the Meatpacking District with Caitlin Greer Photography. 

These gals were super sweet and had a wonderful time, as did I! It made me want to take a shopping trip with my mom and grandma….so fun!

On Saturday, the tour was for a Sweet 16 Birthday and the group came into the city for the day from New Jersey. I met them at Penn Station where the limo picked them up. From here we headed uptown to Henri Bendel, where I assured them they would enjoy browsing the “Girl’s Playground.” 

Since they wanted to focus more on unique, NYC shopping, we skipped Abercrombie & Fitch and Juicy Couture and headed downtown to Noho to Joyce Leslie and Necessary Clothing. On the way, they enjoyed their “teeny” cosmos. Since they’re from New Jersey they were actually familiar with Joyce Leslie but they definitely loved shopping at Necessary Clothing. They found some amazing clothes, shoes and accessories at this stop but I assured them that they needed to save up some energy for TopShop–and they did!

TopShop was a super-successful stop as the sales going on were absolutely AMAZING! There was something for everyone and they made a lot of their purchases there. 

After this stop, we headed to the West Village and they enjoyed their cupcakes along the way. There was a line at the Marc Jacobs Special Items store (as there often is) so I waited in line for them while they browsed Olive & Bettes and Juicy Couture Bleecker Street. 

We were running out of time and I had mini-makeovers planned for the teens after the tour at Makeup Forever so we quickly finished up in the West Village. (Their mom told me these teens loved, loved, loved makeup so I knew this would be a nice addition to the tour for them!) 

The limo dropped us off at Makeup Forever and while they waited for each teen to get their makeover, I mapped out a quick itinerary for them to eat dinner after, continue discount shopping and end up back at Penn Station. All in all, it was a fun birthday!

For more information about ShopNYC Tours OR to book a tour for YOUR teen’s birthday, visit www.shop-nyctours.com!

ShopNYC Tours Attends Viscera New York’s Fashion Show!

The small boutique space on 39th Street was filled with models, photographers and socialites as Viscera New York held their Fall Fashion Show featuring their Spring 2010 Collection. The collection, known as the Mechelle Collection (Mechelle in hebrew translates “to embody God”), projected just that—god-like, ethereal materials with the drape-like goddess shape to match. The color scheme alone had a certain regal appeal and could make anyone feel sophisticated and chic. (Rumor has it that Bergdorf Goodman may be interested in the line!)

ShopNYC Tours Attends Aubrey O’Day’s Clothing Line Launch Party at Owl’s Lab!

Aubrey O’Day of Danity Kane and Making the Band 3 has officially launched, Dare to Love, which is the newest line from Heart on My Sleeve.  The launch party was held last night at Owl’s Lab, which is featured on ShopNYC Tours’ Chic Boutique Tour!  Among Aubrey, some other celebs that joined the party were models Jaslene Gonzalez and Jessica Gomes, Russell Simmons, and actress Samantha Swetra.  Here are few of my pics:

Teen Fashion and Fun Tours Galore!

This past weekend was filled with Teen Fashion and Fun!  It started on Friday with 6 women (2 teens and 4 adults) from Michigan.  They were ready to shop, shop, shop.  They had booked the photo shoot for after the tour and due to time constraints we only had 3 hours to find the teens their outfits.  So we were definitely on a mission.

We began the tour at Makeup Forever in Greenwich Village, where Floriane (one of the amazing Makeup Forever sales reps) gave them mini-makeovers and they bought some really cool, brightly colored eye pencils.  They didn’t want to spend too much time there though.  (We already had appointments for them at Mac scheduled for post-tour/pre-photo shoot).  So we headed down the street to the first clothing and accessories boutique, Owl’s Lab.  The teens loved it, not only for the incredible fashion, but because of the fact that many of the pieces worn on Gossip Girl come from this fabulous boutique.  They bought some awesome clothes and accessories that were (OMG) very Serena and Jenny.  

Next stop was Rugby, which was actually requested by one of the teens.  Rugby was her absolute favorite and she bought a few darling-with-an-edge outfits that were very UES prep.  The other teen said she was more of a girly-girl so I walked her down the street to Ibiza where I knew she would find some sweet, feminine and bohemian dresses, skirts and blouses.

Following Greenwich Village, we headed to Soho.  By this time I had a great feel for each of the teens’ personal styles so I knew that we had to hit up TopShop.  This was a gold mine for both of them!  They found a great mix of edgy, funky fashion along with lacey, frilly and chic pieces.  While one of the teens found shoes galore, the other found her perfect outfits for the photo shoot.  

After TopShop, it was back in the limo and up to the Mac store on 22nd and Fifth Avenue for their makeovers.  While they were getting made-up by the Mac professionals, I headed to Magnolia Bakery (usually a stop on the tour but we ran out of time) and grabbed their cupcakes.  Once I got back to the Mac store and handed them their sweets they were ready to hop in a cab and head to the photo shoot on location in Chelsea with professional photographer, Caitlin Greer.

In addition to the above Teen Fashion and Fun experience, I also gave a tour on Saturday for a 16-year-old girl and her father.  They opted for the Subway/Walking Tour instead of the Limo Tour.  We began the tour on Upper Fifth Avenue, where we visited the usual including the Abercrombie & Fitch Flagship, Henri Bendel and Juicy Couture.  Then it was into the subway and we headed downtown to Soho, where the teen wanted to find some back-to-school shoes and dresses.  She found a cute pair of much-wanted gladiator sandals at David Z and as far as clothing, Joyce Leslie was definitely her favorite.  She found several outfits that she really liked and she was pleased (along with her father) to see the amazingly reasonable prices too.

After the tour, her father sent me an e-mail with this message:

“Thank you very much for the help with shopping with my daughter yesterday!  She was thrilled with the whole trip to NYC and the shopping was the highlight for her. We also did well back home – my wife was surprisingly impressed with my daughter’s purchases…”

If you’d like to book a Teen Fashion and Fun Tour or Teen Fashion and Fun Tour with a Fashion Photo Shoot, please visit www.shop-nyctours.com/tours for more information.  I look forward to shopping with you!