Everyone knows New York City’s world famous Central Park. A green oasis in the middle of Manhattan, a perfect place to leave the city’s hectic life for a moment. But there are more beautiful green spots, like Battery Park in the south, Prospect Park in Brooklyn, the green zones along the Hudson River and my personal favorite; High Line Park. Both the tourists as the New Yorkers love these places. And even when you don’t have time to relax in one of those parks, you can have lunch being surrounded by green leaves and cute pink flowers; on several places in the city green pedestrian plazas popped up. Take a seat between the planters on Broadway, for example.
This weekend I was surprised by the green in another way. When I entered International Playground, a design concept store in the Lower East Side, I felt like entering a tropical rainforest. It was the smell of a terrarium (in a good way) that came to me. I immediately recognized the green wall which divides the store in two parts. The idea behind this concept was to create a space where people could lose themselves, a playground, but for adults. The green wall and plants in the store and window did remind me about a sunny day in the park. And whether having a picnic with friends or playing hide and seek as a little child, the park is a perfect place to loose yourself.
Just a few more streets to the east of Manhattan I stumbled upon another store where fashion and flowers come together, this time both literally and figuratively. At the corner of Orchard and Broome Street you will find Earnest Sewn, a Japanese Wabi-Sabi inspired American denim brand with in the back a small flower shop called Flower Girl NYC. These two shops fit perfectly together because of the interior design of Earnest Sewn: moss, leaves and other naturally green products in combination with wood and raw materials create a surprising decor to sell a denim collection. This decoration makes it look like the flower shop is part of the denim brand itself. Unfortunately I wasn’t allowed to make pictures inside the store, so take a look at the website of this dark denim brand to find out more about their interior.
On the other side of the East River, at Williamsburg’s Artists & Fleas market I found more moss, dried leaves, twigs and green pebbles. This time in small glass bottles, as your own little terrarium on a gold vintage chain. Tamar Builder, the Brooklyn based designer of Little World Designs, wants to bring more earth into our urban lives. “I have paired my horticultural expertise with my love for vintage charms and treasures, to create this original gift.” Says her Etsy web shop. Those unique jewels looked so quirky and cute at the same time that from all the beautiful things found at this small indoor market I remember those most.
So fashion and nature together brings more than handmade produced goods and organic fabrics. Nature and especially everything green seems to be an inspiration for store design and the decoration of the human body. Living in New York for three weeks now, there have been days with perfect shopping weather to find out about these stores, but also a lot of days with sun and a blue sky to enjoy one of New York’s beautiful green spots.
Hopefully we can enjoy this summer for a few more weeks, but when it gets too cold there is always restaurant The Park in Chelsea where you can enjoy your indoor dinner feeling like relaxing during an Indian summer night in the park.
All images by Lisanne, except Little World Designs’ necklace