By Jamey Powell
Midtown gets all the love during the holidays. The Rockefeller tree, the Saks light show, the Bryant Park ice rink…and we haven’t even gotten to Herald Square yet. While the miracle on 34th Street is very real and full of holiday magic, this time of year is when I want to escape the midtown madness and sneak down to SoHo. A few weekends ago, I had a day of holiday shopping that epitomized why I love it so much. Here’s how it went:
After a Saturday morning SWERVE, I grabbed my bestie and jumped on the NR to Prince street. At this hour, “but first, coffee” had turned into a post-workout “we’re about to be real hangry” feeling, so our first stop was The Butcher’s Daughter. It’s one of the most awesome brunch spots if you’re not trying to compromise your productivity with bottomless mimosas (there’s a time and place for everything, my friends). With a menu full of juices and delicious fresh produce (the avocado toast though!), The Butcher’s Daughter isn’t short on healthy options and charm. What it is short on is meat–as the place is completely vegetarian–so don’t let the name deceive you.
Once we had scarfed–I mean, had politely eaten–our brunch, we headed for the MoMA Design Store. I was on the hunt for a unique, NYC-related gift for a relative, and the MoMA Design Store has so much modern-design houseware items and art books. The name MoMA itself is such a “cool New York thing,” and the book I wound up buying for her is definitely an upgrade from the classic Statue of Liberty keychain gift.
Next up, we started the tour-de-pop-up as we fondly labeled it. SoHo is the epicenter of the pop-up universe right now, so if you’re looking to get into a store to ooh and ahh over your favorite products you can usually only find online, this is the time. My main priority, though, was getting to Hunter, who opened their beautiful Pop-Up store at 108 Wooster Street in November.
As we’ve all been scratching our heads wondering where the heck winter is and hating this weird, cold rain, I’ve basically been living in my Hunter boots. I've had them for 4 years now and I'm convinced they're invincible. They're super durable and waterproof, and paired with Hunter's fleecy warm boot socks, they'll keep my toes toasty for when winter finally decides to say "Hello...it's me." Oh, I forgot to mention that they're adorable, but they speak for themselves on that. And since I love my oldies-but-goodies so much, I figured I might as well also pick up a pair of the beautiful red Original Tall Gloss boots that you see in my photo. What rainy day isn’t begging for a pop of color?
We finished the day over coffee at Ground Support Cafe, a cozy, rustic coffee shop on West Broadway whose coffee beans are all sourced through direct trade with farmers. With good vibes and a killer matcha latte (also, I’ve heard their chocolate chip cookie is gooey and chocolately and amazing, but how would I know, right?), Ground Support was the perfect place to end our Soho journey.
Now that you’ve heard about my magical day in Soho, I have two parting thoughts for you:
1. A lot of people agonize over holiday shopping, but to me, the energy and spirit of the city in December is another reason we brave those subways and crowded streets all year long. Let yourself enjoy the tourists, the lines, and those Salvation Army Bells–you know there’s a charm.
2. If you need some extra motivation to get out there, here’s some good news:
Hunter is hooking SWERVE riders up this month, now through December 31, 2015. The first 50 people that show this blog post in the Hunter Pop-Up Store at 108 Wooster will get a complimentary pair of their amazing Dazzle Boot Socks - whaaat! Great stocking stuffer gift, or since they’re free of charge, you’re totally allowed to keep them for yourself.
So, my friends, stay dry, stay warm, and remember to take in this holiday season. It only comes once a year!