Another Step for French Fashion in America: Isabel Marant’s New SoHo Boutique

Spring-Summer 2010

As an admirer of French fashion (subtle ladywear + fit + quality), I was excited to visit Isabel Marant’s first Stateside store in SoHo (469 Broome Street at Greene Street).

Observations:

  • Silk and linen distressed clothes
  • “Pastel Pirate “- grey/beige skinny striped shorts and pants paired with light pink tops
  • Garish, embellished things – American-exclusive?
  • ‘Lower’-priced Etoile line – grungy madras + army fatigue pants = wrinkled leftovers

Are all of the charming French chic items sold out? Like NYTimes Critical Shopper Cintra Wilson, I was underwhelmed and agree that many of the fashionista staple items can can be found at affordable prices elsewhere.

French Fashion Boutiques: Where to Buy in New York City

French Style Icon Charlotte Gainsbourg

French style icon Charlotte Gainsbourg

Ignore the TopShop hype and get down with some quality French duds that will give you enduring style. New Yorkers are spoiled by having so many French clothing stores on our little island. Here is a taste:

Thanks to Gwyneth’s GOOP newsletter, French clothing company Saint James got a shout-out for its classic nautical shirts and promptly sold out.

Comptoir des Cotonniers offers refined cotton and linen dresses and separates for women and little girls. The SoHo store opened last year and is the first US branch.

A.P.C. has both men’s and women’s clothing with a decidedly understated, French/Japanese hipster vibe. There is a modest outlet store, A.P.C. Surplus,  conveniently located in Williamsburg.

Located on a bustling street in the West Village, you’ll need to be buzzed in at ludivine. A charming boutique, the offerings are sweetly chic and chock-full of Parisian brands like Vanessa Bruno. Mentioned in a recent Vogue cover article, this is a favorite shop of Gisele Bundchen. While you’re in the neighborhood, stop by for a delicious croissant at Patisserie Claude a few doors down to top off the Francophile experience.

Where’s It’s At

Saint James, 1045 Madison Ave., nr. 80th St.

Comptoir des Cotonniers 155 Spring St., nr. W. Broadway

A.P.C. 131 Mercer St., nr. Prince St.

A.P.C. Surplus 33 Grand St., nr. Kent Ave., Brooklyn

ludivine 172 W. 4th St., nr. Jones St.