Hello My Vintage Loves! If you follow me on Facebook and/or Instagram (and if you don’t you should- links are at the bottom of the page so come on over!) you’ve already seen pictures from our lovely outing on the Upper East Side of Manhattan this past Sunday. If you haven’t already seen the pictures you’re in for a treat and a little more in depth explanation of what we did that day.
A group of about 20 vintage-enthusiast friends gathered at 11am at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, all vintage attired, which met with a mix of enjoyment, confusion and consternation from the other museum-goers (i.e., the usual reaction to a group of vintage-dressed folks). I chose a late 30s dress with peplum and bow detail that was a bit of a wounded bird when I bought it but fixed up beautifully, and a stunning 40’s tilt hat that I bought at the last Reading Air Show. We’ve learned that wearing a hat really makes any vintage outfit pop! We were at the Met to see the Death Becomes Her exhibit which covered mourning attire from the 1860’s to the 1920’s. It’s a small but well curated exhibition and definitely worth seeing if you have the chance. Matthew and I didn’t stay too long as we had already seen the exhibit about a month before, so after a quick visit we headed over to the Ralph Lauren Mansion Flagship store on 72nd Street and Lexington. It’s one of Matthew’s favorite places, and what better place to go for a visit when you’re so well dressed and love to look at fashion? We had a great time chatting with the salespeople who were interested in what we were wearing and what we were up to that day.
Then we headed over to the NY Society Library for a private tour. The NY Society Library is the oldest library in the the city, founded in 1754 (legend has it that George Washington borrowed books from the library and never returned two of them!), and is currently housed in a mansion that was built in 1917. Sadly, the building hasn’t retained very much of its 1917 charm; with the exception of a few reading rooms and a stairway with a skylight, which were lovely, most of the building has been white-washed modernized, but it was still very fun to go behind the scenes and see the stacks and the book repair/binding room. It is worth going to; if I lived on the Upper East Side myself I would join just to have somewhere to go that is lovely and quiet to read and write.
Next we were off to the Lexington Candy Shoppe, a luncheonette that has been in business since 1925 and has hardly changed the interior in all that time! Directly across the street we looked sadly at the former Lascoff Drugs which was a beautiful pharmacy that only closed in 2012 after being in business for 113 years, and now houses a Warby Parker. For vintage lovers like us, these kind of closures always make us sad because they are bits of history that can never be replaced. Sadly, its happening all over NYC at an alarming rate, but that’s something for another post, so I digress… Happily, the Lexington Candy Shoppe is still open (and we hope they will remain open!) so we went in for a late lunch and were served by enthusiastic waitresses who, after our meal, asked us hop up on the counter and pose for some pictures. They seemed to be very happy to have us there!
Some of our group took off, and the rest of us headed to our last stop of the day- Bemelmans Bar at the Carlyle Hotel. This was my first time there and I immediately loved its dim, dark leather homey-ness with walls that are covered in paintings from the artist who created the Madeline books, Ludwig Bemelmans. Our group squeezed in to a corner and ordered our drinks, which were absolutely superb, but at $25 and up they kind of had to be. If I ever become rich I will come here often, but until then I’ll save it for special occasions when I want to mingle with the rich and fabulous. After we finished our drinks it was time to go home, so we said our goodbyes and went our separate ways, already looking forward to the next time we could meet up and explore another part of the city!