2009 October 29
Philip Takes the Meatpacking District
(NEW YORK) In an era of downsizing and store closings, Philip Crangi's story is full of hope. The designer of Philip Crangi fine tewelry and the Giles & Brother costume line has just opened his first freestanding store directly next to Pastis at 9 Ninth Avenue after 8 years in business. Working closely with his sister and business partner Courtney Crangi, the 2007 CFDA/ Vogue Fashion Fund winner revamped the 200 square foot space in a matter of weeks. With pressed tin ceilings and moss-colored walls, the space exudes the sort of crafty hominess that Crangi is known for. He built most of the fixtures himself and the store is managed by his sister-in-law Sheri Zerkle. The Daily caught up with the designer as he greeted customers during the lunchtime rush.
How long has this been in the works?
About 20 years. It's always been my dream to open a store, and the more we're in this business, I really feel that the future is as retailers. With wholesaling partners as well, but with retailing, I like having control over the brand. After years of letting other people cherry-pick the collection and tell our story, I wanted to take the opportunity to tell it ourselves. We got the lease in early August and hustled to get it done. Courtney and I did it all ourselves, basically.
Why did you choose the Meatpacking District?
My first studio in New York was down here in 1993. I had a massive, gorgeous space at 425 West 13th with an old skateboard company and a friend of mine. We had the whole sixth floor. I had that for 4 years, then our rent went up and and we moved out. But it feels great to get back. This spot is perfect--there's so much foot traffic, all the time. A lot of the people in this neighborhood are from out of town, so every time someone buys something and goes home, we're exporting the brand a little bit.
How much merch are you carrying here?
We're doing everything--mens and womens, Giles & Brother, fine jewelry. We're doing so well here already that we're having trouble keeping things in stock! We're working on some custom pieces for the store. And I've always wanted to get back into home, so we're working on some things for the holiday season. We also have some books and objects that inspire us and help tell our story.
What's your Pastis order?
Chicken paillard with a beer, anytime day or night. I'm also really into Bill's, this burger place that just opened across the street.
We missed spotting you in Paris during Fashion Week.
I usually go for sales, but this season, I was busy getting the store ready to open. But I am going to travel for the holidays. I was just talking to my boyfriend about this on the phone! Something in Mexico, Costa Rica? I don't know. I just want to be riding a horse on the beach, but I have a feeling I might be home in Florida with my parents.
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