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New York City has more stores than anyone could physically tackle, but somehow we always keep returning to the usual suspects. To break out of the rut, we've asked some local shopping and fashion gurus to provide their hidden retail gems—those unique stores around our fantastic city that we might not all know about. Cue the Beatles: We're about to get a little help from our friends.
Image via Milk and Bread
Sarah Leon edits the style, travel, and home blogs at The Huffington Post, a place she's worked for the past year and a half. Before that, she was a freelance writer for publications like The New York Times Style Magazine, Interview, Fashionista, and more. Here, she shows us her favorite spot in Chinatown for handcrafted leather accessories.
Walking around my neighborhood a few years ago, I stumbled on a.b.k Custom Leather Craft, which has to be one of the coolest stores around. Now, visiting the plant-filled Henry Street store-cum-workshop is a monthly routine. Alya and Katya, who are from Belarus, make all the leather shoes, bags, wallets and belts from scratch out of the most wonderfully-colored leather.
On my first visit to the store, I found the most amazing watch, and they told me a really romantic story about how they had found the watch face in a factory that burned down in Eastern Europe, and then they custom-made the double-wrapped leather strap to fit my wrist. I was afraid to ask the price, but when I finally gained the courage I found it was surprisingly in my budget. An added bonus of checking out a.b.k: Alya and Katya are tall, gorgeous, and have the most amazing effortless-chic style.
· a.b.k Custom Leather Craft [Official Site]
· Sarah Leon [Huffington Post]
· All Shopping Confidential Posts [Racked NY]