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Goods for the Study; Photo by <a href="http://drielys.com">Driely S.</a> for Racked
Goods for the Study; Photo by Driely S. for Racked

Back to School for Adults: 14 Life-Organizing NYC Stores

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Goods for the Study; Photo by Driely S. for Racked

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The back-to-school routine of picking up new clothes and new supplies as summer winds down has been drilled into our heads from our early years. And now, whether you're still a student of school or just a student of life, the beginning of September makes you want to settle down and gear up for the rest of the year—and that begins with getting organized.

So we've mapped out fourteen New York City stores that'll help you do just that. Whether it's turning an unused apartment corner into a home office or finally bringing some order into that microscopic kitchen, these shops—ranging from indie to chain and cheap to, well, up there—will whip you and your space into shape after long, lazy summer days.


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1. Lee's Art Shop

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220 W 57th St
New York, NY 10019
(212) 247-0110
Visit Website
Skip the urge to buy pens in every single color at this landmark art supply store and head to the section of the store that includes planners for this year and next, frames for those pictures you printed but have yet to hang, and furniture and lighting for your home office—should you be so blessed to have one. [Photo]

2. Smythson

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4 W 57th St
New York, NY 10022
(212) 265-4573
Visit Website
For the fancy-pants organizer, there's luxe diaries and planners from the upscale leather purveyor. Go beyond with leather boxes for small storage, manly leather portfolios, and (non-leather) plain or personalized stationary. [Photo]

3. The Container Store

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725 Lexington Avenue
New York, NY 10022
(212) 366-4200
Visit Website
First things first—"Contain yourself" is probably one of the best store slogans out there. But seriously, the store is ideal for solving the unique organization problems that New Yorkers most often face, like setting up a makeshift closet in a studio or putting extra shelving in an unnaturally tiny kitchen. [Photo]

4. MUJI Times Square

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620 Eighth Ave
New York, NY 10018
(212) 382-2300
Visit Website
If we were doing these reviews entirely in emojis, Muji would get the praise hands. The Times Square store utterly contrasts its chaotic neighborhood with merchandise that creates order, like storage containers in every single size you could ever need or hooks and cutlerly holders for the kitchen—all available at very fair prices. [Photo]

5. Whisk

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933 Broadway
New York, NY 10010
(212) 477-8680
Visit Website
"Who wants to cook in a messy kitchen?" is the first thing you see on their website. " Clean up, organize, and make something good!" Head to their Broadway shop to take care of those first two items—store things you don't want to see strewn about your countertops, and get yourself some real bakeware so that you stop making brownies out of the same grocery store tin. [Photo by Racked]

6. Paper Presentation

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23 W 18th St
New York, NY 10011
(973) 992-1300
Visit Website
The name says it all—anything that's made with paper can be found here, and it'll look darn good. But they're not just limited to stationary and scrapbooking materials—find chalkboard panels that are a retro upgrade on white boards, or labels of all shapes and sizes to categorize what you've stored. [Photo]

7. John Derian Company Inc.

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6 E 2nd St
New York, NY 10003
(212) 677-3917
Visit Website
Collect and organize your miscellaneous perfume bottles on a vintage Moroccan tray from this East Village shop, whose other goods that fall under the category of organization (and affordability) include coasters, paperweights, vases, and magnets. Other items here, like busts, unique dishware, and rugs, are an added bonus. [Photo]

8. Moleskine

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436 W Broadway
New York, NY 10012
(646) 964-4146
Visit Website
This is the city's newest location for the top-of-the-line brand best known for its notebooks and planners. Perhaps this should be your first stop—write everything down that you need to do to get organized this fall, and then cross each item off your list one by one—you know how satisfying that feels. [Photo courtesy of Moleskine]

9. Goods For The Study

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234 Mulberry St
New York, NY 10012
(212) 219-2789
Visit Website
This McNally Jackson-owned shop has its own entrance just around the corner from the bookstore, and has everything you need to turn your desktop into a veritable battle zone against your workload: calendars, notebooks, old-fashioned tape dispensers, and more. Just be ready to spend if you're looking to buy office furniture. [Photo by Driely S.]

10. Beam

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240 Kent Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11249
(646) 450-1469
Visit Website
"Beam: For the well-designed life." Their tagline alone brings peace to a disorganized homeowner (or renter). Keep going through the store to find items like wire storage baskets, doormats, lighting fixtures, and maybe the coolest thing ever: The Suburbia Wall Organizer. [Photo by Driely S.]

11. Sprout Home

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44 Grand St
Brooklyn, NY 11249
(718) 388-4440
Visit Website
Nothing says that you've got your life together more than the ability to keep a plant alive—or something like that. Owner Tassy de Give and her staff can help you select the best houseplant for your needs, whether you're going for greenery that's a few inches or a few feet tall. [Photo by Driely S.]

12. Court Street Office Supplies

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44 Court St
Brooklyn, NY 11201
(718) 499-3015
Visit Website
This no-nonsense supply shop has been getting locals the office basics they need for more than three decades, with everything from printer cartridges and paper to afterthoughts like cleaning supplies (because a germ-y office is certainly a disorganized one). They also cater to corporate and legal offices, as well as schools.[Photo]

13. Flight 001

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132 Smith Street
Brooklyn, NY 11201
(718) 243-0001
Visit Website
The shop with outposts here in Cobble Hill and in Greenwich is a destination for international jet setters—but packing for a trip is all about organization, no? Stop here to pick up handy items that also translate to the home, like document holders, toiletry bags to categorize your makeup, or a Grid-It case that keeps your electronics and cords in place. [Photo]

14. Papél New York

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225 Court St
Brooklyn, NY 11201
(718) 422-0255
Visit Website
Shopping for holiday gifts? Kind of stressful. Make it easier by planning a step ahead and picking up all your gift wrap, bows, tags,, cards and more all at the same place—and stop being that person who gives a present in the same recycled gift bag. [Photo]

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1. Lee's Art Shop

220 W 57th St, New York, NY 10019
Skip the urge to buy pens in every single color at this landmark art supply store and head to the section of the store that includes planners for this year and next, frames for those pictures you printed but have yet to hang, and furniture and lighting for your home office—should you be so blessed to have one. [Photo]
220 W 57th St
New York, NY 10019

2. Smythson

4 W 57th St, New York, NY 10022
For the fancy-pants organizer, there's luxe diaries and planners from the upscale leather purveyor. Go beyond with leather boxes for small storage, manly leather portfolios, and (non-leather) plain or personalized stationary. [Photo]
4 W 57th St
New York, NY 10022

3. The Container Store

725 Lexington Avenue, New York, NY 10022
First things first—"Contain yourself" is probably one of the best store slogans out there. But seriously, the store is ideal for solving the unique organization problems that New Yorkers most often face, like setting up a makeshift closet in a studio or putting extra shelving in an unnaturally tiny kitchen. [Photo]
725 Lexington Avenue
New York, NY 10022

4. MUJI Times Square

620 Eighth Ave, New York, NY 10018
If we were doing these reviews entirely in emojis, Muji would get the praise hands. The Times Square store utterly contrasts its chaotic neighborhood with merchandise that creates order, like storage containers in every single size you could ever need or hooks and cutlerly holders for the kitchen—all available at very fair prices. [Photo]
620 Eighth Ave
New York, NY 10018

5. Whisk

933 Broadway, New York, NY 10010
"Who wants to cook in a messy kitchen?" is the first thing you see on their website. " Clean up, organize, and make something good!" Head to their Broadway shop to take care of those first two items—store things you don't want to see strewn about your countertops, and get yourself some real bakeware so that you stop making brownies out of the same grocery store tin. [Photo by Racked]
933 Broadway
New York, NY 10010

6. Paper Presentation

23 W 18th St, New York, NY 10011
The name says it all—anything that's made with paper can be found here, and it'll look darn good. But they're not just limited to stationary and scrapbooking materials—find chalkboard panels that are a retro upgrade on white boards, or labels of all shapes and sizes to categorize what you've stored. [Photo]
23 W 18th St
New York, NY 10011

7. John Derian Company Inc.

6 E 2nd St, New York, NY 10003
Collect and organize your miscellaneous perfume bottles on a vintage Moroccan tray from this East Village shop, whose other goods that fall under the category of organization (and affordability) include coasters, paperweights, vases, and magnets. Other items here, like busts, unique dishware, and rugs, are an added bonus. [Photo]
6 E 2nd St
New York, NY 10003

8. Moleskine

436 W Broadway, New York, NY 10012
This is the city's newest location for the top-of-the-line brand best known for its notebooks and planners. Perhaps this should be your first stop—write everything down that you need to do to get organized this fall, and then cross each item off your list one by one—you know how satisfying that feels. [Photo courtesy of Moleskine]
436 W Broadway
New York, NY 10012

9. Goods For The Study

234 Mulberry St, New York, NY 10012
This McNally Jackson-owned shop has its own entrance just around the corner from the bookstore, and has everything you need to turn your desktop into a veritable battle zone against your workload: calendars, notebooks, old-fashioned tape dispensers, and more. Just be ready to spend if you're looking to buy office furniture. [Photo by Driely S.]
234 Mulberry St
New York, NY 10012

10. Beam

240 Kent Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11249
"Beam: For the well-designed life." Their tagline alone brings peace to a disorganized homeowner (or renter). Keep going through the store to find items like wire storage baskets, doormats, lighting fixtures, and maybe the coolest thing ever: The Suburbia Wall Organizer. [Photo by Driely S.]
240 Kent Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11249

11. Sprout Home

44 Grand St, Brooklyn, NY 11249
Nothing says that you've got your life together more than the ability to keep a plant alive—or something like that. Owner Tassy de Give and her staff can help you select the best houseplant for your needs, whether you're going for greenery that's a few inches or a few feet tall. [Photo by Driely S.]
44 Grand St
Brooklyn, NY 11249

12. Court Street Office Supplies

44 Court St, Brooklyn, NY 11201
This no-nonsense supply shop has been getting locals the office basics they need for more than three decades, with everything from printer cartridges and paper to afterthoughts like cleaning supplies (because a germ-y office is certainly a disorganized one). They also cater to corporate and legal offices, as well as schools.[Photo]
44 Court St
Brooklyn, NY 11201

13. Flight 001

132 Smith Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201
The shop with outposts here in Cobble Hill and in Greenwich is a destination for international jet setters—but packing for a trip is all about organization, no? Stop here to pick up handy items that also translate to the home, like document holders, toiletry bags to categorize your makeup, or a Grid-It case that keeps your electronics and cords in place. [Photo]
132 Smith Street
Brooklyn, NY 11201

14. Papél New York

225 Court St, Brooklyn, NY 11201
Shopping for holiday gifts? Kind of stressful. Make it easier by planning a step ahead and picking up all your gift wrap, bows, tags,, cards and more all at the same place—and stop being that person who gives a present in the same recycled gift bag. [Photo]
225 Court St
Brooklyn, NY 11201