THE 10 BEST INDEPENDENT SHOPS

A beautiful black pot filled with flowering red branches at Roman and Williams Guild-- One of our favorite beautiful design shops in New York.

They say the best and brightest go to New York… And that’s no exception with the design community. In the age of mass production, there is something exceptional about handcrafted pieces that are made with luxurious materials and deliberate skill. Here we focus on the most Beautiful Design Shops in New York and list the 10 best independent shops for design/decor fans.

BEAUTIFUL DESIGN SHOPS IN NEW YORK

ROMAN AND WILLIAMS GUILD

This beautiful shop features the work of artisans from all over the world, plus designs by the store’s owners. They are principal designers of an award-winning design firm and it shows. The shop is artfully merchandised with handcrafted, high-quality, and timeless pieces. I want just about everything.

*Have a French lunch or dinner at La Mercerie, which is part of Roman and Williams Guild. A small corner in the front of the restaurant is devoted to unique flower arrangements by Emily Thompson.

COLONY CO-OP

This Artisan cooperative isn’t the easiest place to find. It’s on the second floor of a frenetic Canal Street building. You have to know about it to find it, but once inside, you realize it’s a gem. It has unique, handcrafted furniture, lighting, textiles and objects from American (and a few international) artisans. Craftsmanship, innovation and quality are the keywords here.

*The showroom changes rather frequently. Subscribe to their newsletter for the latest collections.

OCHRE

This internationally acclaimed showroom has been turning out innovative designs since 1996. Many of their designs have been copied, like the Arctic Pear chandelier shown above (top left), but the quality of the copies isn’t the same. If you ask me, handmade pieces have character and charm that can’t be replicated by machines. Ochre’s design ethos: place equal importance on harmonious proportions, luxurious materials and matchless craftsmanship.

*One showroom is in New York and another is in London.

Beautiful ceramics at ABC Carpet & Home in New York.  One of the most beautiful design shops in New York.  Ciel & Lune.

ABC CARPET & HOME

Long before sustainability became a buzzword, the owners of ABC Carpet & Home were pushing for a change in the marketplace– focusing on sustainability, fair labor practices and craftsmanship. Each item in this six-floor store is chosen with those factors in mind. Everything is beautiful, well-designed and good for the environment and/or the artisans that created the work. I love the handmade ceramics, clean skincare lines (Tata Harper is my favorite), textiles and jewelry.

*The store has three restaurants by famed French chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten: ABC Kitchen (white, light décor with fresh farm-to-table fare), ABC Cocina (dark and moody interior with small plates) and ABC V (bright and airy design with a light vegetarian menu to match). All three are delicious and the service is excellent.

Handwoven baskets, rustic looking pottery and unusual vases filled with flowering branches at Oroboro- a beautiful design shop in New York.

OROBORO

This small shop in NYC’s Nolita neighborhood is a clothing and home accessories store featuring the work of emerging artists. The pieces are unique, like the baskets above that are woven into intricate shapes (some of them quite whimsical) by an artisan in Oakland, California. Each piece is handcrafted and definitely won’t be found everywhere.

*Oroboro also has a selection of clean beauty and fragrance brands by more obscure, but cool, small companies.

BDDW

Stunning, timeless pieces designed by the gallery’s owner and made by hand in Philadelphia. This large gallery/showroom is heaven for those who want completely unique, high-quality pieces. The lighting is exceptional. I love everything here. Every. Single. Thing.

*BDDW Gallery & Annex is across the street and has a nice selection of wall art.

DIENST & DOTTER

Dienst & Dotter is a treasure trove of fine antique Scandinavian furniture and art. Most of the collection is from the 17th century through the mid-20th century. The owner spent her early years working at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and a number of esteemed design firms (including Jacques Grange) before opening her shop in 2005. This is a beautifully refined collection of statement pieces.

*Each piece is one-of-a-kind and is artfully displayed in this large showroom.

STILL HOUSE

This East Village shop may be small, but it definitely has a point of view. Black, white, and cream neutrals in a minimalist setting. The focus here is on mindful designers who create impactful, but restrained designs. Home décor, gifts and handcrafted jewelry. I love this shop.

*The designer/owner sells her own line of jewelry, SH Wedding. These are simple, but carefully crafted gold and diamond wedding and engagement rings that are not horribly expensive.

ROLL & HILL

Contemporary lighting by independent designers is the specialty at Roll & Hill. Their 3-story showroom in Soho is minimally decorated and gives each piece the necessary space to be appreciated as the shining works of art that they are.

*Roll & Hill also has an online store, with a much more extensive collection than is displayed in the showroom.

CLIC GALLERY & APIECE APART

Technically, these are two shops, but they are next door to each other and you can get from one to the other from inside. Clic Gallery has a large assortment of coffee table books– fashion, travel, art & design-related. It also has furniture from around the world (Moroccan benches, Belgian linens, French home fragrance, pillows from India, as well as contemporary photography from local artists). Apiece Apart is a collection of elevated basics: wide-legged pants, shirts, and dresses. I’ve included it in this Beautiful Design Shops In New York post because their flowers and ceramics are stunning.

FINAL THOUGHTS

If you have other great design stores in New York, I would love to know. Please comment below. For more information on a trip to New York, check out our Shopping & Art Day in New York article.

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