As part of my mission to reduce my carbon footprint, I vowed to stop buying so much “fast fashion” (trust me, I could go crazy in H&M, this was a BIG leap for me!) and instead, take better care of the quality items I already had in my wardrobe, and thus wear them more. In order to do this, I turned to my great city for assistance…NYC is the fashion capital of the world, after all, and thus is filled with pros who keep New Yorkers’ threads and accessories in the best shape. Here’s 5 or the go-to places/tips I’ve utilized along the way.
For Hard To Handle Pieces, Invest In Luxury Dry Cleaning
“Luxury dry cleaning…is that even a thing?”, you may be asking. But then again, this is NYC, OF COURSE you know it’s a thing!;-) But let me explain why luxury dry cleaning versus regular dry cleaning.
If you have a really special piece you love wearing, but is a bit harder on the upkeep, you may be disappointed to find that regular dry cleaners in the city just don’t do the trick. Take my favorite white silk dress, for instance. My husband bought this dress for me several years ago and I LOVE it–it’s long sleeved, hits right above the knee, has a delicate floral pattern in rose and sky blue and mint, and with the right accessories can transition easily through the seasons. However, I got a tough food stain RIGHT DOWN THE FRONT, and despite shelling out cash to several dry cleaners around my neighborhood, I was always filled with disappointment when it would return back, stain still visible, making the dress unwearable. In fact, I was THIS CLOSE to putting the dress into my donate pile, but decided to give it one last shot, since I loved it so much. I contacted Jeeves on the Upper East Side, who are well known for cleaning couture and getting the HARDEST to get stains out of just about anything, and they worked MAGIC. Now, obviously you won’t want to spend $75+ to dry clean a dress from H&M (where you could probably go pick up a new one for half that price), but if you have a really special piece you love, I would totally suggest taking it here. My silk dress came back to me via delivery looking BETTER than it did the day my husband bought it.
For Shoe Repairs, Go To A Cobbler
Us New Yorkers get a lot of wear and tear out of our shoes. I used to be of the mindset that I would just get a new pair of boots every winter since the heels on last year’s boots would be so worn or the zippers broken, but then I realized that I can just go to a really amazing cobbler, who can resole my boots and fix my zippers. Invest in a shoe shine kit, and your kicks will be looking as good as new!
For Jewelry Polishes, Go To A Jeweler
Before I had my engagement ring, I don’t think it ever occurred to me to go to a jeweler to get my jewelry shined. But guess what? It makes SUCH a difference, especially for pieces you wear constantly. In fact, my jeweler suggested getting delicate pieces professionally polished every two months to keep them in tip-top shape. Typically wherever the piece was purchased, you can go to for free jewelry shines as often as you want. Or you can get a jewelry cleaning kit to do it yourself at home.
For Your Leather Bags, Go To A Leather Spa
Like shoes, our handbags take a HARSH beating. (Gross but appropriate story: this past fall when I had a horrible stomach flu, I was in a cab and had no where else to throw up but where? You guessed it: my bag. Not my best moment.) Needless to say, for basically ALL other situations except that one, you can go to a Leather Spa and have your bags cleaned and conditioned (if they’re looking scuffed), have water and stain marks removed (oh hello, NYC rain and snow!), or have zippers repaired. Heck, you can even make your bag a bit more personalized and have your monograms added!
For A Fit That’s Not Quite Right, Go To A Tailor
If you’re like me and LOVE thrift shops, a good tailor can easily be your best friend. Often times, the fit of your new piece may not be quite right–maybe a little long, maybe a little large, maybe needs to be let out just a little. Your tailor can make these changes (often very inexpensively) and you’ll go from looking a little frumpy to a million bucks.
And there you have it! My 5 tips for making sure your entire wardrobe is in tip-top shape! Any tips of your own? Share below!
p.s. have you guys read this book, The Curated Closet yet? I just finished it and really loved it! Will share more on how it encourages you to figure out your NYC “uniform” soon!;-)