Style: Japanese Gap
Known For: Solid essentials for unbeatable prices.
Uniqlo made its exodus to New York in the Fall of ’06 and it has been a smashing success. The Japanese clothing retailer has accrued a loyal following since their opening and it looks as if this will just be the beginning. Some call it the Japanese Gap, others think of it as a blend between H&M and American Apparel, but everyone agrees that Uniqlo is straight awesome. The 36,000 square foot store is a force in affordable clothing that balances aesthetics and price in just the way we like.
This year Uniqlo has collaborated with Opening Ceremony, Steven Alan, and Gilded Age, with a Jil Sander collection dropping in the Fall. With designers like this there’s no wonder why Uniqlo is leading the affordable fashion charge. And don’t worry, all of these aforementioned pieces are available at their Broadway location. But don’t just be drawn to the big name stuff; all of their goods are worth taking a look at. As soon as you walk in the store you’re surrounded by t-shirts and sweaters in every color imaginable piled up 30 feet high. This is where you’ll find highly wearable t-shirts for as little as $12 and their famous cashmere sweaters for under $100. They also have tons of button-downs that are handsome and only $30-$40.
You’ll have to travel all the way to the back of the store to escape their shirts and sweaters. Walk up the Pac Man themed staircase and you’ll find yourself in the Menswear Department. This is where you can find their outerwear, jeans, and underwear. To the left there will be simple v-necks and underwear that will stack up with the best of them for a fraction of the cost. This is a great place to stock up on essentials like white v-necks, but just make sure to get the slim-fit.
Next to this will be the jeans and outerwear. You’ll find selvage denim here for $80 and standard jeans for about $40. Also check out their washed chino shorts, which go for $30, as they are a perfect summer option that come in every color you could want. Next to the bottoms, you can find their jackets and outerwear. These are the steals for us. This is where their $120 Whipcord Suit was housed, and where you’ll find equally affordable suits and blazers. Soon they’ll have that awesome $100 Tweed Blazer we’ve been raving about. If you come to Uniqlo, you’d be foolish not to check out this area.
The service is simple, as to be expected. It’s such a big store that they can’t cover everyone, which we actually enjoy because it gives us freedom to roam around without sales people peering over your shoulder all the time. The bad thing about Uniqlo is that you shouldn’t expect the highest quality gear when you’re buying there. This is a great place to get simple and fun stuff that you won’t be wearing every day. Don’t come here for a suit you expect to wear the rest of your life. Even if you’re in the market for expensive high quality stuff, it’s worth coming down and checking out because they’ll have something you like. Also check out their awesome Fall/Winter ’09 collection here.
Stores Like It: H&M, Topman, Muji
What to Get Here: Everything! Especially Affordable Cashmere, Cheap T-Shirts, and Cheap Blazers
What Not to Get Here: Long Lasting Quality
Price Range: T-Shirts $10-$30, Shirts $20-$40, Sweaters $40-$100, Pants and Jeans $30-$80, Jackets and Outerwear $40-$80, Suits $100-$160