The American musician Scott Miller once wrote, “I’m not above cliches tonight.” So, dear readers, forgive this small incursion into the realm of the hackneyed and shopworn.
Sifting through the wares in New York’s Fine and Dandy Shop, I was like a kid in a candy store.
There is not a single thing for sale in the Fine and Dandy Shop that would not appeal to the well-dressed man. The shop has a commitment to the kind of old fashioned, independent haberdashery you see all too infrequently in these times of rampant, multinational consolidation.
Fine and Dandy traces its origins back to 2008, when it emerged as an online vendor; as it grew, it organized popups around the New York area. By 2013, the enterprise had taken brick-and-mortar roots.
I had the opportunity, during my visit to New York last November, to visit the Fine and Dandy Shop.
First, a small word of warning. The shop is not particularly easy to get to. It’s located on West 49th Street, in Hell’s Kitchen, one of the few areas in Manhattan underserved by the otherwise excellent subway system. I came up from Chelsea (after a visit to the Dia Foundation), intending to take the M11 bus up 10th Avenue. But the traffic was so thick that I got off the bus and hoofed it to the shop on foot. I beat the bus.
It’s worth the effort.
A paean to dandyism as high art, the Fine and Dandy Shop is, despite its modest dimensions, densely stocked with men’s furnishings of just about every stripe: suspenders, ties, socks, pocket squares, sock garters, cuff links, scarves and spats. Just about everything in the shop is American made, and most of that in New York City.
I purchased an ascot, a pair of suspenders, a pocket square and, rectifying a (literary omission), a copy Take Ivy. The ascot, pocket square and suspenders are all made in New York.
The ascot is fairly light, making it ideal for spring and summer wear, although I’ve already employed it in the unseasonably warm Southeast Texas winter.
The pocket square is a beautiful, muted plaid wool challis with blue edging.
A pink and cream cotton, the suspenders are will have to wait until spring and lighter colored suiting.