Best indie shops: Astoria, Queens



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  • The Blooming Company

  • The Furniture Market

  • The Furniture Market

  • Inside Astoria

  • Loveday 31

  • Rejuvenate Face & Body

  • Rejuvenate Face & Body

  • Seaburn Books

  • Site

  • Site

The Blooming Company

The Blooming Company

Tucked beneath the N/W platform at Ditmars Boulevard, this eclectic shop carries funky clothes, candles, hats, toiletries, handbags and accessories, running the gamut from bohemian sun frocks to belted, Jackie O.--style shifts. TONY deal: Mention TONY for 10 percent off everything in the shop through Wednesday 21. 22-75 31st St between Ditmars Blvd and 23rd Ave (718-726-2161)

The Furniture Market
The 15-year-old Furniture Market is a two-floored wonderland of a shop that comes off as a cross between Citizen Kane's warehouse of treasures and your grandmother's attic. Expect to uncover gilded mirrors, claw-foot tables, cuckoo clocks, eccentric lamps, bohemian objets d'art (like Mickey Mouse phones), and furniture that can be as old as 19th-century Victorian or as new as last year's Ikea. You won't find any Swedish meatballs here, but manager Pedro Gonzalez lives to haggle, so prepare to bargain for what strikes your fancy. 22-08 Astoria Blvd between 21st and 23rd Sts (718-545-3935,

Inside Astoria
Andrew Purdom opened his home-goods shop three and a half years ago, and he's filled its shelves with items that span from reasonably priced glassware by Stlzle (a German crystal company, $10--$12) to $100--$200 pieces of furniture, like shelving units and accent tables. The majority of the stock focuses on gifty goods like handmade jewelry, a wide selection of scented candles, cookbooks (Top Chef: The Quickfire Cookbook) and quirky tomes published by Chronicle, including Citi Field, a pop-up about the Mets' new ballpark. TONY deal: Mention TONY for 10 percent off everything in the shop through Wednesday 21. 37-20 Ditmars Blvd between 37th and 38th Sts (718-956-4000)

This high-end women's shop, opened in 2006 by Kristie Foster, rivals the stylish offerings at any uppity Manhattan boutique. The merch is a curated mix of high-concept pieces by European (Dagmar, Rodebjer) and local designers (Antoinette Bibis, Holy Harlot), some of whom are exclusive to the store. Whereas most indie shops favor strong cuts over luxe fabric, Foster focuses on the reverse, sourcing pieces that have unique washes and blends (lyocell, mercerized cotton) with European heritage. TONY deal: Mention TONY for 10 percent off everything in the shop through Wednesday 21. 24-01 23rd Ave at 24th St (718-204-5031)

The Little Soap Shop
Clean up your act at this 200-square-foot "soaperie," which got its start in owner Vivian Dritsas's kitchen after she took a soap-making class in 2005. Here, vegan, all-natural products abound—including lip balm, organic shower gel, soy candles and, of course, handmade soap— created on the premises with Dead Sea minerals and coconut and olive oils. Dritsas also creates custom orders, which she can ship directly to you, as well as party favors and centerpieces for bridal showers and other events. 22-07 36th St at Ditmars Blvd (718-626-1241,

Loveday 31
This small vintage shop sells everything from badass boots to sparkly sweaters, but owner Ivona Bilicic specializes in preloved dresses. Choose among flirty frocks ranging from the Donna Reed--flowered '50s through the punk-rock-princess '80s, then top off your revamped look with one of Loveday's vintage or new pieces of jewelry, including Gatsby--era headbands by local designers Wink & Flip or Lola and Eye that would make even Blair Waldorf swoon. TONY deal: Mention TONY for 20 percent off everything in the shop through Wednesday 21. 33-06 31st Ave at 33rd St (718-728-4057)

Rejuvenate Face & Body
Evelyn Gatzonis's idea of a prime spa is one that provides all the individualized treatments of a relaxation factory like Bliss at lower prices, without sacrificing service or an organic mission. At Rejuvenate, choose from an ultimate purifying facial, microdermabrasion, a therapeutic massage or other holistic services, and sip herbal tea and snack on complimentary fruit while you wait. The skin-conscious spa also carries an extensive selection of all-natural products, including face and body care by Australian company Triology—this is the only retailer on the East Coast to stock it, so Triology junkies, save yourself the shipping fees. Check out skincare and aromatherapy items by Blissoma, which are 100 percent natural and vegetarian. The savvy staff of aestheticians will help you decide what's best for you. TONY deal: Mention TONY for 20 percent off products through Wednesday 21. 26-17 23rd Ave at 27th St (718-626-4434,

Seaburn Books
Seaburn specializes in Greek titles, ranging from Nicholas Gage's tragic love story Eleni to a number of ancient Greek tales. Prices can hover around $50, since these volumes are imported directly from Greece, but the shop also sells older fiction titles starting at just $2. Even if you don't have the urge to bury your nose in one of the hard- or softcovers about the Hellenic Republic, you can still peruse more than 150,00 titles (including the latest New York Times best-sellers) covering topics like art, anthropology, cookbooks, computers and countesses. TONY deal: Mention TONY for 10 percent off everything in the shop through Wednesday 21. 33-18 Broadway at 34th St (718-267-7929,

Since 2007, Mackenzi Farquer has elected to stockpile atypical accoutrements in her design store—and as a graduate of the New York School of Interior Design, she boasts a well-practiced eye for what's in style. The merch is divided into three sections: vintage, handmade and "just well-designed," and you'll find everything from sleek Saarinen tables and kitschy propaganda posters to come-hither vintage aprons, as well as handmade silver jewelry by Astorian designer Sprout. Keep an open mind here; you might walk in searching for a unique a coin necklace (by Betsy & Iya), but you could easily walk out with a set of vintage ice-cream parlor chairs instead. TONY deal: Mention TONY for 20 percent off everything in the shop through Wednesday 21. 35-11 34th Ave at 35th St (718-626-6030,

Vardiman Eyewear
Manhattanites who have been buying their retro specs at Moscot (open since 1915) for as long as they can remember may find a reason to cheat on the Manhattan eyewear institution, thanks to Vardiman. The store carries high-end frames for men and women by Oliver Peoples, Ray-Ban, Paul Smith and Lafont—not to mention exclusive styles by Japan's Kio Yamato. While the price points are upscale, a trip here is worth it for the service. After you get an eye exam from one of the two doctors on the premisis (Wednesdays and Saturdays are the most busy), Vardiman's multilingual staff (they speak English, Spanish, Korean and Portuguese) will help you pore over cases of eyewear. These do include a number of cheaper options, making the term four eyes totally fly—and affordable. TONY deal: Mention TONY for 20 percent off all frames through Wednesday 21. 34-18 Broadway between 34th and 35th Sts (718-204-5037,


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