What are you wearing to brunch in Harlem?
Posted on December 22, 2016

Harlem Haberdashery displays boutique t-shirts and funky pieces in a boho chic setting
Hello fellow uptowners. Have you found yourself sitting at the Red Rooster in Harlem, watching as one fashionista after another walks by, wondering how can I get that fly? Well, as good as it is, staring into your Harlem Punch and chowing down on the best brunch in Harlem isn’t going to help.

Bebenoir Harlem boutique shows simple basic pieces in a modern-earthy storefront
Hopefully, I had the pleasure of turning one of the perfect apartments in harlem into your new uptown pad. But a #fun_fashionable_agent ’s job is never done. All you fashionistas living in harlem wanna know how to amp your style on a budget, right? I’m gonna’ give you a few pointers on what to do in harlem as a style savvy New Yorker and tell you about some of my favorite places to shop right here in our neighborhood. (Don’t worry, you’ll still be able to pay your rent).

Library scene in Studio Museum Harlem
First, let’s get started with what’s already in your closet. Pour yourself a glass of wine and try on as much as you can. Whatever doesn’t make you feel good, place in a bag to be donated. Great tax deduction! The key to personal style is feeling confident in whatever your wearing. Trends are fun, but don’t get lost in them.

Customers walking out of the open-air market, Malcolm Shabazz Harlem Market
You’re not going to see me running around uptown in a holey hoody. I’m not Luke Cage, and my last name isn’t West. When replacing your wardrobe back into your closet, organization is key. You can only wear what you can find. You can categorize based on colors, seasons, or even the item’s purpose (work, play, etc).

It's really not about how many pieces you have, but how many different ways you can rock ‘em. Think versatility. With most outfits, you can go from work to happy hour, maybe switching shoes or adding an accessory. Suits are the only thing that should come in sets, and even then, mix and match them to create new looks.

Now let's go shopping! Ok, how many apartments in harlem did you look at before finding the perfect one? You know all of your favorite things to do in harlem, right? You know exactly how you like your coffee at ACP Coffee. It shouldn't be any different when shopping for clothes and accessories. Mix and mingle. Make your shopping trip a great day in harlem, shopping should be a party! Don't buy everything in the same store on the same day. No need to drown yourself in designer labels and credit card debt.

Shop for look, feel, fit and style. My favorite term is high/ low style, meaning mix affordable and designer. Be sure your designer items are classic cuts and colors that you can mix, match and layer throughout the seasons. Save your fun, and colorful patterns for accessories. Comparison shop across brands, stores, and web sites, being sure to stay within a realistic budget.

Accessories should be where you spend the bulk of your fashion budget. This is where you should have the most fun and define your style persona. This is no fashion secret; it’s all in the details. When it comes to accessories, less is always more. The smallest things can make the biggest statements. To quote Coco Chanel “Once you've dressed, and before you leave the house, look in the mirror and take at least one thing off”.

Build your foundation from one accessory category, i.e., handbags, scarves, bowties, shoes, etc. Think of it as that hot sauce in your bag, swag. Yes, slay like Beyonce (lol) Look for original pieces you love.

The best way to do this is to purchase your accessories from local artisans. In most cases they will be one of a kind pieces. While living in harlem, you can find these creations on tables walking up 125th Street, and in the Malcolm Shabazz Harlem Market on 116th. You can also find them in local consignment shops and boutiques like Harlem Haberdashery, Bebenoir, and The Studio Museum in Harlem.

In closing, you have to set a budget and define what style means to you and what role it’s going to play in your life. Always let it be your supporting cast. Let your personality be the star. I hope to see you walking the runway (or should I say the streets of Harlem), or out to brunch in Harlem displaying your personal style.

To loving, living and being an Uptowner, Drop me off in harlem! #harlemagent signing out.