Sunday, April 6, 2008

NYC Trim Store Review: Daytona Braids & Trimmings

Address: 251 W. 39th Street (near Eighth Ave.), New York, NYC
Phone: 212-354-1713
Hours: Monday-Friday 9:00 a.m. - 6:30 p.m.; Saturday 9:30 a.m. - 5:30 p.m.
Online store: Daytona Trimming
Best for: Eclectic trim selection, very reasonably priced

If you're shopping at Daytona Braids & Trimmings and happen to notice some movement in the air conditioning pipes overhead, do not panic and immediately recall the news footage you saw of rats overtaking a Manhattan fast food joint. It's only Ric, the friendly orange tabby cat who lives there and keeps watch over the store. Or it could be his brother Rac, who's equally affectionate. Ric and Rac are two good reasons to shop at this trimming mainstay in the garment district, but the hundreds of yards of braid and trim at reasonable prices are why you'll want to come back to Daytona again and again.

Ric the cat (above) patrols Daytona, stopping to allow customers to pet and ooh and ah over him. Gotta love a store with not one but two cats.

I first came here looking for a suitable drawstring for my anorak and found an entire wall of cords in all widths, colors and textures. Looking for ric-rac or braids? There's an unbelievable selection, again in every size and color. I was wowed by all the different kinds of elastic trims they have; this is the definitely the place to go to buy finishing touches for your knits and lingerie. And Daytona also has a worthy array of fancy trims, laces and ribbons—I picked up some Anthropologie/Free People-style trims for my daughter to decorate her Gap tank tops, plus some gold trim for a navy-and-white dress I plan on making.

You'll find a decent selection of out-of-print McCall's patterns, buttons, zippers and other fasteners at Daytona; plus notions, including hard-to-find Klassé sewing machine needles. Upstairs there's 15 to 20 different brands of yarn along with embroidery and needlework thread (and accompanying notions, like knitting needles).

The service at Daytona is pleasant and eager to serve. A young staffer followed me around with a basket and a pair of scissors as I pointed out trims and cords for her to cut. The store is small but well-stocked. I could have easily spent an hour here just taking it all in and cataloging it in my head for future reference. For price and selection, I consider Daytona Braids & Trimmings a must-visit store in the garment district.

Out-of-print McCall's patterns (a quick look led me to believe it was mostly early 90s patterns) in a bin in front of spools of ric-rac.

A wall of ribbons and trims at Daytona.

I couldn't get over how many varieties of elastic Daytona stocks. I think I spent 20 minutes alone just considering the different types of foldover elastic.

In case you're interested, there's plenty of yarn and needlework supplies upstairs at Daytona.
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