JON CARAMANICA GOES SHOPPING:
Pseudo Surf Edition
June 13, 2012
This week's Critical Shopper, Jon Caramanica, makes a tribute of sorts so the beginning of Summer as he somewhat cruelly compares SoHo's Saturday's Surf NYC, the editor's darling and one of GQ's Best New Menswear Designers with Pilgrim Surf + Supply, an actual surf store.
It's almost unfair to compare the two at all. After all, the "Surf" on Saturday's banner is in much smaller type, and the brand's real meat and potatoes is crisp, casual sportswear that technically require no waves. Surfing here seems to be more of a theme than a goal as our shopper tells us, "There’s a rack of surfboards near the front of the store, like an art display you walk past to get to the clothes".
Conversely, while Williamsburg has more than its share of poseurs, its Pilgrim Surf + Supply appears to be the real thing,
While I was at Pilgrim, someone drove up in a small truck and pulled a surfboard out of the back, which he proceeded to scrutinize with a couple of friends. I asked a salesman with a load of curls atop his head and sun-reddened skin if he wouldn’t rather be in the ocean than working the floor, and he said “Of course.”
Well, that clarifies things for anyone hung up on tiresome concepts like "authenticity" or "street credibility". Obviously, The Shophound will be shopping at Saturday's.
Critical Shopper: The Big Wave Will Have to Wait By Jon Caramanica (NYTimes)
Saturday's Surf NYC 31 Crosby Street between Broome & Grand Streets, SoHo
Pilgrim Surf + Supply 68 North Third Street at Wythe Avenue, Williamsburg