Bene, Bene! It’s All Good:
New Concept Shop Bene Rialto
Opens Doors in Fashion District

Bene Rialto Store

From the front windows on the second floor

When I was there almost a month ago, the view from inside the still-under-construction new shopping venue Bene Rialto, which means “Good Marketplace” in Italian, was stunning, even without the excitement and flutter of new up-and-coming designers and their wares that the department boutique is going to spotlight. (My pictures show Bene Rialto’s venue under construction, but the “department store boutique” should be well under way by now.)

Bene Rialto CEO Caryn Neary, who hails from a tenure including Saks Fifth Avenue as well as her own former Hell’s Kitchen boutique Bump-to-Baby, underscores Bene Rialto as “an innovative marketplace,” that will showcase independent fashion brands, as well as food and art.

Caryn Neary, CEO Bene Rialto, with teammate Jo Polanco

Caryn Neary, CEO of Bene Rialto, with teammate Jo Polanco, discussing what will be

This new kind of department store, smack in the middle of the New York garment district, is right around the corner from Lord & Taylor. Get ready to welcome not only new fashion brands, but also emerging chefs, artisans, and teachers and the like. And be prepared to graze, meet and connect. “Our goal is to foster an environment of creativity and learning, taking a brand to the next level,” Caryn and the Bene Rialto website say.

Event space on the top two floors of the five stories, Bene Collective, will host showroom areas for a limited number of brands, with a membership option available. Brands may choose to participate in industry wide events, classes, presentations and more. The bottom three floors, Bene Rialto proper, will house a unique mix of new designers with the store providing online presence to showcase new brands’ collections direct to consumers as well as the trade.

Stay tuned…and check back in to read all about the opening party set for the 23rd!

From the skylight on the top floor

From the skylight on the top floor

Bene Rialto Store


King Street – The Charleston Retail Scene

When the mood for shopping strikes you in Charleston, be sure to meander your way down King Street toward the Battery, the shopping destination for Lowcountry fashionistas and style mavens.




Accented with Gucci, Bob Ellis, Apple, RTW, Billy Reid and the original Lowcountry style-maker, Berlin’s, King Street dusted itself off several years ago and made the locals proud. But don’t forget to take in the newest downtown shopping area – Upper King Street – where the burgeoning development district is garnering local news as the hipster retail and foodie spot.

The Ordinary Restaurant King Street

The Ordinary Restaurant on Upper King Street

Stores like JLinSnider and Charleston Stitch, plus restaurants like The Ordinary and Two Boroughs Larder are bringing a coolness factor to Upper King, much as North Six Street is ratcheting up the attitude of Williamsburg off of New York City.

JLinSnider Charleston Stitch

RTW, long a forerunner of high fashion on the main vein of downtown Charleston, has always held forth with fashion with a capital “F” and Charleston Fashion Week last month was no exception. The retailer hosted a trunk show with New York up-and-coming talent, Brandon Sun.

RTW King Street

Worthwhile, meanwhile, has been thrilling Lowcountry style-philes and traveling fashionistas for over 20 years, and is a must-see on the style scene. Its wares are avant garde and sophisticated, with a smattering of home design accoutrements and objets.

Worthwhile King Street

Recent retail newcomer Ike Behar, featured as one of the local retailers presenting a runway show during CFW, proffers both a tailored and snazzy casual southern charm. It’s a perfect fit for the genteel Charleston-style mentality.

Ike Behar King Street

Everyone from the fashion world whom I spoke with during CFW raved about Hampden Clothing. The boutique is a mecca for more fashion-forward clothing, from designers like Rag & Bone to Theory to Alexander Wang and Rebecca Taylor. Over nearly decade, the shop has been educating Charleston consumers and pushing them ever closer to the fashion edge.

Spoleto is just right around the corner. What better time to book that ticket to warmer climes south of the Mason Dixon and get your southern charm on?

Hampden Clothing King Street

Billy Reid King Street Ben Silver Clock King Street

Old Love. My Vintage Crush on Olive’s and Olaf’s Owner Jen McCulloch

Lately, I keep finding myself on Court Street near Carroll Gardens . Very chi chi and chock full of cool fashion finds. Especially this shop. One of my new fave places now is Jen McCulloch’s little gem of a shop, Olive’s Very Vintage, which has led me to be Very In Love with this lady and her Very Vintage aesthetic! What took me so long?! For weeks, my friend *m had been raving to me about this great little vintage place she’d found, so I took a deep breath, stocked the car with some of my old designer clothes and unique thrift that I no longer needed or could wear, and headed out to Brooklyn for some upcycling purposes.  Look! Even the tree outside is stylishly decorated in vintage lace.


I may have parted ways with some of my old favorite pieces (let’s say a prayer in memory of Continue reading

Sag Harbor Style – Duck & Weave, Double RL and Clic

Duck & Weave Sag HarborLast week’s retail recon found FashionWhirled jaunting out to the Hamptons for a quick style whirl. Did you know that Sag Harbor was one of the oldest whaling ports on the East Coast and was mentioned in Moby Dick in four chapters?!

Loved Robin Saidman’s petit chic boutique, Duck & Weave, which carries our favorite Loup Charmant alongside his own Sagaponack men’s and women’s shirts, beauties with a lightweight, sheer beachy feel. He stocks the shop with a great assortment of lovely flowy dresses, soft tees, tote bags and other accessories like rugged rail road spike bracelets from Giles & Brother.

Duck & Weave Sag Harbor

Beachy feel interior of Duck & Weave

Duck & Weave founder Robin Saidman

Founder Robin Saidman in his own shirt design

The always-inviting Double R.L. store beckoned and we answered its call….

Double R.L. Sag Harbor

Inviting windows, no?



Double R.L. East Hampton

Love the screen door entrance

Windows of Clic, another store that was singing the siren song of shopping for us!

Clic East Hampton

Summer beach windows at Clic East Hampton

just for the color!
just for the color!