The Port Authority is one of the worst, grossest places in midtown. But next month, that might not be the case, when a monthlong pop-up shop opens in the heart of the bus terminal. The 2,500-square-foot space is called Blank SL8 and was created to showcase design, fashion, and visual arts created by New Yorkers. Fashion website Refinery 29 came up with the idea along with the Fashion Center Business Improvement District. An FCBID rep tells WWD, “As we are having this conversation about zoning [in the Garment Center] we feel we have to address that fashion has an address [in the neighborhood] that is here to stay.” Just because it’s a bus terminal doesn’t mean it can’t save the garment district.
The pop-up shop is the first fashion-related event to be held in Blank SL8. About 60 labels will be sold in the space with at least a 50 percent markdown. Each week, new labels will be featured. They include Rachel Comey, Madewell, Victoria Bartlett/VPL, Charlotte Ronson, Acne, and Rogan. The third week will be devoted to menswear, and will include labels like Steven Alan and Thom Browne’s Black Fleece. To up the glam factor of the whole endeavor, designers will make cameos in the store, possibly while you’re shopping. So the fashion set is not only selling its things in Port Authority, it will actually go there to mingle with the commoners. Imagine: “So I went shopping in Port Authority today.” “That’s disgusting.” “I know. But I got Thom Browne Black Fleece for 50 percent off. Oh, and Thom was there to help me pick out my pants. And then we split a pretzel.” Recession indeed!