1stdibs.com at the NY Design Center
When 1stdibs.com went from click to brick, it was an overnight success, far beyond what was expected. Until the opening of its new home 1stdibs.com was only online. It was the luxury marketplace site for antique and vintage design from the United States, Canada, France, and England. In other words, a treasure trove of jewelry, lighting, furniture, antiquities and especially design classics that you could buy online. Now 1stdibs has expanded to bricks and mortar. Some 53 dealers occupy a huge 1stdibs space on the 10th floor of the New York Design Center in Midtown Manhattan on Lexington Avenue between 32nd and 33rd streets. With the expansion from virtuality to reality, the new 1stdibs@NYDC is a big hit with designers as well as the general public. The Design Center, which in the past was to-the-trade, decorators only, is now open to the general public even on Saturday.
In the new 1stdibs space, hunting for just the right piece of furniture, lighting, or antique is quite pleasant and manageable. The sales staffs at the various booths are particularly knowledgeable while their welcoming attitude makes all the difference. The showroom which takes up the entire floor is a little like an upscale Paris flea market. Take your time while walking around as some of the booths are on overstock and you could easily miss the perfect vase or fruit bowl.
Among the individual booths, Get Back Inc. has enormous appeal with refinished industrial vintage furniture and lighting. Each piece is unique and brought up to an impeccable quality level at the company's workshops in Connecticut.
Another booth well worth checking is WYETH which specializes in museum mid-century modern furniture and antiques, raw industrial metal objects, and rare vintage collectibles. WYETH is currently displaying a bright orange flag line chair by Hans Wegner, $28,000.
Several dealers specialize in mid-century Scandinavian furniture. Darrel Dean is displaying a Danish Modern 1968 orange lacquer wing chair by Peter Karpf, $4,500. Credit Amy Zook Antiques for presenting some iconic pieces of Paul Frankl, a Viennese furniture designer who became the epicenter of Modernism in post WWII New York. Jean-Marc Fray is showing 17th- mid-20th century French and Italian antiques as well as some vintage Murano glass.
The Design Center is reaching out to the general public so it has created a dedicated express elevator to whisk you up to the tenth floor. Details and a list of dealers at www.1stdibs.com.