Friday, April 17, 2009


Growing up near Albany in upstate New York, Taylor remembers visiting New York City and never venturing south of Houston Street. Then, as a fledgling model, she moved to Manhattan and discovered that starting off in the industry can mean more grit than glitz. With “something like $150 a week to live on,” says Taylor, she moved to the Lower East Side, but was pleased to discover that the neighborhood was jam-packed with quirky mom-and-pop shops, hip hole-in-the-wall eateries, and plenty of cheap surprises around every corner. “It’s a very special part of the city,” says Taylor. “The Hispanic culture is alive and it’s staying as true as it can to its roots.” Beyond the shops and restaurants listed below, Taylor says that the LES is all about finding entertainment in the sorts of places you won’t see in glossy magazines. “There’s this couple that makes snow cones and sells them on the street in the summertime, a great little Chinese place that sells 99-cent buns, a dollar store on Clinton Street I’m obsessed with, and don’t get me started on the 24-hour McDonald’s on Delancey Street. It’s still just a really cute area that’s got a lot of character.”

Sugar Sweet Sunshine
This kitschy bakery has a cult following, and Taylor is a major fan. “All I can talk about is food,” she jokes. “That’s really all I do. This is by far the best cupcake place in the city, and the cupcakes are like $1.50. I get the Sexy Red Velvet, which has white frosting. I think they have a great sense of humor in there, too.”
126 Rivington Street
New York, NY 10002

Schiller’s Liquor Bar
By night, Schiller’s is packed with scenesters sipping cocktails, but by day it’s a serious spot for hearty plates of bacon and eggs. Says Taylor, “I could eat breakfast all day; it’s my favorite meal.” She also loves staking out a table and flipping through all the free magazines. “I kind of love doing the New York magazine crossword there, which is free entertainment.”
131 Rivington Street
New York, NY 10002

Tiny’s Giant Sandwich Shop
In between shoots and castings, Taylor became a huge fan of the over-stuffed tuna sandwiches at the ironically named Tiny’s. “I can’t really tell you where to get good sushi and salad in New York, I’m all about the carbs.” But don’t hate her for her speedy metabolism. “I kind of hate it when people say they were born really thin, but I’m very lucky as far as what I can eat…so far.”
129 Rivington Street
New York, NY 10002


At this tiny vintage treasure trove, Taylor scopes out great accessories like belts and bags. “It’s really well-edited, so it’s not the kind of place where you have to dig around for hours to find something you love.” It may be a bit of a splurge, but Taylor likes to view her purchases there as investments. “The owners have a really good eye and it’s timeless stuff.”
161 Rivington Street
New York, NY 10002

Honey in the Rough
This sliver of a boutique, which shares the same building as Narnia, sells looks from designers like Thread Social and Anna Sui. “Every time I go in there, I seem to find a funny little dress I just have to have.”
161 Rivington Street
New York, NY 10002

Hotel on Rivington
For out-of-towners looking to get a taste of Taylor’s LES, this swank hotel may be out of the young model’s budget, but it’s ideally located. “I think like anyone living in New York,” says Taylor. “You rarely leave a five-block radius. But there’s so much to discover just by walking down the side streets, I tell people to spend a day exploring, watching the kids play at the Rivington Street playground.”
107 Rivington Street
New York, NY 10002


You’re not likely to find Taylor hitting up trendy clubs, though she does occasionally head to this low-key music venue to see her boyfriend’s band play. “I used to go to the MisShapes parties on Saturday nights and it was affected and awful, but it was still fun. But going out in New York is just too cool for me right now. I’m not that cool. Anything with a door policy gives me anxiety. I’d rather stay home.”
158 Ludlow Street
New York, NY 10002

Economy Candy Corporation

When she’s looking for novelty gifts for friends, this store, packed with hard-to-find candies, is the go-to place. “It’s like a time machine in there!” Regular buys? “I love popcorn-flavored Jelly Bellys, I can’t help myself. And I like weird stuff like Big League gum, which looks like chewing tabacco, because it’s just so wrong.” But she warns: “Do not go in there on the weekends. The line wraps itself around the store twice, it’s just so packed.”
108 Rivington Street
New York, NY 10002

Modelinia is AMAZING. Check it out please if you haven't already. :)



Lindsay said...

Love this. Esp since I'm moving to the LES next month :D

Thanks for sharing!

Chloe said...

No, you're amazing!

Anonymous said...



Anonymous said...

i want to go to a place called pianos...

shopgirl28 said...

It sounds like a fun place to live.

Motel Face said...

I'm to start a fansite.
Hope that's cool with you.
Not sure when it'll be up and running in full mode, but it's

taylor warren said...

Awwww thank you, that's amazing!!!

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