Peter and Joy Gryson have lived here for more than a decade, and their handbag company, Gryson, has always been based within walking distance. They started out of their apartment when they lived in north Battery Park City (“We almost killed each other,” says Joy), then they moved to 401 Broadway for a couple of years, then 180 Varick.
Now they’ve just opened their first store—with office in back—called By Joy Gryson. “Peter always wanted a store—whether it was selling handbags or something else—and it was important that it be on Franklin Street,” says Joy. “I’ve always loved shopping at Steven Alan and Bu & the Duck, and when Bu & the Duck left….” The arrival of All Good Things a couple of storefronts away was a very pleasant surprise.
Joy has worked at Liz Claiborne, Coach, Calvin Klein (where she and Peter met), and most recently, Marc Jacobs, where she was Director of Design and Development for Handbags and Accessories. It was her experience at Coach, in particular, that inspired the new store: “You can showcase your product the way you want to, and you can show the line’s breadth. Department stores and boutiques can only carry so much. The essence of the brand doesn’t always get fully across.” Having a store also has cachet with international travelers, who see it as a sign of relevance and are willing to make a pilgrimage.
By Joy Gryson will carry all three of the Gryson brands—Gryson, Olivia Harris (“younger and edgier,” and named after the Grysons’ daughter, now nine), and a new line, IIIBeCa (pronounced “Tribeca,” it has a charitable component—three percent of proceeds are donated to the 9/11 Memorial, the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, and Family Focus Adoption Services). There’s also a capsule collection, utilizing exotic animal hides, called Capsule. And come holiday time, you can expect “wallets and other gifty goods,” says Joy.
The store soft-opened two weeks ago, but the official opening is Thursday night, timed to coincide with Fashion’s Night Out. Joy has to run up to Henri Bendel from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m.—the store is carrying the whole IIIBeCa line—but then she’ll race down to By Joy Gryson for her own party (7–9 p.m.). Bubby’s is bringing pie and spiked lemonade, while Sweet Lily will be offering quick manicures—colors will match the bags—in the showroom. And you’re invited.
By Joy Gryson is at 106 Franklin (between W. Broadway and Church), 212-691-2785; gryson.com.
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