New Kid on the Block: Bit’z Kids

Bit’z Kids has chosen Tribeca as the location for its second store in New York City (and the U.S.); the first one opened on the Upper West Side in 2008. Manager Masako Chiba (above) says that as a parent, she knew that it made sense to put the new store where there are good schools—Soho or Times Square were suggested as possibilities, but Tribeca made more sense. “I wanted the neighborhood feeling, the sense of community,” she says. “Plus, there’s the Whole Foods across the street.”

Bit’z Kids is a subsidiary of F.O. International, the largest children’s clothing company in Japan, where it has 140 stores. The Bit’z Kids brand is unique to the U.S., however; the clothing here is only sold online and at the two New York City stores.

The clothes, for kids up to 8 years old, are designed in Japan, but you’d hardly know it from many of the New York–centric designs (shirts mention Greenpoint, Top of the Rock, and more). There are lots of on-trend options sure to please discriminating fashion senses—both adults’ and kids’. Especially popular are the “comfy pants,” which have elastic waistbands and are available for boys and girls. That they’re easy-on, easy-off makes them handy for toilet training. The store also carries Little Bit’z, a new line of clothing for newborns, and even—a nod to its Japanese heritage—miniature kimonos.

“When I take my own daughter shopping, she might end up crying and screaming,” says Chiba, so the store installed a play area (right) where kids can occupy themselves. Bit’z Kids also has a diaper-changing area in the bathroom, and the dressing room can be used for nursing. Chiba hopes the Tribeca outpost will become a place where parents and kids drop by just to hang out. To that end, she’s considering offering origami classes like the ones at the Upper West Side store.

Bit’z Kids is at 275 Greenwich (between Warren and Murray); 212-571-0803,

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