Monday, February 29, 2016

Delicatessen on Fifth Avenue in Brooklyn

Delicatessen on Fifth Avenue in Brooklyn has a great #vintage #sign with wonderful green #script lettering. This #deli has been closed as long as we can remember and the #signage is peeling away but it still looks great to us. We also love all of the #rust and #graffiti on the doorway.

Saturday, February 27, 2016

1949 International a130 Metro Van

The International Harvester Metro Van was produced in the United States from 1938 until 1975 and sold internationally. Unlike their trucks and other vehicles, the Metro bodies were built by the Metropolitan Body Company on Grand Street in Bridgeport, Connecticut, a company that International Harvester would later purchase in 1948.
The original design was by Raymond Loewy of Studebaker and Coke bottle fame. The Metro design was one of several with which Loewy was involved or created during his association with International Harvester.

G&M Variety Discounts House, Closed

G&M Variety Discounts House on upper Broadway was a #hardware store that also sold housewares, school supplies, and other discounted items. We loved its colorful #vintage #signage with its intersesting #typography. Sadly it is no longer in business and has been replaced by an upscale pet store as this Manhattan neighborhood has become gentrified. Photo from 2004 appears in our book "Store Front: The Disappearing Face of New York." #storefront #type #font #fontastic #disappearingfaceofnewyork #popyacolour #signgeeks #nyc

Thursday, February 25, 2016

The Disappearing Face of New York - One More Folded Sunset

Thank you so much for the love and support @onemorefoldedsunset

"The books pay tribute to the small, independent, family-run & rapidly disappearing businesses of New York City, with page after page of glorious images. Some of the photographs show businesses anyone even briefly acquainted with the city would know, while others are landmarks only in their own neighborhoods."

Casa del Disco, Belmont " The Little Italy of The Bronx".

 The shop is no longer in business.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Eggy's Beauty Salon in South Beach, Miami has a fantastic ‪#‎retro‬ ‪#‎sign‬. ‬

Not sure why this old-school ‪#‎beauty‬ parlor was called "Eggy's" as we couldn't find out much from the present owners but we sure love that ‪#‎script‬ ‪#‎lettering‬ and that ‪#‎font‬ on the "S" in salon.

1969 Plymouth Satellite South Beach Miami

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Burkina, the "World Famous Hip-Hop Shop" on the Lower East Side is sadly no longer in business.

It was located in this East Houston Street #storefront for 16 years before it was forced to move to First Avenue in 2011, where it remained in business until 2014. We bought many custom designed #tshirts at the store and were sad to see it close. Photo from 2004 appears in our book "Store Front: The Disappearing Face of New York".

Shelborne Hotel, Miami Beach

This historic ‪#‎hotel‬ recently underwent a $90 million renovation and reopened as the Shelborne Wyndham Grand. The hotel's original rear half was designed by the Igor Polevitzky, with a front addition designed by architect Morris Lapidus, designed to match Polevitzky's style. We love that they restored the ‪#‎vintage‬ ‪#‎neon‬ sign and the hotel's old terrazzo floors. They even have an apothecary-themed bar with bartenders serving in lab coats.

Monday, February 22, 2016

Candlelight III Bar. NYC

Candlelight III Bar has everything an ‪#‎abandoned‬ ‪#‎storefront‬ should have!‬ Plenty of ‪#‎rust‬, a great ‪#‎vintage‬ ‪#‎sign‬ completele with ‪#‎script‬ lettering and ‪#‎graffiti‬ on its pull-down gate. We are not sure why this closed but imagine it might have something to do with the gentrification of the neighborhood. ‪

Saturday, February 20, 2016

"Engaging Readers; Preserving Storefronts" - Sunday New York Times Bookshelf by Sam Roberts (This article appears in print on February 21, 2016)

 "Tired of the same old banks, chain drugstores, coffee bars and fast food franchises proliferating in your neighborhood? Savor “Store Front II: A History Preserved, the Disappearing Face of New York” (Gingko Press, $65), by James T. Murray and Karla L. Murray."

Web version: 

Friday, February 19, 2016

In honor of the last day of ‪#‎NYFW‬ in New York City yesterday we are posting our photo of the ‪#‎fashionable‬ Ripi Latest Style Dresses in the Bronx. ‪

#‎ralphlauren‬ grew up in the ‪#‎Bronx‬ in the forties and fifties and we can imagine his parents possibly shopping at this ‪#‎store‬. Ripi Latest Style Dresses is sadly no longer in business but we love its ‪#‎vintage‬ ‪#‎handpainted‬ ‪#‎sign‬ with its ‪#‎script‬ ‪#‎lettering‬. Photo from 2004 appears in our book "Store Front: The Disappearing Face of New York".

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Frank's Shoe Repairs on West 207th Street in Inwood is no longer in business.

We love its ‪#‎vintage‬ ‪#‎handpainted‬ sign and the ‪#‎neon‬ Shoe Repair ‪#‎sign‬ in the window. Frank's also had an original interior complete with ‪#‎shoe‬ making machinery that was over 100 years old. Photo from 2004 appears in our book "Store Front: The Disappearing Face of New York".

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

The Emerald Pub in what is now known as the South Village closed in April 2015.

The Irish bar, which opened in 1972 was used in Martin Scorscese's movie "After Hours" as the location of the "Terminal Bar".‬ This is an outtake from our book NEW YORK NIGHTS.

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Kim's Video & Music on St. Marks Place, East Village, NYC. Circa 2001.

Kim's Video closed its flagship store in 2009. The founder Yongman Kim opened his first store on Avenue A in 1987 and his St. Mark's Place store which opened in 1995 was considered to have the best and most diverse video-rental collection in New York City. In the pre-Internet age, Kim's selection was often the only way to find and see obscure films from around the world. When video rental sales declined and he was forced to close his St. Mark's store, Kim shipped his entire 55,000 eclectic film collection to Sicily.

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Happy Valentines Day! ❤

In honor of Valentines Day we are posting Sweet Heart Coffee on Eighth Avenue by West 13th Street in the West Village. We loved its ‪#‎handpainted‬ ‪#‎sign‬ and ‪#‎neon‬ ‪#‎signs‬ in the window. We often stopped at this ‪#‎coffee‬ shop/ ‪#‎bakery‬ on our way to the Hudson River but sadly it is no longer in business as this area by the Meat Packing district has become gentrified.

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Four people were indicted today for manslaughter and other charges in connection with the East Village gas explosion

Four people were indicted today for manslaughter and other charges in connection with the East Village gas explosion and fire that killed two people, injured 22 others and caused the complete destruction of three buildings on Second Avenue at East 7th Street.  The building owner where the blast happened, her son and the contractor and the plumber who improperly hooked up the building's gas lines were all charged.

A few months ago we took this photo of Nicholas Figueroa's father tending to his son's memorial site at 121 Second Avenue, the site of the gas explosion and fire which killed his son. His mother talked to us about the loss of their 23-year old son and how hard it has been coping with it. His father placed a Statue of Mary and a keepsake box at the memorial and also tends to the memorial for the other victim, Moises Locon. ‪#‎eastvillage‬ ‪#‎memorial‬ ‪#‎igs_nyc‬ ‪#‎family‬ ‪#‎love‬ ‪#‎loss‬ ‪#‎newyork_instagram‬ ‪#‎newyork_ig‬


THE ORIGINAL CRAB SHANTY RESTAURANT located at 361 City Island Avenue in the ‪#‎Bronx‬ was founded in 1977 and serves both ‪#‎seafood‬ and ‪#‎Italian‬ style dishes. In the early 1900s, the building in which the restaurant is located functioned as a silent movie theater, complete with tall ceilings. The The Original Crab Shanty, although not located on the water like many of its nearby competitors, became very popular due to its large portions of great quality food, reasonable prices and great service. Many of the same waitresses and staff have been working at the restaurant since it opened. Michelle Valenti-Debitetto told us, “We are definitely one of the oldest continuously run family restaurants in City Island. I’ve been the manager for the last 20 years but I started working here when I was only twelve years old as a salad girl. We make people feel comfortable and welcome them into our restaurant as if they were dining in their own home.” Photo and full interview appear in our book "New York Nights".

To read and see more of our suggestions of "The Best Old School NYC Places To Take Your Valentine" go to:

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

We pick some of our old school favorites for Gothamist: The Best Old School NYC Places To Take Your Valentine

Choosing an old-school restaurant, cafĂ©, or bar that's steeped in history is an easy way to make your Valentine's Day date special. All of the mom-and-pop businesses we will be highlighting have stood the test of time in a city known for its rapid pace of change. We have included pairings for dinner and drinks/dessert in Manhattan, Brooklyn, the Bronx, and Queens. Whether it be a romantic ambiance, delicious specialities, the glow of neon that washes over their facade, hand-painted murals along their interior walls, or a pleasant mix of all of these things, these choices will help make the night a success. — James and Karla Murray

Eduardo Kobra uses Michael Halsband image of Jean-Michel Basquiat and Andy Warhol as inspiration.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

CARNEGIE DELI reopened today after being closed for 10 months

CARNEGIE DELI reopened today after being closed for 10 months following a gas shut off in the building when Con Ed discovered that gas had been diverted inside the building before reaching the meter. Carnegie was established in 1937 and has a vintage neon sign that we admire. We interviewed Chuck Smith, the manager, for our book "New York Nights" who told us that "The neon sign outside is 65 years old. We are constantly fixing it because it’s very temperamental but we always want to keep it lit because it is iconic. We are best known for our pastrami, corned beef and brisket sandwiches, which are overstuffed with at least one pound of meat. We pickle and smoke all of our own meat that we serve." Photo and full interview appear in "New York Nights" (Gingko Press 2012)

The Hotel Evernia was built in 1925.

 Originally called the Hotel Enoree, it is three stories hign and has forty rooms. In 1979, Gene Sheppard restored the building, and renamed it the Hotel Evernia. To this day it remains a family-run ‪#‎hotel‬.

Monday, February 8, 2016

Happy Lunar New Year!

Nom Wah Tea Parlor on Doyers Street is the oldest dim sum restaurant in Chinatown. It was founded in 1920 and us now being run by 2nd generation owner Wilson Tang. It's gorgeous ‪#‎vintage‬ ‪#‎sign‬ was installed around 1968. Most of the interior is original including the lunch counter and stools. We love everything they serve but are especially fond of their steamed dumplings and Shrimp Sui Mai. Photo and full interview appears in our book "Store Front: The Disappearing Face of New York."

1949 Chrysler Windsor Coupe

In 1949, for Chrysler's 25th anniversary, Chrysler Windsors were redesigned. The style was boxier than the competition with a padded dashboard with sponge rubber for safety. Chrysler replaced the Windsor name in 1962 with the introduction of the non-lettered series Chrysler 300.

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Nick's Luncheonette, Williamsburg, ‪Brooklyn‬

Nick's Luncheonette located at 196 Broadway in Williamsburg, ‪#‎Brooklyn‬ has been closed for as long as we can remember. This photo was taken in the mid 1990s using 35mm film. We looked up the address in the ‪#‎NYC‬ tax photos which are digitally archived and available free of charge and found that the business was closed in 1983 when the tax photo was taken. The building itself was built in 1910 and was owned by I. Bernbluth. Interestingly the tax photo revealed that the ‪#‎signage‬ once had a Coca-Cola logo on it to the right of the ‪#‎luncheonette‬ ‪#‎letters‬ and was a good example of a classic Privilege ‪#‎Sign‬ that was given free of charge to ‪#‎store‬ owners as a promotional marketing campaign. We love how the ‪#‎storefront‬ is covered with rust and ‪#‎graffiti‬.

Friday, February 5, 2016

The New Kossar's Bagels & Bialys Re-opening Today

Kossar's Bialys located at 367 Grand Street between Essex and Norfolk Streets has been in business since 1936. The bakery is famous for their freshly baked bialys, which are chewy, flat, round rolls with a slightly depressed center containing onions. Kossar’s Bialys was founded by Morris Kossar, who emigrated from Bialystok, the second largest city in Poland in 1905. For our book, STORE FRONT- The Disappearing Face of New York, we interviewed the third owner of Kossar's, Deborah Engelmayer, who took over the business with her husband in 1998. She told us, "What makes a bialy different than a bagel is, first of all, the ingredients are different. There are much less ingredients in a bialy. They don’t have sugar and they don’t have malt and they are flat rather than puffed up because they actually have more yeast than a bagel. Bialys are also very temperamental. You really have to baby them because all they are made from is flour, water, yeast, and salt. A true bialy has to be prepared completely differently than a bagel and made only in large batches, which is why we are so special and so famous. We make both bialys and bagels here and actually have two separate bakeries in this store. On the ground floor is the bialy bakery and downstairs we have a full separate bagel bakery with a separate mixer and separate ovens. Most places don’t sell as many bialys as bagels but we make four times the amount of bialys than we do bagels daily and that is why we are able to make a better quality and consistent product. On a typical day, we sell about 250 dozen bialys and about 40 dozen bagels. The name of our shop is Kossar’s Bialys. We make bagels, but we are known for our bialys. We usually start baking at 4 or 4:30 A.M. every morning. Every day for our morning bialy baking, we use about 400 pounds of high-gluten flour, about 28 gallons of water, 4 pounds of salt and 6 pounds of yeast."
The Engelmayer's sold the business in 2013 to Evan Giniger and David Zablocki, who just recently renovated the entire storefront, rebranded the business, and expanded the offerings to include other varieties of specialty bialys including the controversial whole-wheat bialy and sun-dried tomato flavor. They are also selling homemade cream cheeses and a new line of breakfast sandwiches and pizza bagels.

STORE FRONT II: A History Preserved by Robert Brenner for Huffington Post New York

Writer Robert Brenner picks some of his favorites from our new book!

Thanks to all the writers, bloggers, radio hosts and friends who have helped get the word out. STORE FRONT II is closing in on selling out its first edition...We really appreciate the love and support!

Thursday, February 4, 2016

The Coffee Shop on Union Square West

The Coffee Shop on Union Square West in Manhattan has been in business since 1990 but the vertically overhanging ‪#‎neon‬ ‪#‎sign‬ is from 1960 when the space was a Greek ‪#‎diner‬. When the present owners took over the location in 1990 they repurposed the diner's lunch counter to form a bar and kept this ‪#‎vintage‬ ‪#‎signage‬ for @thecoffeeshopnyc. We are glad they did because we love to see it glow across Union Square! ‪#‎neonsign‬ ‪#‎neongeeks‬ ‪#‎signgeeks‬ ‪#‎type‬ ‪#‎typography‬ ‪#‎font‬ #signgeeks ‪#‎nyc‬ ‪#‎storefront‬ ‪#‎popyacolour

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Concourse Music Center in the Bronx. Closed.

Concourse Music Center in the Bronx was located right on the Grand Concourse, a grand boulevard modeled on the design of the Champs-Elysees in Paris. Construction on the four-mile road began in 1894 and was opened to traffic in 1909. In 1939 the Grand Concourse was described as the "Park Avenue of the Bronx". Sadly this #music #store is no longer in business. We loved its #handpainted #signage! Photo from 2004 appears in our book "Store Front: The Disappearing Face of New York".

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

"The Urban Lens: Documenting Gentrification’s Toll on the Mom-and-Pops of Greenwich Village" February 2, 2016 by James & Karla Murray

"Award-winning authors and photographers James and Karla Murray bring us 15 years of images documenting the changing storefronts of Bleecker Street in Greenwich Village. " 

Pitkin Grocery Store in East New York, Brooklyn (Closed)

Pitkin Grocery Store in East New York, Brooklyn is no longer in business. We loved this neighborhood #bodega with its worn facade and #handpainted #signage. Bodegas like this are often the only place locals can buy groceries because their neighborhood lacks big grocery stores. In our own neighborhood of the East Village we are currently joining a fight to save our local grocery store which unfortunately is being kicked out (lease not being renewed) to make way for a new gym for the housing complex it is located in. #storefront #disappearingfaceofnewyork #sign #signgeeks #type #typography #font #myfeatureshoot

An assortment of NEW Prints are now available including this photo! Our limited edition signed prints range in size from 20x24 to 40x50 inches as well as a few select 11x14 prints. All C-prints are printed on Kodak Professional Endura Lustre Paper. Contact us by email or direct message for pricing and more info. Also available are signed copies of both Store Front and Store Front II.‪#‎storefront‬ ‪#‎signgeeks‬ ‪#‎sign‬ ‪#‎type‬ ‪#‎typography‬ ‪#‎neon‬ ‪#‎neongeeks‬‪#‎bakery‬ ‪#‎Italian‬

Monday, February 1, 2016

1937 Chevrolet Suburban Carryall

The Suburban is the longest continuous use automobile nameplate in production, starting from 1933 for the 1935 U.S. model year. It has been one of General Motors' most profitable vehicles. There has been twelve generations of Chevrolet Suburbans since its 1935 debut.