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Buy an Elk Antler Candelabra, African Shoes, Chic Duds in New Seaport Shops

By Irene Plagianos | December 31, 2014 1:39pm
 Several new shops opened on Fulton Street in December.
New Seaport Boutiques
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SOUTH STREET SEAPORT — Three new boutiques are bringing their chic style to the Seaport.

The women-owned stores — Whisper Editions, Brother Vellies and Project Gravitas, which each sit next to each other along Fulton Street — sell unique wares including home goods, handcrafted African shoes and tailored clothing meant to empower women.

The stylish shops each began as online stores before opening their brick-and-mortar storefronts.

Whisper Editions, at 8 Fulton St., sells a mix of curated furniture, jewelry, handbags, photography and other quirky pieces for the stylish shopper.

Owner Judith Puckett-Rinella, a former photography editor for T: The New York Times Style Magazine and Vanity Fair, collaborates on most of the items with a selected group of artisans.

“The aesthetic of the website is very modern and sleek, but for the store, we wanted the warmth, the heartbeat to really come through,” said Puckett-Rinella, 38, who launched her website in 2013. “The store is inspired by the great American lodge and we built the whole thing, with local lumber.”

Puckett-Rinella has even started making some bespoke items of her own, including candelabras made from elk antlers — which, she points out, the animals naturally shed. Prices range from $90 to $300 for the candle holders.

Prices vary for other items in the shop, but Puckett-Rinella said she doesn’t want the pieces to be “wildly cost-prohibitive.”

Next door to Whisper Editions sits Brother Vellies, a shop that features handcrafted shoes from South Africa, Kenya and Namibia. The artisanal footwear is for men, women and children.

The shoes are made from a variety of materials, including leather, fur, rubber from discarded tires and even crocodile skin. Inspired by traditional African styles and made with bright colors and interesting textures, the shoes range from about $195 to more than $1,000.

Project Gravitas, at 4 Fulton St., sells clothing made for women, meant to inspire and boost confidence, according to the shop’s website.

The shop’s owner, Lisa Sun, said she launched the clothing line to give women a feeling of “gravitas” with help from well-crafted clothing, according to her website.

A well-tailored dress is the centerpiece of the store’s women’s clothing, made with Italian fabrics and specially crafted shapewear meant to hide flaws.

Items in the shop, which sell for about $175 to $450, are actually just pieces to try on. All sales are still made through the website Sun launched in 2013.