Allan Pollack and Suzi Kandel were the infamous proprietors and curators of the vintage shops in Soho and the Upper West Side known as Allan & Suzi. As young adults, my friends and I went to the Soho shop all the time, to the chagrin of our parents. Just to vex them, we used to refer to it as the cool A&S. My mother loved the real A&S, and it drove her nuts. She just couldn’t get her head around vintage clothing.
Mom: Donna, what are you wearing to your cousin’s wedding?
Me: I got a dress.
Mom: Is it a new dress?
Me: It’s new to me.
Mom: (eyeroll) Please promise me you’ll wash it at least twice before wearing it.
I was also obsessed with their cable access show, At Home With Allan and Suzi, which came on after Robin Byrd. After the mini-doc below from The New Yorker, you will find the one episode I managed to find. Watching it now, I wonder what I was thinking. It’s pretty terrible, though very camp. We just didn’t have as many TV options in those days!
Even when I was older and no longer shopping for club clothes, I used to find excuses to head to Centre Street so I could just drop in. Most of my weirdest, most favorite clothing came from this pair. I hadn’t heard they’d closed. I’m so sad they’re gone!