ON LOEHMANN’S LAST DAY EVER, AN EMPTY FEELING

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Loehmann’s on Broadway between 73rd and 74th streets closed its doors for good on Wednesday, selling its last items of clothing and most of its fixtures.

The store will be open on Thursday for people to pick up anything they might have bought but hadn’t taken home, and they’ll sell off any more fixtures that remain. But the clothes are gone, and the shelves are bare because there are no shelves. Loehmann’s liquidated after filing for bankruptcy and failing to find a buyer. Its store on Broadway was one of four in New York City. It’s not clear yet what will replace it.

Frieda Loehmann opened the first store in 1921 in Brooklyn, and it became famous for its deals on designer clothes. In the “back room,” European designer outfits could be had for a fraction of the normal retail cost.

Back in the day, the dressing rooms were communal. Employees at the local Loehmann’s said several customers came in reminiscing about those dressing rooms. A salesman named Abraham said one customer told him about her own shock as a teenager in Brooklyn to suddenly be in a room with nearly-nude strangers. One writer put it like this:

“Imagine a large room whose walls are lined with mirrors, benches and hooks to hold clothes. There is absolutely no privacy. Each woman takes up a station, hangs her clothes and then performs the ‘communal dressing room dance.’ There are several variations of this dance and some women are better than others at it. Some women immediately strip down to their underwear and begin to try on clothes. Sometimes these are the ‘Bo Derek 10’s,’ but not always. Since everyone is in plain sight of one another, everyone is treated to whatever is going on in the room — even if you try to avoid it.”

Employees told us customers have been emotional in the last few weeks during the liquidation sale, even crying as they surveyed the store for the last time. Below, check out some pictures of the empty store, and a video of one of the employees talking about its last days.

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NEWS, OPEN/CLOSED | 4 comments | permalink
    1. Catherine says:

      It’s really too bad because after the big change over this past year, the clothing was better,more high end in all of the store, not just the Back Room. Really too bad. And Fox’s is soon leaving too. Not everyone can afford, not can they find things they like and fit at Barney’s Annex.

    2. Tim g. says:

      Maybe they can use the vacant space for a charter school?

    3. Logan Lo says:

      What a shame – they brought a really different vibe to the block after a few failed supermarkets.

      Wonder what’s coming up next?

    4. Nora says:

      According to some of the sales people at Fox’s they are looking for a location in the neighborhood to move when, and if, they do close the 80th street store.