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Harriet’s Alter Ego
Nearby Subway Stops
2, 3 at Bergen St.; B, Q at Seventh Ave.
American Express, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
This venue is closed.
The name of this Prospect Heights clothing boutique was inspired by abolitionist Harriet Tubman, but celebrates the playful and creative side—or “alter ego”—of hardworking women everywhere. Ngozi Odita was a social worker before opening the business in 2000 with business partner and designer Hekima Happa. About two-thirds of the colorful inventory of crocheted halter dresses, African print dresses, cotton-knit patchwork shirts, and batik belts and bags are designed and sewn on the premises and bear the in-house label. The Harriet’s brand uses African textiles and hand-dyed fabrics in contemporary ways (think Brit-rapper M.I.A. meets Erykah Badu), updates vintage pieces like men’s button-down shirts with screen prints, and produces cotton basics like tees and patchwork skirts for kids. The other third of the inventory comes from Brooklyn-based labels like Designs by Alicia P., which makes hand-painted tees, earrings, and intricate suede-and-bead necklaces. There’s a full range of makeup and skin-care by Sadé, a cosmetic line created specifically for women of color, and makeup consultations and brow-shaping services are provided in-store. With a gallery space featuring local artists and a quiet garden area, the shop serves as a respite from the busy thoroughfare of Flatbush Avenue.