F, J, M, Z at Delancey St.-Essex St.
American Express, MasterCard, Visa
As one of the first trendy clothing stores to set up shop on the Lower East Side in 1992, well before gentrification set in, Terri Gillis’s women's boutique has long been a shopping destination for downtown fashion-hounds. Inside the graffiti-covered storefront, chandeliers and velvet toile wallpaper create a fun, girlish environment for browsing through threads by independent and lesser-known designers. Galvin has a curator's eye for the must-have pieces of the moment, particularly dresses. That means lace-trimmed, silk Lauren Moffat frocks; dark, urban-chic selections from Daryl K; and work-to-drinks-appropriate options from Rachel Mara. Women who prefer denim will discover a healthy pile, including punky and affordable Cheap Monday jeans. Delicately handcrafted jewelry is located near the cash register, while difficult-to-find Freitag bags made from recycled materials (like truck tarpaulin) line the floor and shelves. Shy shoppers should beware before trying anything on, though: The diaphanous dressing-room curtains are more for decoration than privacy.