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Ladies, walk in Brooklyn

Tuesday, June 2nd, 2009

This time it’s all about you ladies. Time Out Magazine has a proposal of a tour around Brooklyn which will transform even the most stubborn tomboys into ladies. And gentlemen staying at L-hostels, you are welcome to follow the ladies as well. As they say, female brain is an unsolved mystery but who knows maybe this trip can change it…
Start: Brooklyn Museum, 200 Eastern Pkway (2, 3 train to Brooklyn MUSEUM)
End: Barrette, 601 Vanderbilt Ave
Distance: 2.2 miles
Time: 4 hours

1 Start your ladycentric jaunt at the Brooklyn Museum (200 Eastern Pkwy at Washington Ave, Prospect Heights, Brooklyn; 718-638-5000, brooklynmuseum.org) and its Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art. Gape at Judy Chicago’s seminal The Dinner Party, a massive triangular table with place settings for feminist icons (such as Sappho and Mary Wollstonecraft), which anchors the collection. Modern riot grrrls might also enjoy the museum’s new exhibit, “Reflections on the Electric Mirror: New Feminist Video.”

2 Down the block, lush greenery is in full bloom at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden (1000 Washington Ave at Eastern Pkwy, Prospect Heights, Brooklyn; 718-623-7200, bbg.org). Monday 1 marks the beginning of Rose Month at BBG, whose Cranford Rose Garden houses more than 1,000 different species of the flower. The perennials will be at their peak for the next few weeks, but you can hold onto their scent by picking up a Kimono Rose set of bath salts and body wash ($34) at the gift shop.

3 Meander around the circle at Grand Army Plaza, then pop into the shabby-chic Joyce Bakeshop (646 Vanderbilt Ave between Park and Prospect Pls, Prospect Heights, Brooklyn; 718-623-7470). Co-owner Mo Chin runs the café with his pastry-chef wife, Joyce. “We’ve gotten to know a lot of our neighbors,” he says. Settle on one of the benches and fuel up with a latte ($3.25) and a lemon poppy-seed muffin ($2). (They use to serve David Lynch’s signature coffee).


4 If you’ve been scouring your favorite stores for the perfect skull-and-crossbones sweater to no avail, don’t throw up your hands in frustration—DIY with supplies from Stitch Therapy (176 Lincoln Pl between Seventh and Eighth Aves, Park Slope, Brooklyn; 718-398-2020). Newbie knitters can register for a Not Just Beginners workshop (two sessions for $100), which is popular with a young crowd. Alternatively, owner Maxcine DeGouttes calls the Knitting Circle class ($25) “a mixed bag” that draws men and women between the ages of 14 and 50.

5 Next, head west to Fifth Avenue for a lesson in keeping your lady parts in good health. Yogasana (90 Fifth Ave at Warren St, Park Slope, Brooklyn; 718-789-7255) offers a female-only class on Sundays (2–3:30pm). “It’s an empowering way for women to connect with their cycles,” says studio owner Kristen Davis. Expect to practice poses that help tame the side effects of menstruation and pregnancy.

6 We’re just going to say it: Most ladies love chocolate. Also, you know, it tastes really good. Get your fix at The Chocolate Room (86 Fifth Ave between St. Marks Pl and Warren St, Park Slope, Brooklyn; 718-783-2900), where a slice of gooey triple-layer chocolate cake ($6) will satisfy your sweet tooth. The shop is also one of the few eateries in the ’hood that carries Knipschildt chocolates. Sure beats popping Midol!

7 After you wind your way back to Prospect Heights, stop by Red Lipstick (560 Vanderbilt Ave between Bergen and Dean Sts, Prospect Heights, Brooklyn; 718-857-9534, redlipstick.net). “I’m familiar with three generations of women,” says proprietor Staceyjoy Elkin. “My customers, their babies, their moms and sometimes even their grandmothers shop here.” Her space is filled with a rotating selection of clothing, leather bags and bejeweled rings by indie designers, and few pieces cost more than $110.

8 End your day of femme appreciation by nestling in one of the red leather booths at Barrette (601 Vanderbilt Ave at Bergen St, Prospect Heights, Brooklyn; 718-230-5170). Choose from a menu split between “trashy” and “classy” items: The former offers cheap beer-and-shot combos, while the latter boasts a supergirly signature cocktail containing grapefruit juice and bourbon. Sip slowly. If you’re lucky, you might catch some hot ladies doing burlesque—the bar hosts impromptu performances on its teeny, glitter-festooned stage. We won’t blame you if you can’t resist the impulse to join in, Blair Waldorf–style.