The Big Jewcy: Izzy Grinspan, Editor, Racked.com
We at the Jewcy HQ like to keep tabs on people who have come into Jewcy, made their mark and graduated to continue doing so elsewhere – in most cases, in the offices … Read More
We at the Jewcy HQ like to keep tabs on people who have come into Jewcy, made their mark and graduated to continue doing so elsewhere – in most cases, in the offices of another online publication. Take Izzy Grinspan, once the Managing Editor of Jewcy.com, now a shopping maven and editor at Racked.com. Interested to know how Izzy, like many a Jewcy editor in the past, turned Jewish pop-culture writer to shopping editor, I caught up with her to talk her favorite sales, designers and the randomness of the number 38.
CG of Jewcy: So you used to be an editor at Jewcy.com!?How did you get from where we are to where you are now?
IG of Racked.com: Honestly, I answered an ad on MediaBistro! I was obsessed with Curbed (Racked’s parent network) since it launchedand when I saw that they were hiring, I jumped at it. At that point, I had beenat Jewcy for two and a half years and I thought it was time to move on.Luckily, it worked out!
CG: Racked.com is definitely the best place to look fordeals and sales in New York, L.A, pretty much everywhere – how do you managestaying in the office when you know about all those great sales? Is it tough?
IG: We actually are not in the office that much, we run around thecity all day – it’s a lot of legwork. We will go to the sales and then it’sabout going to a Starbucks to write it up or back to the office to cover it.The sales are amazing but after a while you step back and realize "Oh my god, Iam spending all my money!"
CG: What are your favorite sales of the year?
IG: (Without hesitation) Steven Alan. His stuff is justexactly my taste, it gets crazy and people are throwing elbows but he has somereally well-placed samples and he just knows how to do it. There’s also a wholebasement floor of other designers – that’s my number one definitely. Otherwiseit’s all about the quality of the merchandise, which can really change withevery sale.
CG: What designers are your favorites? Like, who makesyou jump up and down when you see their listing pitched to you?
IG: Rachel Comey… I have such Brooklyn taste! But, I loveher shoes. I always try to go to her sales. I also like Vena Cava a lot, theydo not have their own sales butthey show up in other sales a lot.
CG: How did you go about selecting the Racked 38? (Note:The Racked 38, for those who do not know, is the selection of 38 essentialshops the Racked staff believes should be in any urban shoppers dictionary.There is a different list for each city Racked covers and is pretty much deadon in its analysis of where city shoppers git er done.)
IG: It was fun! We had a council of all of the people whowrite and edit for Racked and we teamed up with this huge list and startednarrowing it down. We update it every few months, like I think were due for anupdate pretty soon. Either we add things or there are some things that fall offit. But once we get together we’ll have someone who lives on the Upper WestSide and then there’s me who likes to shop in Williamsburg and there will besomeone who knows all about menswear, so we can kind of cover the whole citythat way.
CG: Why 38? Seems arbitrary.
IG: Eater, Curbed’s food site, does 38 restaurants, but it’stotally random. While it may be random though, it does stick in your head. It’sa memorable number I think, just because it’s not round, like its not 40.
CG: What do you make of all these past Jewcy editorsheading into fashion journalism? You are in good company with Amy Odell of TheCut and Lillit Marcus of The Gloss and Save the Assistants being past editorsas well. Even I only write about fashion for the most part and ended up atJewcy! Any theories about this? Were you strictly writing fashion at Jewcy?
IG: At Jewcy I was doing a lot of editing and I wrote mostlyabout culture, which is always what I’m most interested in. But I also editedsome harder news stories – like I remember editing a piece about U.S. foreignpolicy in Saudi Arabia, I edited religion pieces, first person – I think Jewcygave me really good experiences because I learned how to be a generalist. Ithink the people who were there when I was there were hired just because theywere motivated people, not because they wrote about something specific. LikeAmy (referring to Amy Odell) went from being a powerhouse intern to full timeemployee in like three weeks and Lilit was similar. I remember she came in andright away was like, I’m in charge, I can do this. I think that we were allrandomly into fashion but Jewcy kind of gives you the feeling that if you wantto do something you can make it happen, it was great because you could writewhat you were interested in.
CG: Teach us your ways, navigating sales in NYC can bethe worst of the worst – any tips?
IG: Get there as early as possible! You will have so much tochoose from then and while you are waiting to get in, you can chat with peoplearound you and you make allies and friends on line. People are less inclined tograb things out of your hands when you’ve made friends with them before youwalk in the door.