Chuck Guarino and THECAST at 71 Orchard Street

Posted on: April 1st, 2010 at 6:18 am by

THECAST recently relocated from its self-proclaimed “dungeon space” at 119 Ludlow to an above-ground sliver of real estate at 71 Orchard Street. It sits in a precarious position, wedged between two mainstays – Howard Sportswear and A.W. Kaufman.  The move is part of a new phase in the battle for the Lower East Side; a battle for the heart and soul of the neighborhood.

This image has been archived or removed.

The tipping point has long been reached and this new skirmish is no longer between ethnic groups jockeying for political power. Instead, the fight is over style and image, and Tammany Hall has no say. If Chuck Guarino has anything to say about all this, you can bet that the young men and women trolling the bars, restaurants, art galleries, and boutiques will be adorned in a style that evokes the gritty era of power chords, black leather, and chains.  Think Iggy Pop, not Vampire Weekend.

This image has been archived or removed.

[Chuck Guarino & Elisa Maldonado]

The neo prepsters thought they had secured stylistic hegemony around these parts, but they need to watch their backs now that Guarino’s THECAST shop has emerged from under Ludlow Street to it’s new digs at 71 Orchard Street.   THECAST is a narrow railroad tenement selling old school, authentic punk rock and metal fashion; not the cartoon stereotype, but the timeless, simple look that’s been a staple of American style since the idea of playing loud, snotty music in your garage first emerged out of the post-war suburbs and found its way to the once inexpensive precincts of the Lower East Side. These vintage boots, reasonably-priced handmade tees, and “Made in New York City” jeans and leather jackets are more Max’s Kansas City than Stanton Social.

This image has been archived or removed.

Chuck has lived in the neighborhood since 2001 and represents the last wave of artists and designers who arrived here before the tsunami of upscale dweeby decadence rolled over everything in sight. Instead of drowning in a sea of rarefied dandies posing in their yacht wear, Guarino has established an oasis of true grit to serve notice that the war is not over and the ghosts of the Blank Generation live on. Forget about the need to make a statement. Just check out THECAST to peruse the out of print records, books and bring your girlfriend to meet Elisa who will show you the sexy “Aloha From Hell” women’s line.

THECAST, 71 Orchard Street, (212) 228-2020, Open M-F 12 – 8 pm

[Written by Steven Gibaldi]

Recent Stories

Clayton’s Corner: Martha Cooper to Middle Collegiate

Clayton Patterson sent his latest dispatch of imagery from his recent neighborhood walkabouts. The latest Clayton’s Corner is here. Legendary graffiti photographer, Martha Cooper, standing beside a payphone in Astor Place that features one of her iconic images. NY PopsUp spent last weekend at the International Center of Photography on Essex Street. It drew crowds […]

Upside Pizza Slinging Slices in Little Italy

Upside Pizza is now serving at the former home of Pomodoro in Little Italy. It opened on Spring Street this past Wednesday. Founder Noam Grossman and partners Eli and Oren Halali (behind 2 Brothers and Taqueria Diana) had been renovating 51 Spring Street since the fall. The pizza parlor opted for a gut renovation, resulting […]

Jing Fong Workers Protest Dining Room Closure and Rumored Shutdown

Despite the brisk weather, several dozen union members and Jing Fong employees rallied Tuesday morning in front of the East West Bank on Centre Street to save save the iconic dim sum restaurant. Advocates called on the Chu family, which owns the Elizabeth Street property (and the aforementioned bank), to stop killing Chinatown and to keep […]

Forever Stalled Delancey Street Condo Tower is Finally Rising

Stop the press – there is actual real world progress to report on a long-stalled development at the east end of Delancey Street. The 12-story “boutique condo” at the corner of Delancey and Pitt Streets has seen some serious progress in recent months, after spending most of its life cycle as a stalled steel skeleton. […]

Asian Man Pummeled Outside East Broadway Station in Latest Biased Attack

An Asian man was assaulted in an unprovoked attack outside the East Broadway subway station Tuesday night, adding to a recent spate of biased assaults against Asians across the city. Cops said the 56-year-old victim was entering the F train station – the Rutgers Street entrance by Woo’s Wonton King – at about 8:50pm when […]