alFriends NYC was started in 2012 by Mary Meyer and Emma Kadar-Penner. 

GL: Who is Friends NYC

FNYC: Friends NYC is a 2200-square-foot indie department store / retail goodness. We have something for everyone, and carry women’s and men’s, contemporary and vintage clothing, accessories, and home goods. We love supporting our talented friends, and are chock full of beautiful products from local Brooklyn artists and world-wide designers.

GL: What’s your favorite part of what you do?

FNYC: We love creating what we call the World of Friends – we (and our customers) see our store as a magical land where they can all escape day-to-day difficulties and have fun and get cute! We also love our loyal customers and staff.

Our business has integrated us into the community and we are grateful for the relationships developed. When the work day is done, the staff loves shopping in our own store!

GL: What were some challenges you faced along the way?

FNYC: When we initially started our business, we were flying by the seat of our pants. Now we are running a growing department store with a full staff, both on the business side and on the floor. It has been a rewarding challenge learning and growing into our positions as business owners.

“We wanted to take our business to the next level, and that meant bringing gouchev law on as our general legal counsel”

GL: What made you seek out Gouchev Law?

FN: As our brand grows, we’ve been needing to deal with various contracts, intellectual property and employment law stuff. That finally pushed us to reach out to Gouchev Law. We wanted to take our business to the next level, and that meant hiring a general legal counsel for the company. Committing fully to investing in ongoing legal counsel our business was a scary decision, but was totally worth it!

GL: Can you share a little about what type of work Gouchev Law does for you?

FN: Brand protection is so important for us as we’ve worked hard to create a very special mark in the world with our brand. Gouchev Law has been so helpful in the trademark registration and protection. The firm does our employment contracts and general employment counsel, and our disputes and if needed litigation.  Working with the firm has always been very easy and seamless!

GL: How would you define what success means for yourself and your team?

FN: Success for us is most importantly about personal happiness for management and our employees. If we are not happy and fulfilled, the business suffers. Continued growth also defines our success – whether it be in dollars, new customers, new press coverage, or just new products.

GL: We know exciting things are in store for you. Can you share a sneak peek of plans for the next couple of years?

FN: We are very proud of our online store ( and hope to see continued success with it! We hope to grow the online side of our business and also grow brand awareness outside of Brooklyn, as we  open another retail store.


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