The Best New Online Shops Of 2014

Oh, the action our credit cards have seen in 2014 in the name of great online buys. We cheered the moment cult European labels & Other Stories and COS opened their digital doors to American shoppers, and counted down the minutes (okay, seconds) until Alexander Wang for H&M went live in November. But, even faster access to fast fashion wasn’t the only notable e-commerce news this year. We also welcomed a handful of exciting new online-only labels and shops onto the scene, which we’ve rounded up below, further proving that you don’t even have to get out of your pajamas — let alone let your bed — to score the softest leather jacket, perfect skinny jeans, or even prescription eyeglasses tailored just for you. If this level of craftsmanship, curation and customization is the new online shopping world order, we are so ready for 2015.
Proper Assembly
Our commutes just went hands-free — thanks to this sturdy and stylish line of backpacks. Launched in September by Becky Shim Paguia and Nate Poekert, the Brooklyn-based handbag label does good while making the rest of us look good. For every tote, duffel or knapsack sold, Proper Assembly will make a contribution to The Adventure Project, which supports social entrepreneurship in developing countries through its partnership with Living Goods.
Negative Underwear
With the goal of making uncomplicated underwear for complicated people (that’s you), Negative stripped down the concept of sexy lingerie to its basics to deliver on what you really want from your bras and panties — to feel awesome in your own skin. In less than a year, founders Marissa Vosper and Lauren Schwab achieved their goal in spades. Negative already has a list of devotees that includes Lucky EIC Eva Chen, Hannah Bronfman, and many an R29 editor obsessing over the label’s perfect underpinnings.
Super Street
Los Angeles’ street-smart style is now at your fingertips 24/7 thanks to Super Street. Mixing Rocha shoes with Huf snapbacks, Rodarte jewelry with Moschino ice cream-shaped iPhone cases, the West Coast e-commerce shop has the Cali-cool high-low mix on lock, thanks to the sartorial foresight of its founder Lucy Akin, who previously served as the head buyer for cult favorite boutique Satine.
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The Arrivals
You wear your coat every day for months, so logic would suggest you get one you really love. Take a look at The Arrivals, a new outerwear company founded by Kal Vepuri and architect Jeff Johnson, that makes the perfect leather jacket for a fraction of the price of other brands, no joke. Beyond the cost, we’re downright smitten with the label for its tightly edited selection of wearable silhouettes conceived in New York and crafted in the U.S.A.
AYR
An acronym for “All Year Round,” the Bonobos-backed shop which fully launched in February started out by seeking to offer the perfect pair of jeans, but has since wooed us with a line of closet essentials, from its wear-with-everything trench to super-sexy bias cut slip dress. It's pretty obvious why: the brand director is Maggie Winter, previously of J.Crew, and design director is Jacqueline Cameron, who formerly served at Madewell and Calvin Klein.
Tinker Tailor
Fancy yourself a designer, but not into the whole gotta-learn-to-draw-from-scratch element of the trade? Tinker Tailor has your back. By collaborating with top talent including Katie Ermilio, Roksanda Ilincic, and Giambattista Valli, the online shop founded by former Moda Operandi CEO Aslaug Magnusdottir lets you completely customize each designers' dresses, shoes, jewelry, and other goods to your heart's content, no FIT degree required.
Runway2Street
Offering a global marketplace for up-and-coming fashion talent, the Seattle-based start-up founded by Rathna Sharad, a former Microsoft product manager, now sells over 65 designers and ships to 25 countries — quite a feat for a site that just launched in February. Our favorite finds? Swimwear from Giejo, dresses by Thep, and necklaces by Forest of Chintz, a label which Kendall Jenner already loves, too.
Art Markit
No need to be a bigwig collector to get your hands on the best art in the world. Art Markit made scoring contemporary masterpieces as easy hitting Add To Cart. Launched by Doreen Remen, who is also a cofounder of Art Production Fund, the site culls editions, ephemera, and other special products crafted by established and emerging painters, sculptures, and performance artists alike into one easy e-shop. Never has it been so simple to get your hands on a Barbara Kruger, Christopher Wool, Jeff Koons, and John Baldessari all at the same time.
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DSTLD
Denim is the name of the game for new e-tailer DSTLD. The label, which is naturally based out of Los Angeles (the unofficial blue jeans capital) uses a unique bodymapping technology to ensure that its eco-friendly wares fit like a glove. The tech involved may be next-level, but the silhouettes, from skinny to cropped and back again, are familiar in the best way possible — just like your favorite jeans should be.
David Kind
Spending hours in an eyeglasses shop trying to decide on the perfect frames officially became a thing of the past this year thanks to e-tailer David Kind. Founded by Dave Barton, who previously worked at Oliver People, the specs site is a total no-brainer for anyone in need of a new pair of frames. (These are made responsibly in Japan and Italy.) Simply fill out a quick survey and upload a headshot. A stylist will pick out and send six options to you so you can try them on in the comfort (and privacy) of your own home.
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