By  on March 22, 2005

NEW YORK — It might have taken more than 35 years for Something Else to open a second store, but it was well worth the wait — especially for Brooklynites looking for a taste of Manhattan closer to their neighborhood.

Four decades ago, Doug Grater’s father bought a 6,000-square-foot retail space in Bensonhurst on 86th Street and opened Something Else. Two weeks ago, Grater opened the company’s second store on trendy Smith Street in Carroll Gardens.

Already known for its diverse mix of sometimes quirky and upscale restaurants, Smith Street had lacked an equally hip apparel scene, according to Grater, a lifelong Manhattan resident who moved to Carroll Gardens about a year ago.

“We would hang out on Smith and just see all these funky young people,” Grater said. After some prodding from his girlfriend, Grater decided that “we’re going to give them a reason to shop.”

Offering contemporary branded apparel for women and men from Adidas, Puma and Triple Five Soul to Kenneth Cole, Juicy Couture and Seven For All Mankind, the 1,000-square-foot Something Else, located at 144 Smith Street, opened on March 5. Its target demographic, according to Grater, is the “downtown Brooklyn chic customer.” As such, the Smith Street store focuses on carrying specific pieces from branded collections.

“We’re always looking for that special item — things you won’t see anywhere else,” said Grater, who took over running the company’s Bensonhurst location from his father in 1999. For example, customers can find niche apparel from London-based BoxFresh, Subscript, a subbrand from Triple Five Soul, or the surf-inspired brand Cabral.

Aside from a handful of boutiques such as Watts, Frida’s Closet and Flirt, each located on Smith Street, Something Else has relatively few competitors in the area. Even with a new Brooklyn Industries — catering to the same customer — located just three blocks away on Smith Street at Atlantic Avenue, Grater isn’t fazed.

“I’m from the school of the more stores the better. I think it will keep customers on the block and prevent them from going into Manhattan,” he said. “One store is not going to keep them on the block. By offering a variety of shops, [consumers] could spend an entire day on Smith Street. Pretty soon they’ve forgotten about Manhattan altogether. That’s pretty much what our goal is.”

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