In September 2009, New York Family Brooklyn’s “Behind the Storefront” interviewed Cookie’s the Kid’s Department Store’s owner Cookie Falack about fashion and giving back to the community.
With his love for kids and his eye for great retail concepts, it’s no wonder why Cookie Falack has created one of the largest children’s shopping emporiums in the country. Cookie’s (known as “The Department Store For Kids”) gives parents the opportunity to dress their children from head to toe with a range of styles offered at great values. The Fulton Street store that I visited (one of seven locations throughout the city) is filled with everything a parent would need, from essentials for starting a nursery to the latest fashions for dressing kids through their tween and teen years. I was fortunate enough to have the chance to sit down with the retail mogul and speak with him about his love for the business and his visions for the future.
What was your concept when opening your first store?
I wanted to focus on offering the best value in children’s clothing for any kind of customer.
I should say my customers are varied with different budgets and tastes. It’s important for me to offer various price points and styles while still offering the best value for these items. We opened our first store in Queens and have since expanded into Brooklyn and the Bronx.
What would you consider some of your strongest selling departments?
Our sportswear department offers an enormous selection of every brand imaginable. You will find the latest trend looks at some of the best prices anywhere with designers like Baby Phat, Calvin Klein, Roca Wear and Ed Hardy, to name just a few. No matter what your style is, you can always find something here to suit just what you were looking for. Also, our formal wear is popular. We offer dresses for communions, special occasions and birthdays. There are so many different styles to choose from. Best of all is that you can find all the accessories—including shoes—that you will need to match and complete the look. Our boys department offers the largest selection of suits under one roof in the country. We offer all sizes and styles at the best value price point.
Our school uniform department is tremendous. Most people know us for this category and yet it’s only for a short time period throughout the year. I saw a long time ago that many schools were switching to uniforms so I spoke to one of our manufacturers to make these simple school uniforms, and now we are the “go to” store in this category.
Are you active in any of the communities that your stores are located in?
It’s very important to me to be able to offer something to children who are less fortunate than most. We work with many of the schools in the surrounding areas to offer school uniforms to those who cannot afford them. Through many of the nearby hospitals we try to encourage a young new mother who may not otherwise choose to go back for a follow-up checkup by offering a free layette gift basket if she does return with the baby.
Anything new in the horizon?
We have started up our website, where you can purchase many of our items. It’s just another way to reach our customers and keep them involved with what is going on in the store. There are contests and coupons that you can sign up and register for. We hope to keep expanding the site to be able to reach more and more of our customers across the country.