By Matthew Collins, Architectural Editor-at-Large
In 1992, inspired by his difficulty finding a copy store nearby his East Village home that could enlarge his wedding photo and frame it to his liking, Bidyut Sarker opened the 7th Street Copy Center at 34 East 7th Street between 2nd and 3rd Avenue. In 1994 his wife, Mousumi (“Mou”), emigrated to the U.S. to be with him, and in that time she often helped out at the storefront as they started their family.
Business in the ’90s was good, so in 1995 Bidyut opened a second location at 204 East 11th Street at 3rd Avenue. As a result, eventually Mou began to run the 7th Street location on her own, even after her second son was born in 1997.
In 2013, the 11th Street building was sold by the owner and the Sarker’s almost lost the whole business. Bidyut desired to give it up, having suffered a stroke in 2009, but Mousumi persuaded him to hold onto it by insisting that she would run it herself, if he could just help her relocate to a new storefront that could accommodate the consolidation of equipment.
In 2014 they moved across the street into 13 East 7th Street – two storefronts west of McSorley’s Ale House just off Cooper Square – and renamed the store NY Copy, Print and Ship Center.
“I love the store which gives me the opportunity to grow. I take care of it the same as I [would] care for my baby.”
Since 1997, Mou has single handedly run the shop on 7th. It is a retail print and copy shop in the old style – neither a B2B industrial-grade print shop, nor a stationary store outfitted with a customer-operated machine or two, and definitely not an impersonal Staples or FedEx/Kinkos.
NY Copy is the real deal – a true neighborhood spot.
Today, NY Copy, Print and Ship Center remains the last of its kind still operating in downtown Manhattan, according to this author’s survey.
When Your Neighborhood Office at 332 Bleeker Street near Christopher Street, which had been the West Village’s last remaining indie retail copy shop and mailbox service, closed in March of 2018 after 24 years of service, many local residents were left hanging, without a place to go for their retail printing needs and associated services.
NY Copy, Print and Ship may offer relief.
[Full disclosure: I’ve been a loyal customer at NY Copy for years.]
So the next time you happen to cross Broadway, stop in to say hi to Mou behind the counter, and – if you’ve got a big job for her to process – pass the time with a couple mid-day mugs and a nibble from McSorley’s while you wait, with the sure knowledge that you’ll be helping to keep the spirit of analogue culture alive.
NY Copy, Print & Ship Center is located at 13 East 7th Street NY, NY 10003
www.nycc.com for a full list of services
Tel: (212) 673-5628
Fax: (212) 473-8234 firstname.lastname@example.org
Mon – Fri: 8:30 am to 6:00 pm Sat: 10:00 am to 6:00 pm