Inside the Williamsburg Home of Milly & Earl’s Bernadette Libonate


  • Helena Wolfenson

Williamsburg boutique Milly & Earl has just celebrated its one year anniversary, and it’s already become a mainstay in a neighborhood that has no shortage of perfectly curated shops. Owner Bernadette Libonate has lived in East Williamsburg with her dog Millie for two years now, but doesn’t know what took her so long to come to this side of the East River. Some of her favorite local spots are Nighthawk Cinema, Ba’sik Bar, Gutter, 1 or 8, Sel de Mer, and Tuffet Bar, which pretty much align with everything that we like too. Although, if we had a dog as great as Millie, we might just be content to laze around in our apartment all day, and never, ever leave. But that’s just us.

What do you do?

I’m the lucky owner of the boutique Milly & Earl in Williamsburg.

How long have you lived in Brooklyn?

Only 2 years, but I can’t believe I wasn’t here before then. I feel like I’ve always lived here.

What brought you to Brooklyn?

Honestly, I’m not sure how that happened. So glad it did though.

What’s your favorite thing about your neighborhood?

I am literally in love with my neighborhood. Everyone’s so chatty and nosy. Having a real sense of community in a city as big as New York was unexpected for me. THe community feels a sense of ownership over their neighborhood and it’s palpable.

What’s your favorite thing about your apartment?

Its warmth. My apartment is like a big sweatshirt—it’s so cozy.

What’s your least favorite thing?

My view—I don’t have one.

What three things would you save in a fire?

My dog, Millie—although I think she would be out the door well before me. The pictures on my nightstand, and, as sad as this is, I would grab as many clothes from my closet that were within my wingspan.

Have you ever had that dream where you discover that your home has an extra room, full of all sorts of fantastical things? If this was a dream, what would you like to find in this extra room?

No, but I want that dream! An extra room in a NYC apartment… all I can think is more storage. I’m fairly certain that my current state of storage (that lives above my closet) will lad to injury on the day it decides to give out on me.

If you could move your home to anywhere else in the world, where would you go?

I’m right where I want to be, but living on the Italian Riviera is a super close second to East Williamsburg.

Milly & Earl, 351 Graham Avenue, Williamsburg

Follow Kristin Iversen on twitter @kmiversen


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