Classic Home Decor peppers its 4,500-square-foot showroom with like-new upscale furnishings, arranged into classic and modern tableaux that tickle the brain's design cortex. Only gently used pieces get past Classic Home Decor's garden-gnome bouncer and make it into the inventory—ensuring quality and couches free of incompatible rear-end indentations. A mirror and shelf ($39.99) adds a bohemian flourish to any abode when paired with a Tiffany-style lamp ($99.99), and a pair of rattan trunks ($31.99) look as though they were designed to hold collections of crumbling treasure maps and eldritch grimoires. The leather barrel end table ($99.99) can be used to store either remote controls or ferment mead, and a Greek male bust ($69.99) imbues dinner parties with just the right dose of stylish nudity. Classic Home Decor’s friendly atmosphere makes newcomers feel right at home, although they are still urged not to clutter the showroom with their action figures.
The Woodcraft name stretches from coast to coast with locations peppered throughout the United States, ensuring that Americans are well equipped with the brand-name tools and woodworking supplies needed to pursue handyman endeavors. At Woodcraft of Birmingham, a collection of hand tools waits patiently to hammer down nails and saw brave magician assistants in half, and a variety of power tools—including drills, sanders, and grinders—adds electric oomph to construction projects. In addition to performing in-store demonstrations of new products, the shop’s wise whittlers call upon more than 80 years of collective knowledge to lead various crafts classes, in which participants learn how to carve sophisticated pens, assemble wooden step stools, and use table saws.
An affordable and monumental selection of sofas, beds, desks, and sarcophagi mingle good-naturedly in Ashley Furniture’s wondrous warehouse. Sydney accent chairs command shoppers’ attention with woody legwork, while minimalistic Cubit ottoman sets do captivating belly dances to bedazzle bored sultans. Matrix accent chairs, sofas such as the Victory chocolate sectional ($699), and beds including the Keytown panel bed ($499 queen) anticipate increasing the comfort of various human inactivities.
For more than three decades, Rocky Ridge Hardware has kept handy Birmingham homeowners well stocked in topnotch tools, gardening supplies, collegiate memorabilia, and antiques. Fanatical fixer-uppers can get their fix by perusing aisles adorned with brand-name wares organized in an array of do-it-yourself categories including paint, electrical, lawn care, plumbing, and robot defense. Protect newly painted walls with odorless Kilz spray primer ($4.99), keep hardwood floors fresh with a Bona floor-care system ($29.99), or measure that giant reptilian bone you found in the backyard with a brand new 25-foot measuring tape ($7.89).
Continental is more than an ordinary blossom abode; it also stocks a full selection of house and tropical plants, all waiting to be adopted by loving humans who won't be embarrassed when photosynthesis happens in front of houseguests. The selection includes bright magenta azaleas, fluffy hydrangea globes, delicate orchids, and many leafy wonders. Surprise a special somebody with simple yellow daisies and wispy willow in a small Gerber vase ($35). Say happy birthday to a sweet-toothed coworker with a candy bouquet ($35), or send a healthy basket of fresh fruit ($45) to the aging superhero down the street. Beyond that, gift baskets can be customized to include just about anything, including chocolates, cheeses, themed gifts, or bottled genies with a few remaining wish-grants.