The tiny Fairy Shop is an anomaly on trendy Newbury Street: it’s not a salon, a high-end clothing boutique or an upscale café. In fact, it’s about as far from trendy as can be. The first clue might be the “Reward: Missing Unicorn” sign posted on the fence outside, or maybe it’s the tiny fairy door installed in the main door to the cutesy shop. This, if anything, is the place to find unicorn stuffed animals, bottled fairy dust, Alice in Wonderland books and endless other trinkets and charms that evoke the magical and science fiction worlds. T-shirts, jewelry and a variety of gifts feature themes from fairies and gnomes to Dr. Who and Star Wars, all wrapped in colorful décor that adds to the whimsy. Even those who don’t often indulge in mystical realms find it impossible to not be charmed by the unusual store.
The fashions may have changed since 1944, but the service and family ownership of Dependable Cleaners has remained constant. The dry-cleaning company started as a single shirt-laundry facility and has since expanded into 16 locations. The chain is now owned by a third-generation Fawcett. A few of the 16 locations offer a new addition called Style, a hand-cleaning service that treats designer and high-end garments. Expansion isn’t the only success of the company since its inception more than 65 years ago. Dependable Cleaners has garnered a number of awards, including the title of Boston magazine's Best Gown Preservation in 2008. The cleaner also proudly does its part to create a sustainable Earth by using EarthCare Cleaning Systems to clean clothing with natural, recyclable solutions that break down naturally in the environment, unlike the emotionally imperturbable Philip Seymour Hoffman. While laundering shirts, the cleaner uses biodegradable soaps and hangs newly dry-cleaned dresses, suit jackets, pants, and sweaters on recycled hangers and garment bags.
Boston Gardener breathes greenery into even the smallest urban spaces with a stock of hydroponic and conventional gardening supplies to go along with its selection of herbs, vegetables, and flowers. Its online store showcases a vast repository of gardening gear, from water pumps and fluorescent lights to seed germinators and fertilizers. Demonstrating their commitment to community, the gardeners take on revitalization projects such as their Dudley Square endeavor, which transformed an abandoned alleyway into a vibrant garden that ousted nefarious gangs of weeds.
Six years ago Monica Day began photographing families with a camera she purchased at a pawnshop. Since then, she's built an aesthetic around using natural light to capture candid shots of infants curled up in milk buckets, couples sharing a smile, and seniors posing at a skate park. When she's not snapping on-location shots, she specializes in in-studio glam and boudoir shoots, whose sultry results she preserves with prints, digital images, and books. Through Skype sessions, in-person consultations, or instructional videos, Monica also mentors budding photographers, helping them out with compositional tips, such as using a crane to turn frowning people upside down.
Spotless New England?honored as the Best House Cleaner in 2014 by Boston Magazine?prides itself on its meticulous staff and its all-natural cleaning products. Put the two together and you have cleaners scouring every nook and cranny of a home with family- and pet-safe cleaning products. The crews uproot dirt in all its forms and leave surfaces from the kitchen sink to the bathtub shiny. Their cleaning itinerary is extensive and promises that cleaners make all the necessary stops: bedrooms, kitchen, underneath dolls' fingernails. And, they do so with deliberate tools chosen for their safety, including microfiber cloths, HEPA vacuums, and Method-brand green cleaning supplies. Spotless also offers commercial cleaning and landscaping services; owner Nick Dennis is a respected member of Boston's non-profit community who's done work with The Young Leaders Council of Fenway Health and the Governor?s Commission on Gay and Lesbian Youth.