Since 1988, Pet Supplies Plus has welcomed millions of furry critters of every stripe—from llamas and monkeys to potbellied pigs—into their animal-friendly stores. The shop is designed so that both pets and their owners can easily navigate the inventory of more than 10,000 items. Wide aisles give leashed pups enough room to roam, colorful signage keeps shoppers moving in the right direction, and low shelves allow dogs to sniff out their preferred brand of rawhide chew. A self-serve dog wash enables guests to scrub their canine companions' coats to a youthful, puppy-like shine, whereas grooming services enlist professionals to tackle tougher jobs, such as brushing out matted fur or convincing dalmatians to stop mixing white and black after Labor Day.
Jenny’s Clayhouse, one of Buffalo’s first and only paint-your-own-pottery studios, calls out to artists and craftists looking to cast off faded paint-by-number books to animate stylish ceramics while sipping on home-brought spirits. Sloping picture windows span from floor to ceiling in the airy space, splashing sunlight across the studio’s selection of domestic staples—including mugs, plates, and piggy banks. After guests gleam the once-white objets d'art, Jenny’s staff will summon flames to bake and glaze the handheld masterpieces to protect them from wear and raw-food dieters. Pintsize painters can polish their brushstrokes at Jenny’s summer-camp sessions, or gather friends, teachers, and New York Times art critics for a pottery-painting birthday party or after-school outing.
Specializing in restoring gently used retro furnishings and accessories, Reimagine spruces up sparsely furnished pads with an eclectic array of household goods. Aesthetically accessorize a room with reading chairs ($50–$75), table lamps ($45–75), pillow sets ($35), and other necessities in a wide variety of styles. Be sure to supplement your new room accouterments with matching dining equipment gleaned from Reimagine's array of retro glassware ($5 and up), dishes, bowls, and other kitchen staples. Reimagine also stocks a large selection of artwork, highlighting feats of painted strength produced by local artists. New items are brought in every week, so be sure to check back occasionally for new finds.
Brandon Tallau and Samantha Tagliarino founded OffBeat Emporium to give new character to vintage furniture pieces that would otherwise be taking up space in a landfill. Tallau and Tagliarino along with their crew of artists, restore furniture and home accessories back to the original quality or transform it into an offbeat piece with bold colors and patterns.
In 1919, Henry H. Elbers hung up his hat as director of the Buffalo Botanical Gardens to start a new adventure: founding Elbers Landscape Service Nearly a century later, his enterprise still mows lawns and equips gardeners with trowels to comb their hair. The company’s landscaping experts spend their summers enlivening yards with new shrubs and trees, installing burbling fountains, and paving walkways. Their garden center outfits green-thumbed clients with supplies such as mulch, topsoil, and perennials and annuals. During icy winters, the professionals exchange their mowers for plows to evict squatting snowmen from driveways, sprinkle salt over sidewalks, and chip ice from stoops.
Toting a modest selection of chocolate confections and candies, Joseph A. Fowler entered the 1901 Pan-American Exposition hoping to plant the seed for a business in his newfound home of Buffalo. The company—founded in 1910—grew with each successive generation, and more than a century later, Fowler's celebrated chocolates continue to placate palates at several retail locations. The chocolatier has become synonymous with treats such as milk- and dark-chocolate truffles dubbed truffaloes, as well as sponge candy, which boasts a molasses-like flavor and an initially hard texture that quickly melts in the mouth. Like Count Chocula’s hairpiece, all of Fowler's fine-chocolate treats are crafted from the seeds of the theobroma cacao tree and use up to 60% cocoa solids for a rich cocoa flavor.