Creative clients brush layers of vibrant, nontoxic paint onto a wide selection of pieces at Daydreams Ceramic Café. The wood- and earth-tone-accented shop, with a feel akin to a rustic winery, lines shelves with blank bowls, vases, mugs, and figurines. After a creative slathering, staff members glaze each piece and fire it in in the café's 2,000-degree kiln for up to two days, rendering it glossy and safe for food, microwaves, dishwashers, and teething pets. The café charges no studio fee for its visiting artists and allows them to return as many times as necessary to complete their masterworks—features which may have helped it to snag a 2011 Best Arts & Crafts award from CityVoter.
The Salvation Army Family Store collects and resells donated items ranging from vintage clothing to antique furniture. Patrons can search for wardrobes, tables, and couches to fill out their home, plates and silverware to stock their empty kitchen, and VCRs to feed their pet robot. All proceeds from the Family Stores support The Salvation Army's San Diego Adult Rehabilitation Center, a 12-step work therapy and faith-based residential and transitional rehabilitation program for men and women dealing with alcohol and substance abuse. The six-month to two-year program is offered to program participants at no cost.
Though the best way to contribute to the organization's mission, especially following natural disasters such as the recent wildfires, is with monetary donations, the Salvation Army accepts donations of used goods and clothing to sell in the network of Family Stores. All sales of these donated items support the funding of the organization's programming. To donate goods, call (800) 728-7825 or visit www.SanDiego.SATruck.org; for monetary donations, call (866) 455-4357, visit www.SanDiego.SalvationArmy.org, or send to The Salvation Army Divisional Headquarters, SD Fires, 2320 Fifth Avenue, San Diego, CA 92101.
Not content to just give people the tools to make their gardens beautiful, San Diego Hydroponics & Organics also teaches customers more effective ways to use them. At five California locations, the staff works to keep a dialogue open between customers, supply manufacturers, and master gardeners while helping visitors realize their gardening goals with a stock of more than 3,000 products for indoor and outdoor use. The shops brim with high-tech gardening gear ranging from plant sprayers to growth lights, and low-tech supplies such as organic compost teas. Much of the inventory helps make gardening easier by reducing it to a precise science, providing everything from pumps and irrigation to pH meters for maintaining an ideal growing environment.
Like fancy suits, sofa sets are sewn from the same cut of fabric. These matching sets provide a well-rounded look in living rooms, but near misses tend to clash due to their small differences. At 20 show rooms throughout the western US, Mor Furniture for Less arranges complete-room sets so customers can envision the collections in their own homes. Furniture for living rooms, dining rooms, and children's rooms can be found in each store along with individual lamps, tables, and entertainment centers. The stores also carry complete sets of beds, dressers, and nightstands so that homeowners don’t receive criticism from design bloggers in their dreams.
San Diego Self Storage oversees an ample and affordable arsenal of storage units and a network of neighborhood facilities. Storage rates and available unit sizes and types vary by location; however, you may be able to stow faulty bedknobs and broomsticks in a 10'x10' climate-controlled unit ($119–$189/month) or a 5'x5' lower-interior unit ($44-$79/month). Stuff storers can also hide away truffles from Lagotto Romagnolos in a 10'x20' exterior unit ($199–$319/month).
SurePro Windows & Doors boasts a vast collection of panes and portals to fit in homes of any style. Specializing in energy-efficient, vinyl windows and doors, the company specializes in replacements that can reduce household heating costs by up to 50%. Its staff has mastered speedy installation for projects ranging from bedroom windows to sliding doors, all using brand-name products including Monte Verde, BayView, Anlin, and Milgard. Clients can also have their windows personalized with sound reduction packages, tinting, and all-star shortstops to catch errant baseballs.