The Backpacker––a locally owned shop that was named Best Outdoors/Camping Gear Store by the Free Times––outfits people with the rugged apparel and equipment they need to explore the great outdoors. It stocks top-notch labels such as The North Face, Patagonia, and Columbia Sportswear. Women can keep warm in a lightweight Patagonia ReTool Snap-T pullover ($119), which has pockets for warming hands and stowing marbles, and men can heat their torsos with a North Face Atlas Triclimate jacket ($229), which is designed to protect its wearer in all three of Earth’s climates: cold, tropical, and glum. When jumping in puddles, don a pair of the Merrell Chameleon 3 Ventilator GTX ($130), which sports waterproof leather and fabric and has a toe bumper and air cushion for midsole support. An ample selection of hats and gloves is always available, as are tents and backpacks, but if you need help conceptualizing the gear necessary for a special expedition, such as swimming in a pit of caramel, the friendly staff is more than willing to answer questions and give advice.
The experienced leather doctors at Dickson's Old Cobbler Shoe Repair apply their nimble hands to all manner of footwear. Cobblers can repair the full soles and heels on a pair of men or women's shoes, repair the corkbed and soles on Birkenstocks, or entirely recraft tattered cowboy boots. Technicians keep leathers looking luxurious with a shine job on boots, purses, and jackets, or heighten shoes up to 1.25 inches so customers can finally reach the height required to vote.
Multihued assortments of drawing paper, markers, and Van Gogh acrylic paints fill the well-organized shelves of S & S Art Supply. Accommodating staff members will order out-of-stock items for customers and cater to artists and hobbyists of all predilections, including students, art teachers, and unemployed muses. Create a magnum opus on a 16"x20" Winsor & Newton canvas ($15.49), or fill a 9"x12" Strathmore visual journal ($14.99) with inspired sketches. Tubes of Royal Talens acrylics ($5.69+) prime palettes in more than 80 colors, and an 11-ounce can of Montana Gold spray color ($10.50) imbues any surface with a UV-free tan.
Drawing on 32 years of bespoke experience, the duo of talented tailors at Éclat Tailoring & Design by Robert Ríson morphs garments with meticulous alterations and designs custom-made ensembles for men, women, and children. The clothing experts construct elegant apparel from sundry pattern catalogs by Vogue, New Look, and Style, with fine materials such as fur and mink and fabrics such as wrought silk, organza, tulle, tweed, and bubble wrap. The accommodating clothiers also work with customers to fashion garments according to client specifications. In an initial consultation, designers meet with customers to gain a thorough understanding of desired styles and designs, take measurements, and provide counsel on any recent public displays of pants splitting. Custom garments are completed and ready to wear within four weeks.
With art degrees from the University of South Carolina, Tom Lockart and Mark Woodham teamed up to found One Eared Cow Glass, a glass-working studio and gallery. The duo started out in a rent-free Bishopville barn, according to Columbia Living, and named their enterprise after a carved wooden cow’s head that was nailed to the door. Much like Mike Tyson’s teddy bear, the cow had only one ear.
Today, at their studio location in downtown Columbia, Lockart and Woodham host live demos throughout the week. During these demos, the pair shape molten glass—which can heat up to 2,300 degrees Fahrenheit—into the translucent artwork that lines their gallery’s shelves. Their work ranges from vases to birdfeeders, though they specialize in indoor and outdoor light fixtures.