Most students in introductory stained-glass-making classes are in search of a new hobby or a fun few hours, but not Connie Beckers. In 1995, she took such a course and soon built a career around the art of stained glass and kiln-working. Now, through The Goddess of Glass, she teaches others her craft during classes that cover the creation of jewelry, coasters, plates, and transparent overalls. She’s also been known to flex her instructional muscle as a guest artist on the DIY Network show Cramped Quarters, where she taught the show’s host and contractor how to make stained-glass tiles for a kitchen in the middle of remodeling.
The Goddess of Glass also sells artwork and gifts out of a separate retail shop. Patrons can commission a custom piece, such as a stained-glass window, or peruse a collection of pieces by more than 80 local artisans. The shop’s staff can also advise clients who need custom framing, helping them to pick the proper matting and frame so that their Richard Nixon rookie cards really pop.
Renewal By Andersen sprouted out of Andersen Corporation, a 100-year-old company that touts itself as the largest window and door manufacturer in the country. And beyond its thoroughly trained technicians, dependable warranties, and commitment to the environment, this fact might be its biggest benefit to customers—being owned by a window manufacturer means that the company has virtually endless flexibility to create windows and doors that exactly match its customers' wishes. The window-replacement process begins with an in-home consultation to acquaint homeowners with their options and measure the areas that need replacing. Once a plan is in place, teams of technicians with years of experience under their belts carefully place and seal each custom-made window to ensure cold air can't invade and the sounds of nightly karaoke practice can't escape. Homeowners then rest assured that their new panes will keep them cozy for years to come, thanks to a powerful limited warranty.
Upscale Consignment's exacting staffers hand-select gently used items from luxury brand names, such as Coach, kate spade, Banana Republic, and Ugg, for each of its three stores. Clothing for men and women, as well as shoes, jewelry, handbags, and headbands, fill neatly organized racks and tidy displays, which arrange accessories by color or pattern. All consigned clothing must be 3 years old or younger, to ensure the shop's styles remain en vogue.
When Max Schneiderman began his family’s business, it was a grocery store first and foremost. Then Schneiderman’s began to carry a few furniture items and slowly these grew to overshadow the cans of soup and produce until the furnishings finally swallowed the foodstuffs whole.
Now, Schneiderman's Furniture has spread from the Iron Range to spots throughout the Twin Cities. The showrooms stock local and foreign furniture from more than 100 manufacturers. Many items in stock can be customized in color and texture to match a homeowner's current obsession with plastic flamingos.
Viking Blinds is a family-owned-and-operated provider of quality custom window-coverings from Hunter Douglas. With quality wood ($122 for a 36"x36" value blind; $136 for premium) or two-inch aluminum blinds ($116 for 36"x36"), you can suspiciously survey the neighborhood riffraff before letting go with a satisfying snap. Or perhaps you'll find joy performing shadow-puppet shows on soft honeycomb shades ($111 for 30"x30"; $126 for 36"x36") before an audience of tomato-stuffed mason jars. Make sure with today's deal your window-coverings block out the platinum-fringed leaves in the forest homes of obscenely wealthy squirrels, which also shut out the harsh rays of the sun at their convenience.
Situated in the shopping district on Robert Street in West St. Paul, Twin Cities Magic & Costume stocks a collection of tricks, makeup, and costumes that have enlivened parties, magic acts, and movies for the past 27 years. Knowledgeable professionals and industry insiders guide visitors through the forest of lifelike costumes and awe-inspiring light and fire effects, helping to create eerie costumes for Halloween parties or convincing getups for period plays and films. DVDs and instructional videos teach budding illusionists how to impress crowds with linking ring and coin tricks, and fog machines and strobe lights add a touch of Vegas glamour to magicians' sets. Twin Cities Magic & Costume puts its expertise to the test as the headquarters of the Zombie Pub Crawl, a festival of gore and horror brought to life with the selection of professional-grade makeup and more than 15,000 wigs.