Contributing to local commerce isn’t new territory for the Howard family. In 1925, Edwin Howard’s in-laws founded a small grocery in Doraville, which he took leadership of 30 years later. After gaining experience in that business, he decided to expand the family’s venture, and in 1972, he opened the first Howard’s True Value Hardware right next door. Now, after more than 35 years and currently under the ownership of Howard brothers John and Doug, the hardware store keeps shelves stocked with more than 100,000 hardware items, tools, and home-garden accouterments from the likes of Carhartt and Honda, as well as charcoal grills from Big Green Egg, wood pellet grills from Traeger, and a line of propane grills with tanks they can fill in-store. For sports enthusiasts, they're an authorized YETI Cooler and Tifosi Eyeglass Dealer.
Building materials, including adhesives and mason tools, lighten the burdens of home-improvement projects, and a constellation of hand tools relieves the hassle of hiring a beaver to chew its way through 2”x4”s. A full stock of interior paints helps customers brighten the hue of living quarters, while a sturdy pair of jeans from Carhartt helps them to withstand the wear-and-tear of maintenance projects or slow dances with rose bushes.
With 19 locations conveniently sprinkled throughout the Atlanta area, Solar Dimensions helps clients get beach-ready regardless of their proximity to the shore. Each location features a fleet of UV tanning beds of varying brightness, all waiting to sun-kiss skin in 10–20 minutes and comfort clients with a built-in cooling apparatus or complimentary snuggles from a nearby penguin. Custom airbrush-tanning treatments or automated VersaSpa and MyMyst sunless-tanning sessions forgo light exposure and instead tone complexions with tinted mists that materialize in four to eight hours and last for several days. Both tanning solutions quench skin with aloe vera before tinting it a natural shade ranging from light almond to lifeguard. The trained staff can also hone body shape with infrared body wraps and VacuStep treatments, and brighten smiles with teeth whitening, helping to boost confidence before bodies hit the pool.
Father-and-son team Robert and Fred Lee worked as homebuilders for years before going into business selling lights in 1965, so they knew how quickly something impressive could rise from a humble foundation. Sure enough, Lee Lighting, their small family company, grew to include a vast online retail shop and one of the largest lighting dealers in Texas. They've even purchased Savoy, a company that designs fixtures to bring cheer to dining rooms and make rooms full of ventriloquist dummies less terrifying.
Lee Lighting stocks shelves with a diverse selection of indoor lamps from brands including ELK Lighting, Quoizel, and Hudson Valley. Staffers certified by the American Lighting Association move beneath the dazzling crystal sprays and faux candles of chandeliers. They suggest outdoor lighting to transform backyards into regal terraces. They also stay abreast of lighting trends to help patrons select lights that will stay in style.
With locations spread throughout the South, Paper Affair gives patrons easy access to a vast selection of imprintables. A knowledgeable team guides clients through colorful corridors of stationery by brands such as Bella Ink, Inviting Company, and Crane & Co., selecting the best announcements to serve as a tasteful alternative to trumpet fanfare, or baby shower stationary that runs the gamut from silly to sweet. To complement the range of paper goods, staffers also stock shelves with useful gifts such as coasters and guest towels, as well as custom napkins that let guests know exactly whom to thank for stuffing the turkey with fluffernutters.
Dr. Donald Ruf is the core of Slender SpaMed, which specializes in cosmetic and weight-loss procedures. They employ the latest technology, including a Syneron laser hair-removal system and the Arasys Perfector, designed to trim waistlines without exercise or ice-cube diets.
Slender SpaMed's aestheticians perform traditional spa treatments, including hydrating facials, therapeutic massages, and slimming body wraps. Custom weight-loss programs supplement nutritional counseling and personal-training sessions with procedures such as vitamin injections.