Plato's Closet curates a collection of gently used name-brand apparel, incentivizing their customers to bring in their own quality used clothing for cash. Each week, the staff pores over piles of clothing and accessories in search of young and on-trend sweaters, dresses, shorts, and hazmat suits from popular brands. After picking out the best clothes and accessories, the staff reshelves items, priced at up to 70% off their retail value. The style-savvy staff aims to keep the shop’s stock in line with current trends and classic fashion statements, generally choosing only pieces that are 12–18 months old. Most of the available apparel comes in sizes 00–19/20 for girls and waist size 28–40 for guys.
Launched 5 years ago, Mattress Source has grown from a plucky family-run enterprise to a regional institution, soothing aching backs and brightening up dream times with masterfully engineered mattresses of all makes and types. Models from brands such as Simmons, Corsicana, Restonic, and Spring Air enrich the third of your life spent asleep and the eighth of your life spent practicing trust falls with thick, long-lasting constructions designed to support and relax the body. The inventory promotes deep sleep and good health through a range of mattress types, from the strong, nonsagging innerspring design to the pillowy comfort of sheets of memory foam and latex.
Once Upon A Child is a nationwide franchise with conceptual roots in the time-honored hand-me-down tradition. Taking into account how quickly babies outgrow buggies and toddlers master Roth IRAs, the stores help parents keep their kids happily equipped with age-appropriate apparati without breaking the piggy bank. In addition to stocking its shelves with brand-new goods and gear from popular kiddie brands such as Gymboree, Baby Gap, Fisher Price, Graco, Playskool, and Disney Store, Once Upon A Child buys and sells gently used items, not only making deep discounts possible, but also helping to replenish family funds. Pick up tenderly used items such as a Graco plug-in swing ($60), a Ralph Lauren button-down for boys ($8.50), and girls' Gap jeans ($8.50), or pick up a brand-new play-sized horse stable for $39.99.
Sunshine Daydream’s resourceful staff unveils a collection of hard-to-find vintage gifts that stand as tributes to days past with tie-dyed threads, hippie-era band merchandise, candles, and incents. The periwinkle-colored Grateful Dead Blue Bear Mandala tapestry ($26.99) allows buyers to embellish empty walls with Sanskrit-inspired designs or cover up holes kicked in by temperamental Rockettes. Transform stark rented flats into personal temples with wood-and-bamboo door beads ($22.99) that fall in a whimsical arch formation. The shop also pays homage to contemporary pop culture with T-shirts ($19.99-$26.99) declaring love for cult classics such as The Big Lebowski, Dazed and Confused, and The Hangover. Guests can occupy their palms with a variety of hand drums ($24.99) designed for drum-circle frequenters and stock traders that sell via Morse code.
Given The Bead Place's packed class calendar, it's a wonder the store doesn't grant degrees. If it could, customers who attend workshops regularly could have earned PhDs by now in subjects ranging from knitting and felting to silversmithing and metalwork. The scope of these skills is too broad for only a few people to handle teaching, so fortunately, the store employs more than a dozen instructors and doesn't count on a swamp creature with a giant, pulsing brain to do all the work. These staffers are experts in their respective crafts; Kara Jacob's beading work was highlighted in a Bead and Button magazine's "best of" volume, and Abbi Berta has been published as a designer in multiple magazines.
When students need materials for one of these workshops, the obvious spot to look is The Bead Place itself. The store carries semi-precious stones, vintage glass, Swarovski Crystal, and hundreds of types of yarn. It also supplies kits, patterns, and tools such as brass wire brushes and jeweler's saws.
In business more than 70 years, Concept Shoe Repair boasts a staff of expert cobblers that skillfully mends faulty footwear and revitalizes worn leather. More than 1,400 square feet of shop space facilitates pristine shoeshines, leather-purse and -luggage repair, and sizing normal-size shoes for off-duty clowns. The cobblers on staff vary from first- to third-generation shoe repairmen with decades of experience and a devotion to attending trade conferences that assist them in learning new techniques and challenging the world record for how many marshmallows can be stuffed into a shoe.