Olan Mills Inc. provides families with high-quality portraits, continuing a mission that was established more than 75 years ago by founder Olan Mills Sr. Skilled in the art of capturing infants, children, families, and bunny-ears-giving ghost orbs on film, Olan Mills’s experienced smile snappers will take a series of poses amid a variety of backgrounds and lighting options. The studio is equipped with a selection of props—including numbers for birthdays, toys, and boxes—and patrons may bring their own photo-enlivening items from home. The resulting photos find their way to prints in natural color, black and white, or sepia tones; they can also be immortalized in the studio's signature Old Masters style, a canvas brushed with highlights to re-create the look of an oil painting. Like the gentlemanly mariners of ages past with their full schedule of sea battles, the photographers welcome appointments, but do not require them.
In 1965, Popular Mechanics ran a small classified ad for Brookstone, a new catalog company that packed its pages with functional products and detail-oriented descriptions. Brookstone quickly expanded to meet the high demand for its collection of “hard-to-find tools,” and opened the door to its first retail location in 1973. Today, Brookstone’s more than 300 nationwide retail locations allow customers to test-drive its ever-growing lineup of interesting products, which range from Bluetooth-enabled massage chairs to power adapters designed for international travelers and their electronic passports. Staying true to its roots as a catalog company, Brookstone houses an even larger selection of products, each waiting patiently to be shipped, on its website.
Since offering its first batch of all edible, no-filler bird feed named Old Bob White back in 1975, Old Bob's has transformed into an eclectic shop for all things outdoors, as well as home decor and furnishings. The wide-ranging inventory includes self-manufactured cottages and storage buildings that resemble old-time cabins. Wild bird supplies, which include woodpecker feeders, entice avian near and far to swoop into customers' yards for a quick snack, filling outdoor spaces with lively chirps and dissuading the giant worm next door from digging into your yard. Not just for birds, the shop's outdoor items also include bat houses, basketball goals, and a large collection of in-stock and special order wallpapers.
A family-run business since 1974, Godby Home Furnishings stocks its 75,000-square-foot Westfield warehouse with an attractive and functional selection of quality room fillers from more than 40 manufacturers. A new lamp ($49+) illuminates even the darkest of kitchen corn mazes, while an unfurled area rug ($99+) adds texture to humdrum wood flooring as it tactfully conceals the living room sinkhole. Lounge comfortably in a Lane recliner, available in both leather and fabric with myriad color choices ($599+ for two), or snore soundly atop locally manufactured Miralux mattresses, choosing between firm, plush, and pillow-tops ($399+ for a queen). Godby additionally supplies its customers with a multitude of furnishing services, including design advice from knowledgeable sales associates, same day or next day pickup, and mechanical couch potato harvesters.