Since 1910, Hallmark has stocked its shelves with a wide variety of greeting cards, gifts, and thoughtful keepsakes. Patrons can write a formal request for better candy from neighbors with Halloween greeting cards ($0.99+ each) or record a personalized greeting card to document a baby's first words in English or made-up baby language. Keepsake ornaments ($9.95+) inspired by the memorable Peanuts comic strip feature Snoopy, Lucy, and Charlie Brown decked out in Halloween costumes, and a variety of scrapbook kits and photo albums help to preserve memories without having to pickle the brain. A large selection of wrapping paper, ribbons, and bags encloses gifts in layers of festivity.
Family-owned and operated since 1995, White Orchard Home Furnishings (formerly Quaker Country Home) offers a wide variety of high-quality traditional and contemporary furniture and accessories with which to dapple a home. The two-story showroom in historic Grange Hall houses shaker, mission, traditional, and modern styles of abode furnishings, much of which is built in the U.S. and sourced from more than 37 manufacturers. Spruce up a natural habitat or make an unnatural habitat of sterile rocks and Theremin strains more congenial with framed artwork ($48+), stylish lamps ($125+), or solid wood furniture crafted from pine, maple, or cherry wood ($125+). Armchairs ($397+) and sofas ($997+) offer a comfy place for weary soul sacks to relax and recline after an exhausting day protecting organs from skeletal onslaughts.
"Never, never, never give up," is the driving mantra for David Oreck, who flew combat missions with the US Army Air Forces in World War II and returned home to build a business empire from scratch. He set out to design a machine to lighten hotel employees' load, making a lightweight vacuum cleaner as opposed to the traditional bulky, burdensome commercial cleaners. Naturally, the domestic market began clamoring for his high-powered yet easy-to-handle devices, and soon Oreck vacuums could be found in homes throughout the country.
Today, the company continues its tradition of innovation, simplifying household tasks with Steam-Glide mops for hard floors, HEPA-filter upright vacuums, and stain-killing cleaning products. Oreck's commitment to clean sends it headlong into the future, with high-tech air filters that react to their environment with automatic sensory controls, filtering odors, allergens, and curse words.
For years, Rebecca Ruger collected the smooth pieces of glass that washed up on Lake Erie?s beaches. It started out as a pastime, but one day, she had a creative impulse and used some of the pieces to make a piece of artwork as a gift for her boyfriend. After that, she continued to create glass-based artwork, selling the pieces at craft shows alongside her jewelry-maker daughter. The work began to grow in popularity, and today, Ruger owns her own art boutique?Beach Bum Glass Cottage.
According to metroWNY, Ruger and her boyfriend now spend more than 20 hours each week scouring the Hamburg beaches for the glass, driftwood, and fossils that she uses to make the artwork and jewelry in her shop. Ruger also supports other local artisans by stocking handmade products that range from dog treats to soy candles.
Toting a modest selection of chocolate confections and candies, Joseph A. Fowler entered the 1901 Pan-American Exposition hoping to plant the seed for a business in his newfound home of Buffalo. The company?founded in 1910?grew with each successive generation, and more than a century later, Fowler's celebrated chocolates continue to placate palates at several retail locations. The chocolatier has become synonymous with treats such as milk- and dark-chocolate truffles dubbed truffaloes, as well as sponge candy, which boasts a molasses-like flavor and an initially hard texture that quickly melts in the mouth. Like Count Chocula?s hairpiece, all of Fowler's fine-chocolate treats are crafted from the seeds of the theobroma cacao tree and use up to 60% cocoa solids for a rich cocoa flavor.
Family patriarch Nordy Rockler opened the doors of his first store in 1954 to supply his fellow craftsmen with knowledge, friendly advice, and a large selection of tools for at-home woodworking projects. Now, the chain of retail outlets brims with more than 20,000 tools and specialized woodworking equipment. Next to a steely rainbow of hinges, casters, and screws, a supply of lumber and exotic hardwoods provides planks for building tree houses or just leaving around as a warning to uncooperative trees. The tenor buzz of power tools operated by newly knowledgeable guests drifts from educational sessions on operating equipment and woodworking.