Over the course of two decades, the glint of gemstones, polished beads, glass pearls, and sterling-silver chains on the shelves at Desert Gems have inspired countless crafters to create their own personalized jewelry. The shop's veteran staff leads workshops for novice and advanced beaders that cover foundational beading techniques, as well as leather- and wire-wrapping and advanced bead stitching. Between its stock of glass pearls and Turkish beads, Desert Gems carves out a third of the space in its store for rocks, minerals, carvings, and alien-crafted obelisks gathered from around the world.
With spring spreading like a bag of spilled gravy, now is the ideal time to throw open the windows and get home and lawncare projects underway. Reclaim the yard from winter's occupation with Adams Adirondack stacking chairs ($14.99 each) and an Ace Flexogen 50-foot garden hose ($19.99). Illuminate outdoor living spaces with a 6-pack of Solar Walk Lights ($12.99) or the welcoming blaze inside a Living Accents portable firepit ($29.99). Ace also covers indoor bases with products and services for tree-free areas of the home. If you need to match paint to a favorite coverlet or choose a hue that complements a pleather recliner, each store offers a paint-matching service free of charge.
Furniture Row Shopping Centers host four home-apparel stores in a single convenient location. The quartet of specialty stores—Sofa Mart, Oak Express, Bedroom Expressions, and Denver Mattress Co.—is designed to accommodate every room in the house. Espresso leaning shelves ($88) are fully caffeinated yet provide remarkably steady support for books, picture frames, and knickknacks. Soothe summer nights with a Perfect Harmony Isocool mattress pad ($69–$109) atop a new mattress set ($219+); top it off with an attractive brocade duvet set ($44–$68). A new lamp set ($148+) atop an end table ($118+) is a great way to encourage sofas to use more light when they read.
Famous Footwear offers an array of fashionable hoof-hammocks, humanely branded with well-known names like PUMA, Skechers, and Naturalizer, and ready to anchor the wanderings of children, juniors, and adults. Outrun gravity’s painful punches with a pair of Nike Dual Air Fusion running shoes (women’s and men’s models), or cool off your overly hot dogs with a classic duo of Converse Chuck Taylors. Famous Footwear’s extensive selection of women’s dress shoes perform fancier footwork, adorning the fashionably frugal with such pedal accouterments as Madden Girl Fawwns, which have a trendy taupe tone that camouflages stealthy feet in an underbrush of leg. The shop features plenty of girls’ and boys’ options as well, including Crocband clogs made with antimicrobial materials to repel the germs that scour youngsters’ feet for fallen cookie crumbs.
In true family style, brothers Nick and Kirby Kuklenski own and operate two “sister” Ace Hardware stores in Colorado Springs, keeping local homes beautiful with name-brand products and services. Lawns grow thick and colorful with Scotts fertilizers, plants, and seeds from the shops’ lawn departments, whereas computerized color matching in the paint aisles keeps outsides as vibrantly hued as flowers in a garden or a house fly strolling across an artist’s palette. Collections of DeWalt and Craftsman hand and power tools help homeowners assemble Weber grills, with staffers standing at the ready to build any piece bought at the store. Even autos can get in on Ace Hardware’s helpful services: keys are cut onsite, with Sidewinder keys including built-in chips that interact with car computers to ensure proper starts without feeding vehicles buckets of floppy disks.