Unique Photo?s story wouldn?t be out of place in a Horatio Alger essay: entrepreneurs Bernard and Harriet Sweetwood opened a small storefront photography supply store in Brooklyn, which, through their continued hard work, grew to become one of the largest privately owned photographic-supply distributors in the world. Now dubbed a photographic superstore, Unique Photo stocks more than 20,000 products from popular brands such as Canon, Panasonic, Olympus, Fujifilm, Nikon, and Sony. From digital cameras and camera bags to video equipment, darkroom supplies, and prints of 19th-century presidents eating ice-cream cones, the shop houses gear for enthusiasts and professionals alike. On a mission to help clients ?Create Better Pictures,? staffers draw upon their photography training to help customers with a full-service photo lab, rental equipment, and free tech support. Experts also lead a full curriculum of classes and seminars that cover topics such as photo composition, Adobe Photoshop, and lighting techniques.
Posh Boutique’s chic catalogers fashionably aggregate their favorite designer clothing and accessories from Los Angeles, Miami, and New York City to create authentically American looks. Ladies enrobe denim-loving legs in the embraces of 1921 jeans ($165) or swaddle torsos in tops such as the EcoSkin Crescent Tunic ($88), harkening back to medieval fashions without the need for Renaissance-fair tickets or 20-sided dice. In the men’s section, Trunk shirts ($48+) drum up rock-band representation, and 575 jeans ($195) fade into form around macho calves. Handbag selections ($174+) carry heavy shopping clout, and accessories include cranium-shading hats ($58+) and a metallic-silver python snap bracelet studded with gunmetal Swarovski stones that protect wrists from unfashionable appearances and the bite of feral shirt sleeves.
The skilled stylists at Fantastic Sams Lincoln Park turn their deftly handled shears not only to the hair atop patrons' heads, but also to unruly facial hair, performing beard and mustache trims. Other services include facial waxing, color and texture treatments, and updos for formal events.
Armed with an army of innovative and certified shutterbugs, Olan Mills Portrait Studio 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 recreate 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.
The Village Inn may look like an simple country kitchen, but the food is nothing short of gourmet. Chef and owner John A. Martino calls on his training at the Culinary Institute of America and Le Cordon Bleu to craft a menu of contemporary American Continental cuisine, which ranges from potato-crusted Chilean sea bass to a veal porterhouse topped with sautéed mushrooms. After the chef inspects the dishes for quality, presentation, and political leanings, they emerge from the kitchen to waft gourmet scents through four separate dining areas. Everyday diners sidle up to white-clothed tables amid floral carpets and drapes in the Fireplace Room, while top-shelf liquors come together to form a host of creative cocktails in the wood-lined bar. For private occasions, groups of up to 20 gather at a long oak table beneath the cozy, low ceilings of the Wine Cellar Room, and large events bask in the glow of a towering chandelier in the bright and airy expanse of The Great Room.