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.
For the past 30 years, Yankee Fireplace has outfitted homes with indoor and outdoor fireplaces, stoves, and grills, overseeing the installation process from the showroom to the first sanctioned spark. What began as a small retail location now encompasses two vast showrooms that share 50 functional fireplaces and stove displays between them. Here, customers can warm their hands in front of potential fireplaces or examine stoves for flame output. Both locations are authorized dealers of major brands such as Weber, LYNX, The Big Green, Jøtul, Heat & Glo, and Regency, and the technicians at Yankee Fireplace service everything they sell. Though fireplaces and grills are the business's main focus, they also bedeck patios with handsome furniture sets, umbrellas, and hammocks capable of supporting one or two people, or up to twelve outstretched garden gnomes.
Sew Portland serves both novice needlers and savvy stitch gurus alike with myriad sewing classes and supplies. Dust off neglected stitching apparatus and cart them over to Sew Portland for a brief checkup, during which one of Sew Portland's cadre of savvy sewing-machine technicians will test all the cogs and bolts to make sure the mechanism is up to snuff. Once the checkup has been completed and the gerbil that rotates the wheel powering the machine has been fed and petted, the technician will guide Groupon buyers through a reintroduction to sewing, filling noggins with expert tidbits about how to construct a patchwork wedding dress or how to repair a sail in the middle of a hurricane.
More than two decades ago, Deb Caron Plourde traded the corporate world for the warm confines of her personal glass-fusing studio. The result was Sundancer Stained Glass, now a bustling workshop where beads, sushi plates, and custom windows emerge from the fire each day. Often led by Plourde, regular classes encourage interested parties to hone techniques from sculpturing to smoldering while learned glass-fusers can pick up supplies by brands such as Bullseye and Kokomo for the eventual satisfaction of throwing a baseball through a window you made yourself.
For more than 18 years, Tiny Tim's Moving & Trucking has been ferrying possessions from location to location in a safe and speedy manner. The expert handypersons hoist heavy and delicate items in their eponymous trucks, nimbly moving antiques and pianos with a gentle touch and hauling off bulk garbage to a great compactor in the sky. They also handle such domestic tasks as housecleaning and furniture assembly.