All big movements start small, but many would be surprised to learn that Ten Thousand Villages—a nonprofit and retailer with 390 outlets nationwide—began out of a car trunk. In 1946, Edna Ruth Byler started the organization out of her car, taking a name from a quote by Mohandas Gandhi, who said, “India is not to be found in its few cities but in the 700,000 villages.” Her willpower and determination allowed her vision to grow into a nonprofit that today supports more than 130 artisans in 38 developing countries. These artisans' wares go on sale at the organization's nationwide retail outlets, which brim with items including jewelry, home decor, and refrigerator cozies.
Everything is made using environmentally friendly processes, and every artisan is paid a fair wage. The money raised from sales goes to supply the artisans—who might otherwise be unemployed or underemployed—with education, food, housing, and healthcare. The organization has risen to such stature that it won the People’s Choice Award for Green Business of the Year in 2005, and has acted as one of the founding members of the World Fair Trade Organization.
For more than two decades, American Mattress has promoted peaceful slumber in bedchambers throughout the Midwest with their vast selection of mattresses, headboards, and linens. The sleep experts strive to stay abreast of the latest bedding technology: their Serta mattresses are made with gel foam that supports curves, and Tempur-Pedic mattresses repel allergens, mites, and poltergeists looking to spoon. This devotion to a good night’s sleep has helped them earn the title of Best Mattress Store from suburban Chicago’s Daily Herald five years in a row. Additionally, American Mattress doubles down on each of its beds with a 30-day comfort guarantee and a 60-day best-price guarantee.
Now in its third generation, Dressel’s Do It Best Hardware’s managing family decks its shelves with hardware for any project, complemented by knowledgeable service. The friendly and knowledgeable staff shepherds do-it-themselfers through a 70,000-item store inventory, plus a further 8 million parts for home electronics and lawn and garden equipment available via the store’s partnership with Partscription. Holiday items abound in the shop, including holiday-light sets ($2.49+) to festoon homes in a festive glow and a replica of Charlie Brown’s Christmas tree ($14.99) that induces festive nostalgia and shelters gifts from fake snowfall.
Since 1976 Thermal-Chem Corp. specializes in providing decorative polymer floor coating systems for installation in commercial, retail, residential and institutional facilities. We pride ourselves on seeking to understand a client's flooring needs including on-site inspections and providing qualitiy trained installers
The blossom bundlers at Northlake Flowers and Gift Shop gather fresh flora and festive gifts into eye-catching arrangements that cater to a full calendar of holidays and special occasions. The Tie a Yellow Ribbon bouquet ($39.99+) rallies patriotic-hued blossoms such as red roses, white daisies, and blue delphiniums in a ribbon-wrapped vase fit for a Fourth of July barbecue or a date with Uncle Sam. Deliver birthday how-do-you-dos with a sextet of shiny mylar balloons ($29.99) in your choice of designs. Or, send sweet wishes with a cupcake in bloom, in which a layer of white carnations frosts a cake-shaped vase and cradles a wish-ready candle ($24.99). For the romance-ready set, the a-dog-able basket ($54.99) affords the colorful cuteness of a carnation puppy without the exorbitant vet bill, and a modern rectangular vase of pink roses ($59.99) arrives topped with a stylish butterfly pick to woo the heart of any nature lover or hungry praying mantis.