The customer-service-focused staff at Goodman Building Supply, founded in 1955, arms to-do listers with hardware from an inventory of more than 60,000 items. Collect scraps from an upstart paper airline in a trash bin ($12.99+) or replace a bathroom elephant with a gleaming showerhead ($9.99+). The Certified Green Hardware store bathes Marin County in metaphorically verdant hues with its selection of more than 2,500 green products, including water-saving toilets and smart faucets.
The arrangements and installations of green door design fill homes with carefully balanced constructs of living plant material housed in and surrounded by artfully placed objet d'art. Single orchids ($28–$48) sweeten air and views with curling, colorful petals and intoxicating scents rumored to cause normally stoic house plants to shed their petals and go skinny stemming. Water-retaining succulents ($3–$38) thrive on arid counter tops or in dry gardens to steadfastly stand at attention flanked by fragrant candles or guardian statuary. Vintage pots line shelves alongside modern ceramic containers and one-of-a-kind carved wooden bowls, each competing to serve as the next vessel for an orchid arrangement with soft greens and wending branches ($45+) or to serve as a prop for the opening scene of Oliver!.
Sausalito Picture Framing's team of meticulous artisans harnesses more than 20 years of experience when customizing borders to flatter and conserve artwork of all sizes and types. The quaint storefront's walls showcase multitudinous molding samples, waiting patiently to grace the edges of paintings, tapestries, and blue ribbons from hot-dog-eating contests. A library of image-preserving mounting options includes acid-free matting, archival hinging tape, and UV-shunning glass, helping keep keepsakes' colors vibrant for years to come. The shop also hosts a 44-inch Epson 9800 Ultrachrome K3 inks printer, capable of printing family portraits in such high quality that parents often realize their twins aren't identical at all.
For more than 60 years, Toys“R”Us has been helping kids be kids and grown-ups to revisit their childhoods by providing one of the largest selections of top-brand toys, electronics, games and everyday baby essentials. Founder, Charles Lazarus, revolutionized the toy business by modeling his stores after supermarkets, providing a variety of options to suit varying ages and interests and offering customers to help themselves and have fun in the process. Today, that sense of playfulness is evident at nearly 600 stores in the United States alone, including a flagship location in Times Square where kids are greeted by a 60-foot Ferris wheel, a 5-ton animatronic T-Rex, and a life-sized, 4,000-square-foot Barbie house.
Beyond everybody's favorite bikes, trains and video games, each Toys“R”Us store keeps its shelves stocked with the season’s must-have toys as well as nostalgic standbys that never go out of style. Time-tested brands such as LEGO, Radio Flyer, NERF and Fisher-Price share the shelves with an expansive selection of electronics for older kids, including Wii U and tablets. And though the company has inspired generations of boys and girls to try their hardest not to grow up, it also strives to ensure budding brains develop right on track by devoting a significant portion of its stores to “smart-play” with a wide selection of electronic learning toys and software.
Toys“R”Us—whose extended family of brands includes Babies“R”Us and FAO Schwarz—has earned a number of awards and recognitions through the years, including a spot on Fortune’s list of the World’s Most Admired Companies in 2012. The company has also drawn considerable recognition for its expansive charitable efforts, which include partnerships with the Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation and Save the Children. This year also marks the tenth consecutive year that the company has partnered with the Marine Toys for Tots Foundation to collect new, unwrapped toys and monetary donations in its stores to benefit the organization.
Over the past 25 years, Cheap Pete’s framers have honed their technique to a science, creating high-quality framing for any type of artwork, document, or object. Four Bay Area locations stock a huge selection of ready-made frames, including environmentally friendly options crafted from sustainably harvested pine or bamboo. Collage frames display a multitude of photos, showcasing favorite family memories or charting the development of a tiny infant into an adult-size infant. Customers can also create DIY frames with a large selection of framing tools and supplies.
Cheap Pete’s custom-framing services give customers the choice of more than 300 styles of mouldings, five types of glass, and a rainbow of mat colors. Shadowboxes display three-dimensional objects such as sports jerseys, matchbox cars, or exhibitionistic human beings. The shop also stretches canvases onto canvas bars, readying them to be hung at home or on the walls of a gallery.
As an artist, Jay Joya views frames as pieces of art in and of themselves. He salvages old barn wood and rustic scraps to craft frames that he paints by hand. In addition to the details he puts into his custom borders, Joya's acid-free matting and high-quality glass and acrylic ensure works of art remain preserved for years. A stock of more than 80 sizes of ready-made frames is always at hand to frame pieces in any style, from landscape to portrait to panorama. Beyond art and photography, Joya and his staff help clients frame or shadowbox items such as mirrors, heirlooms, and perfectly cooked steaks.