Voted St. Augustine’s Best Florist by the St. Augustine Record, Flowers by Shirley has been transforming palettes of flowers into contemporary and traditional masterworks of artful expression since 1973. Pitch woo at a crush's noggin as hard as you can with the Love in Bloom bouquet—a vase bursting with cream and white roses accented with pink snapdragons (starting at $38.99)—or thank a maternal unit for not trading you for magic beans with the Flourishing Garden basket, a jubilantly yellow mix of lilies, spray roses, daisies, and cowardly cartoon characters (starting at $39.99). Lovers of less high-maintenance plant life will prefer a decorative fern (starting at $39.99) to gussy up their dreary abandoned space station.
Selected a top furniture store in 2010 by the St. Augustine Record, Wholesale Furniture Outlet showcases over 6,000 square feet of dining-room, bedroom, and living-room accouterments from brands such as England by La-Z-Boy, Klaussner, Liberty, and Leather Italia USA. Raise relaxation and your feet to new heights in a leather recliner ($359+), or fall into perfect slumber with a new mattress set ($159+). A trove of comfy sofas ($379+) help cushion tough losses during football season, and a selection of end tables ($69+) can seamlessly pull a room together or foil burglary attempts when used to form an obstacle course.
Holly’s Nursery's botanical specialists aid the green-minded in adopting new leafy additions and perfecting lawn décor. The full-service nursery flourishes with a verdant populace of native plants and a wide selection of annual and perennial flowers, such as Endless Summer hydrangeas ($27.99/3 gal. pot) or Knock Out roses ($19.99+). Vibrant shrubs ($65) and an assortment of 15-gallon potted trees ($65) impart attractive textures to landscapes or shelter for escaped sea monkeys. Customers can also peruse Holly's organic vegetable garden and purchase edibles from its cache of fresh produce. Plant shipments arrive each week, filling the nursery with the ever-strident cries of newborn greenery.
At Bath Junkie, bathers prepare for beautification by customizing scrubs, soaks, and lotions with 18 tints and more than 200 fragrances including dirt, pumpkin, and lavender. The selection of bath-time trappings spans from phosphate-free bubble-bath crystals to lotions and creams ($15 for 6 oz.). Bath Junkie's products spurn animal cruelty and parabens and uplift skin with ingredients such as organic shea butter, aloe vera, unicorn tears, and vitamins A, D, and E. All of Bath Junkie's soothing sundries can be tweaked in both color and scent, allowing jars of exfoliating salt scrub ($30 large container, $17 small container) to match a bathroom's lilac color scheme or a nostril's freesia-friendly décor. While helping bath lovers reach sudsy serenity, Bath Junkie also lends a hand to the environment, offsetting its store's electricity-related carbon emissions by purchasing renewable energy credits.
"Never, never, never give up," is the driving mantra for David Oreck, who flew combat missions with the US Army Air Forces in World War II and returned home to build a business empire from scratch. He set out to design a machine to lighten hotel employees' load, making a lightweight vacuum cleaner as opposed to the traditional bulky, burdensome commercial cleaners. Naturally, the domestic market began clamoring for his high-powered yet easy-to-handle devices, and soon Oreck vacuums could be found in homes throughout the country.
Today, the company continues its tradition of innovation, simplifying household tasks with Steam-Glide mops for hard floors, HEPA-filter upright vacuums, and stain-killing cleaning products. Oreck's commitment to clean sends it headlong into the future, with high-tech air filters that react to their environment with automatic sensory controls, filtering odors, allergens, and curse words.
It might be hard to believe considering its vast array of products, but Sears, Roebuck and Co. began with one accessory: watches. In 1886, Richard W. Sears bought a box of unwanted watches from a jeweler, thinking he could turn a profit by selling them. He was correct and committed to the watch business by hiring Alvah C. Roebuck, an experienced watchmaker.
As time went on, though, their business expanded its umbrella far beyond what people wore on their wrists. Sears became known as the place to shop for almost any appliance, from sewing machines to those magical boxes that create water from nothing and clean your clothes.
Today, the stores stock clothing, accessories, electronics, kitchen equipment, tools for outdoor living, and home decor. This variety is sustained by Sears's proprietary brands—Kenmore, Craftsman, and DieHard, to name a few—and other national names that populate the shelves.