Socially conscious crafters can take home a hand-stitched measuring-tape cat (Vietnam, $8) from Mai Vietnamese Handicrafts, while frugal fashionistas can sport dancing-girl earrings made from recycled soda cans by KICK Trading Ltd. (Kenya, $12) or a marbled bead choker from TARA Projects (India, $16). Decorate the great outdoors with Manos Amigas' ceramic bird wind-chime (Peru, $44), or beautify the indoors with the world children wall hanging (Haiti, $84) from Comité Artisanal Haitien. Fair-trade staples, such as Equal Exchange coffee, tea, and chocolates, make tasty gifts for Father's Day, Secretary's Day, or Father's Secretary's Day.
"Wired and Fired is the best date [we] have ever been on," wrote Haley and Jeff, whose first meet-up went so swimmingly that they married less than two years later. Perhaps the duo bonded over their shared creativity: at the studio, blank white dishes, figurines, boxes, and banks await fresh coats of paint and glaze from brush holders. Artists also can stop by the Bling Bar to spangle their bisqueware with colorful gems poured from the bartender's shaker. Pieces emerge glossy and dishwasher-safe from the kiln about three days later.
Wired & Fired isn't just popular with the cupid-struck set—the kid-friendly environment is also a favorite hangout for families, especially when Family Night on Wednesdays offers discounts for tots. (Tuesdays are Ladies' Nights.) Children and adults alike can hold their birthday parties or private get-togethers at the studio, where they're invited to bring their own snacks, pizzas, and even 21-or-older beverages. Partiers can daub paint onto pottery or learn to fuse glass into jewelry, bowls, and vases. Those preparing a custom gift may call upon the talents of Wired & Fired's on-staff artists.
With more than 6,000 square feet of showroom space, Consignment Furniture Depot offers an ever-changing inventory of new and lightly loved home furnishings and features brand-name designers including Drexel, Lane, Bassett, and Ethan Allen. Consignment Furniture Depot shoppers can peruse its photo directory to get an up-to-date sampling of available lighting, rugs, and mirrors, as well as Marcia's collection of refurbished furniture. Outfit rooms with leather couches ($200+), love seats ($125+), and a tall wooden dresser-and-mirror combo ($140) or give mattresses some regal outerwear by grabbing a modern black queen-bed set ($105). With a computerized inventory system, Consignment Furniture Depot promises simple, straightforward pricing and offers periodic markdowns based on how long pieces have been living in the showroom and whether or not they come to life after hours.
Nadeau characterizes its furniture as "with a soul" because it's true artisan work: handcrafted from wood rather than mass-produced from gasket pylons. Showcase fine china and live gerbils in a double-domed glass-door cabinet ($284), or in a hefty, finely trimmed kitchen hutch ($410). Or, display a new moving picture box on a delicately polished TV stand/buffet ($500). Small console tables ($160) and storage chests ($224) come in myriad of stains and colors, and many pieces, such as an immaculately carved chest of drawers ($391), are one-of-a-kind. Nadeau's ever-changing inventory includes a variety of sturdy dining room tables ($435–$548) and chairs ($80 each). Pieces are always fully assembled, ready to welcome any tuckered torso or mound of toothbrushes.
Part of the ancient discipline of traditional Chinese medicine, acupuncture is gaining more and more acceptance by practitioners of Western medicine. The treatment uses hair-thin needles placed into the skin to help alleviate the symptoms of a variety of health problems, including chronic pain, stress and anxiety, and gastrointestinal disorders.
During a client's first appointment at Northside Acupuncture, licensed acupuncturist Julie Shengaout reviews their medical history and Fantasy Football lineup and performs a physical examination. She also evaluates the client’s current medications, vitamins, and supplements before the acupuncture treatment.