English Gardens began as a single, family-owned nursery in 1954, and has since blossomed into a full-service landscaping and garden center with multiple locations, all owned and operated by second-generation family members. Each location facilitates both indoor and outdoor gardening projects. The florist department brings the outdoor flourish inside by arranging fresh-cut floral bouquets and gift baskets for all manner of occasions. Workshops and in-store presentations also allow the green-thumbed experts to impart advice on common gardening and decorating topics such as building a kitchen herb garden or housetraining a dogwood tree. During the summer season, English Gardens holds a summer planting sale as well as weekly in-store gardening tutorials every Saturday at 10 a.m.
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.
The hibernation experts at Mattress & Futon Shoppe help foster deep sleep with cushions from top brands such as Sealy, Stearns & Foster, and Corsicana. Well-versed in all forms of sleep habits, the store employees are happy to expound on the finer points of each mattress they keep in stock, which range from traditional innerspring beds to high-tech gel memory-foam mattresses. If your new mattress doesn't feel right or already has a family of monsters sleeping under it, Mattress & Futon Shoppe has a 100-day Don't Worry Sleep Happy comfort warranty, and you can return the unwanted item to one of 13 convenient locations.
With more than 3,000 products in stock and learned clerks, Organic America infuses would-be green thumbs with the supplies and skills to bolster indoor and outdoor gardens. The staff, which includes professional farmers and retired Swamp Things, educates clientele with seminars and in-store conversation. Weekly workshops detail the essential techniques necessary for successful organic or hydroponic harvests, including crop rotation and biological pest control. Behind the store's low-slung façade, verdant displays show the life cycle of healthy plants as they mature from seeds to flowers and eventually to parade floats.
According to the Haberman family, we are in the midst of a sewing renaissance. Having been in the business of selling a variety of fabrics, sewing supplies, and accessories since 1958, they should know. Owner Toby Haberman sees sewers inspired by TV’s Project Runway and Extreme Makeover: Home Edition wander the aisles of Haberman Fabrics’ 18,000-square-foot store, considering silks, lace, denims, or velvets for their projects. Many of them stay for sewing classes, in which both novices and intermediate sewers can learn new skills or wear thimbles on every finger.
The Aquarium Shop unleashes an assortment of aquatic denizens on land-living lifeforms, like a garage sale held by King Poseidon to raise money for repairs to his seahorse-powered cruiser. Items include saltwater, freshwater, and pond merchandise, complete with pond fish ($5–$25), pond plants ($5–$25), pond food ($10–$50), tropical fish ($2–$30), saltwater fish ($5–$100), and live rock ($8 per lb.). Find actors for your all-koi version of Hamlet, pick up an African cichlid for prom-night punch-bowl pranks, or buy coral with which to dress up in doll's clothing and play tea party. The Aquarium Shop also has a large variety of tanks in stock for fish owners looking to update the digs of their deep-dwelling dorsalled doppelgangers.