Lightshed Photography Studio’s three heads—Daniel St. John, Kendra Hack, and Robert Reynolds—are not just photographers, but well-rounded visual artists. St. John began his career with pencil sketches, whereas Hack spent years sculpting, and Reynolds wielded a paintbrush well into college. The trio’s medium-spanning backgrounds shine through in their shots of weddings, families, and high-school seniors, which pop with bright colors or elegant black-and-white contrasts edited in after the shoot.
The photographers divide their portrait shoots into two parts, seguing smoothly from traditional poses to more experimental shots as subject-selected tunes thump in the background. Beforehand, subjects hash out their shoot’s details in a consultation which covers specifics from proper dress and prop options to which Madam Tussauds' figurine will pose as their spouse. Afterward, subjects spend a viewing session perusing the best 40 or so proofs from the hundreds of shots snapped in their session, enjoying complimentary coffee or wine in the process.
Alan J. Gardner opened his Salem factory in 1933, winning over generations of loyal customers with custom-made and odd-sized mattresses in a wide range of styles. Massachusetts-made pallets support sleepers with hand tufted construction and fluffy cotton fillings catered specifically to each client's specifications. The company's direct manufacturer-to-customer supply chain erases the influence of bothersome middlemen or arrogant, cigar-chomping mattress barons. Sleepers select from a variety of comfy cushion styles, such as latex, plush top, tufted, or pocket coils, with options for all-natural materials such as Joma wool and layers of thick cotton-knit fabric.
Pump It Up's indoor inflatable arenas launch socked striplings into the air with a plethora of kid-friendly bounce pads. Staffers supervise fun-filled visits, during which adult counterparts leap around with their kids through gargantuan bounce houses, skip down air-filled slides, and slither like snakes covered in bacon grease through an inflated obstacle course.
The colorful venue also hosts custom birthday parties and private team parties, each themed to please the partygoers in question. These soirees immerse children in a schedule of interactive activities befitting a pirate or a superhero while melting off youthful energy faster than ice cubes thrown into a running DVD player. The birthday boy or girl even gets to blow out the candles on their cake seated in their blow-up throne. Occasionally, the staffers switch off the lights, arming the roomful of players with glow sticks and bracelets as they navigate the air-cushioned obstaclescape. Relying on the staffers' vigilant, watchful eyes, guardians can rest assured that their charges will stay safe, and each piece of the inflatable playground is held to the floor and ceiling by a complex series of anchors installed according to strict safety standards.
Jacqui Newman helms Salamander Sisters Occult Goods & Services, where she harnesses her doctorate in metaphysics and her clairvoyant nature to help clients find answers. Newman, a high priestess and an ordained reverend, blends her eclectic background to lead introductory classes on witchcraft and grant visitors spiritual advice through consultations.
In addition to the medley of metaphysical services she and her staff provide, Newman also fills the store space with an abundance of mystical items such as magical potions, jewelry, and candles that bring good luck or ward off nightmares.
Designer Bath and Salem Plumbing Supply, which Northshore Magazine editors and readers voted as the best bath supplies store in the North Shore area, equips homeowners with a vast assortment of kitchen and bathroom furnishings from dozens of brands, including Dornbracht, Duravit, and Fairmont. Contemporary designs and classic models dot a 4,500-square-foot showroom, where a knowledgeable staff helps customers select the polished chrome towel bar ($34) or two-robe bathroom hook ($15) that best matches their lucky hubcap. An American Standard single-lever kitchen faucet expels water through a sprayer ($75), and a Grohe showerhead unleashes jets of moisture from a 6-inch-wide chrome disk ($63). Two levels of magnification power on a double-sided Kimball & Young vanity makeup mirror ($107) provide an up-close view for poring over pores or communicating face-to-face with the tiny pilots in your eyeballs. Designer Bath and Salem Plumbing Supply does not provide installation.