Hennessey + Ingalls's eclectic bookstore sells tomes covering visual arts, such as photography, as well as interior design, landscaping, fashion photography and architecture. The founding family still owns and manages its paper-based stock, ensuring that volumes remain well organized according to the length of authors’ moustaches. Originally founded in 1963 as a refuge for rare and out-of-print books, the massive store—the Santa Monica location spans 8,000 square feet—supplies vital reference materials for local architectural firms, museums, art galleries, and schools. Hennessey + Ingalls also runs a small publishing division, which produces and distributes six titles each year, most of which are reprints focusing on California's modernist architecture and postmodernist oil paintings of avocados. They also offer a large selection of journals and notebooks. Hennessey's bibliophiles also purchase good-condition used copies and rare editions from independent owners.
Chi Chi Randolph has choreographed routines for hip-hop artists including Nelly and the Black Eyed Peas. Kari Lehman has 15 years of ballet training experience. Viviane Bressan turned her love of belly dance into a career, traversing the globe while teaching and performing the ancient art. At Dance Austin Studio, these three number among more than a dozen dance instructors whose dazzlingly diverse backgrounds enable an array of classes for everyone from preschoolers to grownups and fitness buffs to serious students of dance.
Zumba combines fast-paced cardio choreography with dynamic Latin rhythms, and the 18-and-older Sexy Stiletto Fit class uses high heels to tone calves and build confidence. Students can choose to learn fundamental positions, steps, and vocabulary during structured ballet, lyrical, and jazz programs, or they can develop video-ready swagger during hip-hop classes. The studio’s sense of fun occasionally spills out into the community—it recently teamed up with the city’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Management to spark a flash mob at city hall, held to raise awareness of emergency preparedness and help officials practice what to do if invaded by dancing aliens.
SwimSpot brings high fashion poolside by amassing a collection of designer bikini and one-piece swimsuits by brands such as Athena, Guess, and Nautica. Each swimsuit and cover-up incorporates contemporary trends such as asymmetrical cuts or tropical colours to create stylish silhouettes, and a fit-specialist service provides body-shape searches and remote one-on-one discussions with experts to find a flattering suit for any shape. Lauded in the pages of People Style Watch, Lucky, and Seventeen, an online bikini builder enables the beach bound to build their own ensemble by mixing and matching tops and bottoms using a tool that yields more than 1,000 possible combinations. In addition to providing detailed descriptions and material breakdowns, each swimsuit offered in the online store is modeled in a video that offers a 360-degree view, allowing customers to get a better idea of what they’ll look like as they run into the surf or slowly back away from a sleeping bear.
Juicy tidbits of chocolate-dunked fruit arrive on the doorsteps of family and friends, done up in colorful bouquets and candy boxes by the skilled fruit arrangers at Edible Arrangements' more than 1,100 franchises worldwide. The company's in-house chocolatiers drizzle albion strawberries and daisy pineapples in a trio of chocolate flavors. Once properly chocolated, the workers organize the preservative-free sweets into lush arrangements that resemble flowers in bloom. Customers can choose to plop their bouquets in a variety of vessels, including vases, mugs, and sports- or holiday-themed containers that add a personal touch to the edible gifts. Alternatively, customers can opt to adorn gifts with the cheery, red lids of candy boxes, nestling 12 chocolate-dipped morsels inside to build anticipation and determine if loved ones have x-ray vision as they guess whether fruit will come dusted in shredded coconut or drizzled in white chocolate.
High fashion isn't just for the rich and famous?it's for anyone who steps inside one of Cheryl Fudge Fashion Camp's locations. Even better, those locations offer an opportunity for visitors to be part of the creative process, which is normally reserved for women who can afford custom gowns or cats that are muses for their fashion-designer owners. You can try your hand at breathing new life into old jeans or making a dress from scratch, and the designers here will help turn your vision into a wearable garment. They have everything you need to get started, from a fleet of sewing machines to sparkly embellishments to basic clothing that acts as a blank slate. Beginners, hobbyists, and future Lagerfelds are welcome during open studio hours, and the staff also provides ample instruction during summer camps, birthday parties, and girls' night outs.
With 100% of its profits benefitting the Beit T’Shuvah center for drug and alcohol treatment, BTS Thrift Boutique bestows a philanthropic second life upon new and gently used designer clothing, housewares, books, and furnishings. Red-brick walls rise into vaulted ceilings in the loft-like space, which houses well-organized aisles of housewares in impeccable condition. Customers browse stacks of china plates, glasses, vases, pitchers, and clocks in search of a surprising treasure. In the clothing section, designer duds rotate faster than the hands on a cheetah's wristwatch.
Equipped with funds from BTS Thrift Boutique, the spiritually minded Beit T’Shuvah center is able to impart its 12-step philosophy and psychotherapy treatments to all patients, regardless of their economic situations.