Gallery Lafayette offers customized-framing treatments and original prints, watercolors, and gifts. Using special conservation glass and acid-free mat boards, skilled frame-ologists protect prized photographs and collectibles from the damaging effects of light, humidity, acidity, and Father Time's righteous fists for unblemished wall hanging. The average custom-framing order is around $180—combine two Groupons and frame your favorite oversized obedience-school diploma or Ken Burns–autographed placemat. Inside the gallery, customers will find an assortment of gifts featuring pen-and-ink illustrations of classic Old Town landmarks such as Captain's Row and Gadsby's Tavern. Images are magically transferred onto tote bags ($30), tea towels ($15.95), and more. Snag a set of eight note cards ($12.95) to start a one-man letter-writing campaign to rename the Route 1 IHOP to the William Howard Taft Memorial House of Pancakes.
Part art gallery, part cocoa bar, Artfully Chocolate was established in 2007 when owner Eric Nelson quit his job as an executive in order to pursue his artistic passions. Needing a little something extra to draw attention to his shop and unwilling to sound a tornado siren after every purchase, Eric called on the services of friend and chocolatier Rob Kingsbury. Kingsbury instantly infused the colorful gallery with the sweet allure Eric was seeking.
Today, the duo's handiwork takes center stage inside two different locations: Eric's masterpieces parade across the walls, and Rob's expertise reveals itself in sips and bites of decadent drinks and pastries. They also host tasting classes, including a wine-pairing class and chocolate-tasting class.
Inside Experts in Framing, the work of local artists decorates the walls alongside 4,000 sample frames. The technicians here keep busy enshrining portraits, paintings, and 3D artifacts of all sizes and shapes. They use a computerized framing machine and a mat cutter to make clean, precise cuts for a streamlined, professional look. And they enjoy tackling the most challenging of tasks—past projects include the framing of an Apache helicopter blade and the mounting of a transdimensional portal.
The former Metropolitan Fine Arts Center founded more than 14 years ago has recently joined forces with the Metropolitan School of The Arts. This multidisciplinary performing-arts organization fosters choreographed skills and creates performance opportunities in dance, music, and theater for a diverse population of students of all ages and abilities. Its students have gone to perform on Broadway, at The Juilliard School, and in highly esteemed companies, such as the Mark Morris Dance Company, The Washington Ballet, and Microsoft. Youth programs include musical-theater and fine-arts workshops, as well as ballet and other half-day dance camps for children as young as 3. Adult classes range from basic to advanced, including ballet, jazz, and tap lessons, plus yoga and ballet-barre fitness workouts.
Crystal Framing Gallery's staff skillfully handles a range of customer requests, from traditional photography and portrait framing to special projects such as engraving, photo restoration, and object framing. Patrons choose from more than 2,000 available materials and framing styles that include conservation, shadow boxing, and glued macaroni.
The Crime Museum shines a light on the dark underbelly of society with more than 100 interactive exhibits spread across three stories and 25,000 square feet of gallery space. After resting their weary bones in an unplugged electric chair, fans of CSI can live out television fantasies at the Crime Scene Investigation exhibit, where they can learn what it takes to be a forensic scientist and watch professionals in action before trying to determine whether or not fellow museum-goers exhibit the traits of serial killers. The exhibit also serves as a crash course in fingerprinting, DNA testing, fraudulent-check investigation, and dental-impression and ballistics analysis. The museum devotes an entire level to the now-retired set of America’s Most Wanted, providing an adjoining exhibit where fans of the show can step into a green screen for a criminal profile or imaginary Caribbean vacation. The museum’s many permanent exhibits include A Notorious History of American Crime, about the country's felonious forefathers, and an exploration into one of the most heinous masterminds of modern times in the Ted Kaczynski: The Unabomber exhibit.