Since 1988, the deal-hunters at Dry Clean Super Saver (Arizona) have connected customers with a trustworthy network of dry-cleaning and automotive-repair technicians. Armed with easy-to-use punch cards, clients save huge amounts money on dry cleaning and automotive maintenance, the two costliest household expenses after plumbing repair and poltergeist removal. The association of participating cleaners and garages stretches across the country, ensuring that cardholders can remove stains from a dress shirt or change an oil filter wherever they happen to be.
The soothing sound of bubbling water emanates from the pedicure footbaths along the wall at Nice Nails, where nails are the staff's specialty. The technicians gloss tips with traditional or long-lasting Shellac polish and treat clients seeking pedicures to a hot-stone massage. Mani-pedis can be enhanced with add-ons that slough away dead skin or seal in moisture more effectively than wearing sandwich bags as socks.
Gary Steiner knew he was in trouble. His social studies teacher—whom his classmates had nicknamed "the walrus"—had just caught him drawing the teacher's cartoon likeness with an exaggerated handlebar mustache and buckteeth. Instead of punishing him, however, the teacher offered him a job drawing caricatures for the Arizona State Senate. His childhood desire to sketch everything he saw had finally paid off. It was this desire that led Gary to eventually pick up a camera and fully realize what he calls "the ability to produce in print that which the eye envisions."
Over the last 15 years, Gary has done just that, toting his camera to fashion shows, weddings, and studio shoots where he immortalizes his subjects in clean, editorial-style images that have appeared in Arizona Foothills Magazine. His close-up portraits experiment with color contrast and saturation, ranging from stark, black-and-white face shots to softly colored full-length poses of women and children. His experience with boudoir and fine-art photography has allowed him to capture the beauty of the nude female form in intimate maternity shoots or in lingerie shots that incorporate candid poses and unconventional angles. Aside from having his boudoir work showcased in the Raintree/Northsight location of Fascinations, Gary's accomplishments include being able to spell daguerreotype from memory.
Countless repairs and home-remodeling projects can undoubtedly trace their lineage back to Paul's Ace Hardware, which began doling out DIY equipment and home-improvement supplies in 1956. Founded by Paul E. Dauwalder, the shop quickly expanded from its original 1,800-square-foot space, branching out to five shops that now operate beneath the expert eye of Paul's granddaughter. Cleaning products, outdoor equipment, and pool supplies are just a fragment of the stores' inventory, with power tools awaiting steady hands, fishing gear beckoning lake dwellers, and building materials—including the Tempe location's 56,000 square feet of lumber—standing poised and ready to be assembled into dams by handy beavers. Still in the city of its founding, the Scottsdale location has moved and upgraded to its own building.