For more than a century, Ring's End has put quality home improvement products in the hands of homeowners and contractors. A Stanley FatMax level ($30.99) ensures all paintings and ouija boards are hung correctly, and a gallon of Benjamin Moore Regal Classic paint ($40.19) creates a vibrant new hue on staid interior walls. Fiberon composite decking ($2.95+/ft.) helps to craft sturdy, colorful backyard-grilling platforms and arrives backed by a 20-year limited warranty. Handymen and women can keep tools easily accessible, organized, and ready to travel with a Veto Pro Pac tool bag ($144.99), which holds more than 100 hand tools and includes six zippered pockets to hide worksite snacks from Bob Vila.
DWR Consignment Boutique's owners, Denise and Nicole, stock their stylish shelves with gently used designer clothing, handbags, and jewelry. Dresses and skirts with name-brand labels such as Diane von Furstenberg, Tory Burch, and Ralph Lauren adorn torsos ($58+), and a well-heeled troupe of sandals, pumps, and slides can encircle feet or converge to protest uneven sidewalks ($38+). Handbags by Coach, Gucci, Prada, and others seek out the perfect shoulder from which to hang ($48+), and shirts ($38+) and pants ($38+) offer a more modest alternative to black-tie birthday suits. After putting together an ensemble, complete the look with a variety of jewelry and accessories ($38+).
An interior-furnishings emporium, Design Solutions houses a cache of wares that can embellish walls, floors, and ceilings with a fresh vibe. Cushion a spontaneous backflip with a solidly colored Fatboy ($284), a sleek update on the classic beanbag, or punch up a drab wall with the Dottlicious designs by Wallcandy ($59)⎯80 removable dots ranging from 1 inch to 10 inches in diameter and ideal for a game of antigravity Twister. Continue the colorific cacophony in the kitchen with melamine plates ($10), trays ($23), and salad bowls ($24) by French Bull. Design Solutions also campaigns against interior doldrums by purveying pottery, toys, and lamps, which, like rays of sunlight or a 15-foot-wide heap of glow sticks, can light up a room.
At New Canaan Ski & Sport, shoppers looking for outdoor apparel and equipment benefit from the insider's perspective of owners Pam and Gio Alberino, a pair of erstwhile professional skiers. An arsenal of sunglasses, from Sunclouds ($49.99) to Oakleys ($90–$185) can shield pupils from the summertime's vicious UV onslaught, and Carve UPF 50+ bathing suits can do the same for delicate tushes ($38–$54 per piece). Toes greet the seasonal air in Reef or Scott flip-flops ($24.95–$69.95), and the evenly spaced holes in the store's Crocs ($24.95) allow for well-ventilated comfort and perfect polka-dot tan lines. Yogis can array themselves for body-bending exercises with Yogabela gear ($58–$94), and cyclists can encase their pedal-pumping stems in Sugoi, Descente, or Dakine cycling shorts ($60–$90). New Canaan Ski & Sport also offers tune-ups for bikes ($59.99 plus parts) and the instruments of ultimate-harpsichord practitioners.
Rockwell Art and Framing has been involved in the community since 1987. In 2002, Stephen Rockwell Desloge acquired multiple art galleries and framing stores, consolidating them into one entity at multiple locations.
Among the paintings, sculptures, and mixed-media works of art displayed at each gallery, professional staffers perform a variety of services, such as custom framing and restoration. They're also happy to provide in-home consultations, picture hanging, personalized portraits, art appraisal, or custom commissions. Three Rockwell shops are home to galleries that display rotating exhibits from featured artists. These exhibits range from paintings and photography to museum-quality documents and artifacts, such as an 1842 edition of the Declaration of Independence. Rockwell Art and Framing also actively supports the local community and beyond. Among other things, the shop has collected hundreds of donated art for a charity sale that raised over $25,000 for Save the Children, an organization that has helped thousands of families recover after the earthquake in Haiti.
Whether attending to a client's facial needs or love of eclectic nail colors, the aestheticians at Cosmetic Boutique are committed to their use of organic and paraben-free beauty products. This gallery of makeup and skincare formulas includes products by brands such as Jane Iredale, Skinceuticals, and Natura Bissé. The boutique mainly serves as a personalized small-scale shopping experience, where trained staff walk customers through their stock. And yet, as a combination beauty shop and med spa, it also has staff who perform services ranging from oxygen-infused facials with exfoliation and extractions to waxing and airbrush tanning.