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Best Of Atlanta 2012 Consumer Culture Large


Consumer Culture


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Best spa BOA Award Winner

Jeju Sauna

Best sporting goods BOA Award Winner

Dick's Sporting Goods
And other metro Atlanta locations.

Best CSA BOA Award Winner

Riverview Farm
954 White Graves Road, Ranger. 706-334-2926. www.grassfedcow.com.

Best DIY to try BOA Award Winner

Indie-pendent
From the exposed brick walls to handmade woodgrain clocks to necklaces and earrings that look like they were plucked from a branch in a dewy forest, there's something pleasantly earthy and organic about the Indie-Pendent. Rugged and relaxed, the boutique offers handmade wares by artisans from all overmore...
From the exposed brick walls to handmade woodgrain clocks to necklaces and earrings that look like they were plucked from a branch in a dewy forest, there's something pleasantly earthy and organic about the Indie-Pendent. Rugged and relaxed, the boutique offers handmade wares by artisans from all over the country - and it offers DIY-minded shoppers the chance to get their hands dirty. Or maybe not so dirty. The Indie-Pendent hosts workshops on everything from beer brewing, canning, reupholstery, and sewing to chakra opening (ouch) and reiki massage. Prices for those classes vary, but every Saturday there's a free demo for people looking to DIT (Do It Themselves) on a dime. less...

Best event (and acronym) BOA Award Winner

Indie Craft Experience
Craft fairs of yore conjure images of hot-glue-and-shell art. And Christmas ornaments made of Popsicle sticks and yarn. And those toilet paper cover things that form crocheted half-ladies in antebellum garb. The Indie Craft Experience - ICE for short - is not that kind of craft fair. Like, not atmore...
Craft fairs of yore conjure images of hot-glue-and-shell art. And Christmas ornaments made of Popsicle sticks and yarn. And those toilet paper cover things that form crocheted half-ladies in antebellum garb. The Indie Craft Experience - ICE for short - is not that kind of craft fair. Like, not at all. Two weekends a year - one in fall/winter, one in the spring/summer - dozens of indie crafters, jewelry makers, artists, and knitters gather at the gorgeous Ambient Plus Studio in Southwest Atlanta to sell their wares. Organizers and crafters Christy Petterson and Shannon Mulkey also organize an equally awesome bridal show called Wedding Day Hooray, a vintage show called Salvage, and an annual holiday pop-up shop (last year it was at Criminal Records, the year before Woodruff Art Center). Get to the next ICE event early - like, really early - to score a canvas tote designed by a local artist and stuffed with swag. And if there ever happens to be a vendor selling Popsicle stick art, we bet it will actually be pretty cool. www.ice-atlanta.com. less...

Best fashion blogger BOA Award Winner

TIE: Ashley Hesseltine and Asian Cajuns
wittyandpretty.com; asiancajuns.com

Best gifts for literally everyone BOA Award Winner

Richards Variety Store
Setting out to buy gifts for people is the worst. The thought process usually goes something like, "Will they like it? Is it something they already have? Why am I spending money on things that aren't for me?" Just kidding about the last part. But any agony that might go along with the gift-purchasingmore...
Setting out to buy gifts for people is the worst. The thought process usually goes something like, "Will they like it? Is it something they already have? Why am I spending money on things that aren't for me?" Just kidding about the last part. But any agony that might go along with the gift-purchasing process is definitely numbed when there's a place you can go to find something for anyone. CL readers have consistently agreed that Richards Variety Store has the best selection of toys in town, but it has so much more than that and for people who are well beyond puzzle-and-doll appreciation age (not everyone necessarily reaches that age). Its selection of Kikkerland - makers of funky kitchenware and other miscellanea - is unbeatable, as is its selection of greeting cards. It also has a huge selection of books, board games, puzzles, candles, home goods, stationary, calendars, costumes (including those horrifying horse head masks) - basically, a little bit of everything for everyone. less...

Best gym BOA Award Winner

LA Fitness Ansley Mall
And other metro Atlanta locations.

Best hardware store to stand up to the Man BOA Award Winner

Intown ACE Hardware
Despite vocal grassroots opposition to the big-box giant's plan, Suburban Plaza will soon be home to a brand-new Walmart. The main concern among Decaturites - besides traffic and the usual borderline-classist stuff - is that the corporate juggernaut will imperil the little (or, littler) guys who'vemore...
Despite vocal grassroots opposition to the big-box giant's plan, Suburban Plaza will soon be home to a brand-new Walmart. The main concern among Decaturites - besides traffic and the usual borderline-classist stuff - is that the corporate juggernaut will imperil the little (or, littler) guys who've done business in the area for decades. Among the smaller-box establishments to come up most frequently is the well-loved Intown ACE Hardware on Scott Boulevard, just blocks from the site of the proposed Walmart. Whether or not it can compete price-wise, it will definitely be able to compete in terms of charm, friendliness, and helpfulness. This crap economy has already necessitated some adjustments to the store's inventory - it's begun selling things like jewelry, T-shirts, specialty plants, and other non-hardware items - and will continue to do so to remain relevant in a funky, DIY-minded community that wants to see it succeed. less...

Best-looking grocery shoppers BOA Award Winner

Whole Foods Market
Between the delicious hot bar(s), salad bar, cheese bar, and randomly placed free samples throughout the store, there's enough going on at the Whole Foods at Midtown Place to keep your head on a swivel. But don't become too distracted by the variety of healthful if overpriced foodstuffs to appreciatemore...
Between the delicious hot bar(s), salad bar, cheese bar, and randomly placed free samples throughout the store, there's enough going on at the Whole Foods at Midtown Place to keep your head on a swivel. But don't become too distracted by the variety of healthful if overpriced foodstuffs to appreciate the impressive sampling of good-looking Atlantans, civilians and uniformed Whole Foods employees alike. No offense intended to people who shop at Publix or Kroger, but there's something about craft beers, organic cereals, and hemp soaps that attract a nice-looking, sometimes tattooed, always-left-of-mainstream clientele. You have to grocery shop, anyway. Why not do it where you can get an eyeful? less...

Best massage therapist BOA Award Winner

Barbara Boling

Woodstock Wellness
770-655-1203

Best pet store BOA Award Winner

PetSmart (Atlanta Locations)
And other metro Atlanta locations.

Best doggie day care BOA Award Winner

Barking Hound Village Lofts
And other metro Atlanta locations.

Best doggie day care BOA Award Winner

Barking Hound Village Buckhead
And other metro Atlanta locations.

Best alternative to CVS BOA Award Winner

Little Five Points Pharmacy
Walgreens, CVS, hell, even Target. These are all fine places to fill a prescription. But even if it's the last thing on your mind when you're waiting in agony for your heartburn medication to be divvied out, there's something to be said for atmosphere, personalized service - and history. More old-schoolmore...
Walgreens, CVS, hell, even Target. These are all fine places to fill a prescription. But even if it's the last thing on your mind when you're waiting in agony for your heartburn medication to be divvied out, there's something to be said for atmosphere, personalized service - and history. More old-school general store than generic pharmacy, Little Five Points Pharmacy has served eclectic Inman Park and the surrounding neighborhoods since 1981. While you're getting a prescription filled for that rowdy gastroenteritis, browse through the wall of DVDs and shelves of other quirky natural health items to take your mind off your bowel troubles. Or, if you're not big on popping pills, take a more holistic route to wellness: One of its primary pharmacists is also a certified herbalist and massage therapist. less...

Best change of a dress BOA Award Winner

The Clothing Warehouse
Shopping at thrift stores isn't for everyone. Scouring racks of other people's discarded belongings - that you just have to hope were laundered in advance - to maybe dig up a couple of cute things every couple of hours. And there's no guarantee those cute things will be vintage cute things. Clothingmore...
Shopping at thrift stores isn't for everyone. Scouring racks of other people's discarded belongings - that you just have to hope were laundered in advance - to maybe dig up a couple of cute things every couple of hours. And there's no guarantee those cute things will be vintage cute things. Clothing Warehouse, with its racks upon racks of color-coded dresses, shirts, and skirts (men's clothes, too), is a sure thing - a kind of carefully curated thrift store. A few months prior to celebrating their 20th year in Atlanta, owners Jim Buckley and Erin Faulman expanded their intown operations and opened a huge, sunny space at the corner of 10th and Peachtree streets in Midtown (their flagship store is still open in Little Five Points). The same great candy-colored vintage duds abound - and, of course, there's the famous selection of used (in the good way) cowboy boots - in a shiny new space. Beats spending an entire Saturday in a musty thrift store. less...

Best crossfit BOA Award Winner

BTB Fitness - Poncey-Highland
And other metro Atlanta locations.

Best man's man antiques BOA Award Winner

The Biggar's Antiques
Antiquing isn't all Queen Anne dining room sets, Depression glass, and display cases filled with Hummel figurines. This is especially true at the Biggar's Antiques in Chamblee, which prides itself on not being "your typical antique store." Part retail outlet, part prop house for local movie productions,more...
Antiquing isn't all Queen Anne dining room sets, Depression glass, and display cases filled with Hummel figurines. This is especially true at the Biggar's Antiques in Chamblee, which prides itself on not being "your typical antique store." Part retail outlet, part prop house for local movie productions, Biggar's occupies a 100-year-old church, and its facade is plastered with bright tin signs from stores, gas stations, and restaurants of a bygone era. The place is family owned, and a Biggar is always on the clock. From old fixtures and electronics, to back issues of Playboy and baseball cards, there's plenty for more masculine antiquers to get excited about. At the risk of hijacking a pun the owners already nixed - and for good reason - Biggar's is better. less...

Best place to meet the maker BOA Award Winner

HomeGrown
A sign inside HomeGrown cautions shoppers to "Just say no to mass-produced art," not that there's any mass-produced art to speak of at the Decatur craft market and artists' collective. But just in case, you're being watched ... by Mr. T (there's a shrine to him in the corner). And by at least one ofmore...
A sign inside HomeGrown cautions shoppers to "Just say no to mass-produced art," not that there's any mass-produced art to speak of at the Decatur craft market and artists' collective. But just in case, you're being watched ... by Mr. T (there's a shrine to him in the corner). And by at least one of the indie artists who sells their work there. Staffed by artists, the co-op-style boutique sells wall art, pottery, jewelry, photography, and housewares to buy as gifts for others or as gifts to yourself. There are always new artists setting up displays and always something new to see. And if there's an artist you particularly love, you can check out the schedule on HomeGrown's website and drop in to say "Hi" when they're working. Mr. T pities the fool who doesn't say "No" to mass-produced art. less...


Best spa BOA Award Winner

Jeju Sauna

Best sporting goods BOA Award Winner

Dick's Sporting Goods
And other metro Atlanta locations.

Best CSA BOA Award Winner

Riverview Farm
954 White Graves Road, Ranger. 706-334-2926. www.grassfedcow.com.

Best DIY to try BOA Award Winner

Indie-pendent
From the exposed brick walls to handmade woodgrain clocks to necklaces and earrings that look like they were plucked from a branch in a dewy forest, there's something pleasantly earthy and organic about the Indie-Pendent. Rugged and relaxed, the boutique offers handmade wares by artisans from all overmore...
From the exposed brick walls to handmade woodgrain clocks to necklaces and earrings that look like they were plucked from a branch in a dewy forest, there's something pleasantly earthy and organic about the Indie-Pendent. Rugged and relaxed, the boutique offers handmade wares by artisans from all over the country - and it offers DIY-minded shoppers the chance to get their hands dirty. Or maybe not so dirty. The Indie-Pendent hosts workshops on everything from beer brewing, canning, reupholstery, and sewing to chakra opening (ouch) and reiki massage. Prices for those classes vary, but every Saturday there's a free demo for people looking to DIT (Do It Themselves) on a dime. less...

Best event (and acronym) BOA Award Winner

Indie Craft Experience
Craft fairs of yore conjure images of hot-glue-and-shell art. And Christmas ornaments made of Popsicle sticks and yarn. And those toilet paper cover things that form crocheted half-ladies in antebellum garb. The Indie Craft Experience - ICE for short - is not that kind of craft fair. Like, not atmore...
Craft fairs of yore conjure images of hot-glue-and-shell art. And Christmas ornaments made of Popsicle sticks and yarn. And those toilet paper cover things that form crocheted half-ladies in antebellum garb. The Indie Craft Experience - ICE for short - is not that kind of craft fair. Like, not at all. Two weekends a year - one in fall/winter, one in the spring/summer - dozens of indie crafters, jewelry makers, artists, and knitters gather at the gorgeous Ambient Plus Studio in Southwest Atlanta to sell their wares. Organizers and crafters Christy Petterson and Shannon Mulkey also organize an equally awesome bridal show called Wedding Day Hooray, a vintage show called Salvage, and an annual holiday pop-up shop (last year it was at Criminal Records, the year before Woodruff Art Center). Get to the next ICE event early - like, really early - to score a canvas tote designed by a local artist and stuffed with swag. And if there ever happens to be a vendor selling Popsicle stick art, we bet it will actually be pretty cool. www.ice-atlanta.com. less...

Best fashion blogger BOA Award Winner

TIE: Ashley Hesseltine and Asian Cajuns
wittyandpretty.com; asiancajuns.com

Best gifts for literally everyone BOA Award Winner

Richards Variety Store
Setting out to buy gifts for people is the worst. The thought process usually goes something like, "Will they like it? Is it something they already have? Why am I spending money on things that aren't for me?" Just kidding about the last part. But any agony that might go along with the gift-purchasingmore...
Setting out to buy gifts for people is the worst. The thought process usually goes something like, "Will they like it? Is it something they already have? Why am I spending money on things that aren't for me?" Just kidding about the last part. But any agony that might go along with the gift-purchasing process is definitely numbed when there's a place you can go to find something for anyone. CL readers have consistently agreed that Richards Variety Store has the best selection of toys in town, but it has so much more than that and for people who are well beyond puzzle-and-doll appreciation age (not everyone necessarily reaches that age). Its selection of Kikkerland - makers of funky kitchenware and other miscellanea - is unbeatable, as is its selection of greeting cards. It also has a huge selection of books, board games, puzzles, candles, home goods, stationary, calendars, costumes (including those horrifying horse head masks) - basically, a little bit of everything for everyone. less...

Best gym BOA Award Winner

LA Fitness Ansley Mall
And other metro Atlanta locations.

Best hardware store to stand up to the Man BOA Award Winner

Intown ACE Hardware
Despite vocal grassroots opposition to the big-box giant's plan, Suburban Plaza will soon be home to a brand-new Walmart. The main concern among Decaturites - besides traffic and the usual borderline-classist stuff - is that the corporate juggernaut will imperil the little (or, littler) guys who'vemore...
Despite vocal grassroots opposition to the big-box giant's plan, Suburban Plaza will soon be home to a brand-new Walmart. The main concern among Decaturites - besides traffic and the usual borderline-classist stuff - is that the corporate juggernaut will imperil the little (or, littler) guys who've done business in the area for decades. Among the smaller-box establishments to come up most frequently is the well-loved Intown ACE Hardware on Scott Boulevard, just blocks from the site of the proposed Walmart. Whether or not it can compete price-wise, it will definitely be able to compete in terms of charm, friendliness, and helpfulness. This crap economy has already necessitated some adjustments to the store's inventory - it's begun selling things like jewelry, T-shirts, specialty plants, and other non-hardware items - and will continue to do so to remain relevant in a funky, DIY-minded community that wants to see it succeed. less...

Best-looking grocery shoppers BOA Award Winner

Whole Foods Market
Between the delicious hot bar(s), salad bar, cheese bar, and randomly placed free samples throughout the store, there's enough going on at the Whole Foods at Midtown Place to keep your head on a swivel. But don't become too distracted by the variety of healthful if overpriced foodstuffs to appreciatemore...
Between the delicious hot bar(s), salad bar, cheese bar, and randomly placed free samples throughout the store, there's enough going on at the Whole Foods at Midtown Place to keep your head on a swivel. But don't become too distracted by the variety of healthful if overpriced foodstuffs to appreciate the impressive sampling of good-looking Atlantans, civilians and uniformed Whole Foods employees alike. No offense intended to people who shop at Publix or Kroger, but there's something about craft beers, organic cereals, and hemp soaps that attract a nice-looking, sometimes tattooed, always-left-of-mainstream clientele. You have to grocery shop, anyway. Why not do it where you can get an eyeful? less...

Best massage therapist BOA Award Winner

Barbara Boling

Woodstock Wellness
770-655-1203

Best pet store BOA Award Winner

PetSmart (Atlanta Locations)
And other metro Atlanta locations.

Best doggie day care BOA Award Winner

Barking Hound Village Lofts
And other metro Atlanta locations.

Best doggie day care BOA Award Winner

Barking Hound Village Buckhead
And other metro Atlanta locations.

Best alternative to CVS BOA Award Winner

Little Five Points Pharmacy
Walgreens, CVS, hell, even Target. These are all fine places to fill a prescription. But even if it's the last thing on your mind when you're waiting in agony for your heartburn medication to be divvied out, there's something to be said for atmosphere, personalized service - and history. More old-schoolmore...
Walgreens, CVS, hell, even Target. These are all fine places to fill a prescription. But even if it's the last thing on your mind when you're waiting in agony for your heartburn medication to be divvied out, there's something to be said for atmosphere, personalized service - and history. More old-school general store than generic pharmacy, Little Five Points Pharmacy has served eclectic Inman Park and the surrounding neighborhoods since 1981. While you're getting a prescription filled for that rowdy gastroenteritis, browse through the wall of DVDs and shelves of other quirky natural health items to take your mind off your bowel troubles. Or, if you're not big on popping pills, take a more holistic route to wellness: One of its primary pharmacists is also a certified herbalist and massage therapist. less...

Best change of a dress BOA Award Winner

The Clothing Warehouse
Shopping at thrift stores isn't for everyone. Scouring racks of other people's discarded belongings - that you just have to hope were laundered in advance - to maybe dig up a couple of cute things every couple of hours. And there's no guarantee those cute things will be vintage cute things. Clothingmore...
Shopping at thrift stores isn't for everyone. Scouring racks of other people's discarded belongings - that you just have to hope were laundered in advance - to maybe dig up a couple of cute things every couple of hours. And there's no guarantee those cute things will be vintage cute things. Clothing Warehouse, with its racks upon racks of color-coded dresses, shirts, and skirts (men's clothes, too), is a sure thing - a kind of carefully curated thrift store. A few months prior to celebrating their 20th year in Atlanta, owners Jim Buckley and Erin Faulman expanded their intown operations and opened a huge, sunny space at the corner of 10th and Peachtree streets in Midtown (their flagship store is still open in Little Five Points). The same great candy-colored vintage duds abound - and, of course, there's the famous selection of used (in the good way) cowboy boots - in a shiny new space. Beats spending an entire Saturday in a musty thrift store. less...

Best crossfit BOA Award Winner

BTB Fitness - Poncey-Highland
And other metro Atlanta locations.

Best man's man antiques BOA Award Winner

The Biggar's Antiques
Antiquing isn't all Queen Anne dining room sets, Depression glass, and display cases filled with Hummel figurines. This is especially true at the Biggar's Antiques in Chamblee, which prides itself on not being "your typical antique store." Part retail outlet, part prop house for local movie productions,more...
Antiquing isn't all Queen Anne dining room sets, Depression glass, and display cases filled with Hummel figurines. This is especially true at the Biggar's Antiques in Chamblee, which prides itself on not being "your typical antique store." Part retail outlet, part prop house for local movie productions, Biggar's occupies a 100-year-old church, and its facade is plastered with bright tin signs from stores, gas stations, and restaurants of a bygone era. The place is family owned, and a Biggar is always on the clock. From old fixtures and electronics, to back issues of Playboy and baseball cards, there's plenty for more masculine antiquers to get excited about. At the risk of hijacking a pun the owners already nixed - and for good reason - Biggar's is better. less...

Best place to meet the maker BOA Award Winner

HomeGrown
A sign inside HomeGrown cautions shoppers to "Just say no to mass-produced art," not that there's any mass-produced art to speak of at the Decatur craft market and artists' collective. But just in case, you're being watched ... by Mr. T (there's a shrine to him in the corner). And by at least one ofmore...
A sign inside HomeGrown cautions shoppers to "Just say no to mass-produced art," not that there's any mass-produced art to speak of at the Decatur craft market and artists' collective. But just in case, you're being watched ... by Mr. T (there's a shrine to him in the corner). And by at least one of the indie artists who sells their work there. Staffed by artists, the co-op-style boutique sells wall art, pottery, jewelry, photography, and housewares to buy as gifts for others or as gifts to yourself. There are always new artists setting up displays and always something new to see. And if there's an artist you particularly love, you can check out the schedule on HomeGrown's website and drop in to say "Hi" when they're working. Mr. T pities the fool who doesn't say "No" to mass-produced art. less...

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