ice, the employees are happy to offer tips and suggestions. Even the most seasoned landscape architect can find something new at this wonderful store. After I bought my first house I wanted to make my window boxes vibrant. The patient people at the Garden Shop of Homewood took me step by step on picking out just the right plants for the type of light my house gets. My plants still look great! Katherine S.

Gus Mayer 225 Summit Blvd #700 205-870-3300 BIRMINGHAM

A Birmingham staple for over 30 years, Gus Mayer is an upscale, family-owned department store offering women s and men s apparel, cosmetics, jewelry, hand- bags and luxury brand-name shoes in an opulent environment. Recognized by Harper s Bazaar

as a Style Leader for Excellence in fashion merchandise and outstanding service. Gus Mayer has the best shoe de- partment in town and a cosmetic department that has products not carried anywhere else in Birming- ham. Doree W.

Hanna Antiques Mall 2424 7th Ave S 205-323-6036 BIRMINGHAM

Voted Best Antiques by The Birmingham News Readers Poll, Hanna Antiques offers friendly service and 120 dealers with 35 showcases in 25,000 square feet. Treasure hunters will discover a wide variety of rugs, silver, jewelry, linens, furniture, glassware, books and so much more. They have a large inventory of very unique and unusual items that you just can t find anywhere else. Pam A.

Highland Music 3000 Clairmont Ave 205-254-3288 BIRMINGHAM

You may have driven through the Highlands area and wondered, What s in that big pink building? The answer: one of the coolest music shops you ll ever see. Run by a crew of guitar geeks and music enthusiasts, they ve got a wide selection of new and used instruments and offer lessons from seasoned professionals. It s one thing to buy a guitar from

I bought my first guitar there.

BRITTANY F. on Fretted Instruments of Homewood