The Ink Penn

Not long ago, I set out to write a column about my favorite local shops and started with this introduction:

Do you have favorite Dunwoody haunts? I’m a creature of habit. When I find a shop I like with friendly folks who treat me well plus topnotch merchandise and service, then I’m theirs for life.

Before I knew it, I’d written an entire piece on a local grocery with no space left for my other go-to spots. I have so many I’m hooked on; it’s hard to do them justice in one column. Let’s see how far I get this time.

I don’t visit often, but I’m hooked on Zukerino Pastry Shop. I discovered it after reading an article in The Crier, and I only allow myself to visit when I’m cooking dinner for guests. Then I grab a mixture of Melomakarona (honey cookies) and Kourabiedes (butter cookies with almonds).

More frequently, I hit Consigning Women. I’m bound to find something there, whether it’s tops, dresses, skirts, purses, or shoes. I still bemoan the loss of Lord & Taylor’s, where I never failed to find the perfect dress, but Consigning Women is now my go-to.

Naturally, Southern Comfort is my first stop for furniture, rugs, lamps, and home décor, and I return there to consign the same.

Nancy’s in the Shops of Dunwoody is high on my list for fun, fashionable clothes and one of a kind jewelry finds. The ladies at Nancy’s are incredibly attentive and helpful. Under the Pecan Tree is almost next door, so a visit to Nancy’s means a trip to this neighborhood gift shop to scan tea towels, jewelry, serving pieces and more.

Just down Chamblee-Dunwoody Road is the Enchanted Forest, also a purveyor of unique gifts. The latest item I’m hooked on is Mangiacotti scented spray sanitizer in the lavender scent, and I see Mangiacotti body wash and lotion in my future.

The two places I visit monthly are J. Stokes Salon and Angela Michael Skincare & Spa. At J. Stokes, I see Julie, whom I routinely text to say that yet another stranger has complimented me on my hairstyle.

Next door, I see Angela for a microderm treatment or whatever she recommends. And I try to see Cindy as frequently for a deep tissue massage. I feel as though I’m part of the family as I chat with LeeAnne and Mollie and browse the skincare products and gift selection.

For jewelry, Lauderhill’s Fine Jewelry and Camelot Jewelers are both favorites. Lauderhill’s holds a special place in my heart because they helped replace my jewelry when our home was burglarized years ago. As for Camelot, when I ducked into a shop at the mall recently to have my watch battery replaced, I had a rude reminder as to why I love Camelot. There, I get a smile, sometimes a hug, rather than a grumpy response to my request. I also have a favorite piece of garnet jewelry from each of these shops.

My go-to for printing, signs, and anything office-oriented—the place where Alex, Rene, Karen, and Adam always greet me with a smile—is SOHO.

A column about my favorite places wouldn’t be complete without mentioning Crema, where I connect with my friends over coffee. I still haven’t hit every one of my favorites, but I’d say having too many fantastic shops to squeeze into one column is a good problem to have.

PS. Lord Banjo and I will be celebrating Halloween at the Mansell Crossing Hallmark Shop this Saturday, noon – 2 pm. Come in costume for a photo op with the Royal Pooch and the Royal Mum, both dressed in their royal robes.

Kathy is a Sandy Springs resident. Find her books, “Lord Banjo the Royal Pooch” and “The Ink Penn: Celebrating the Magic in the Everyday,” at the Enchanted Forest, Amy’s Hallmark at the Forum and Mansell Crossing, and on Amazon. Contact her at inkpenn119@gmail.com, and follow her on Facebook, www.facebook.com/KathyManosPennAuthor/.

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