Neighborhood Plant Sale Saturday!

24 Feb

Greenscape will celebrate twenty five years of providing quality plant material to Jacksonvillians as their Flowering Tree Sale gets underway at 7a.m. on Saturday morning.

This annual event provides deeply discounted trees to the public and serves as a fundraiser for Greenscape of Jacksonville, the local non-profit tree planting volunteer organization. Be sure to come early as past years have been very successful and often sell out within a couple of hours! The location of the sale is 3100 Emerson Street (Parking lot at the intersection of Philips Highway and Emerson Street). By Mayoral Proclamation, the Flowering Tree Sale is Jacksonville’s official Arbor Day.

Thousands of trees and shrubs will be presented for sale at deeply discounted prices. A wide variety of species are usually offered, from Japanese Magnolias to Knock Out Roses. Proceeds from the Sale support tree planting programs for Greenscape in Jacksonville. ***Quantities of some items are limited***  CASH or CHECK only

As in the past, representatives from the Division of Forestry, tree growers, arborists, the Duval County Master Gardener Program, JEA Forestry and the American Society of Landscape Architects will be on hand to answer questions and assist in your selections.

DATE: Saturday, February 25, 2012
TIME: 7:00 a.m.
PRICE: Admission is free, tree prices will be marked. Method of payment – cash or check only.
LOCATION: Parking lot at the intersection of Philips Highway and Emerson St.


‘Tis the Season for One of Each Gifts

15 Dec

One of Each Gifts in historic 5 Points

The moment you step inside One of Each Gifts, you know the holiday shopping season is in full swing. A large decorated Christmas tree greets you and an entire back wall is dedicated to a wide range of sparkling holiday ornaments. The sweet scents of scented-reed diffusers and Tyler candles fill the air while soft music plays in the background. Owner Jonathan Brown is already cheerfully helping several customers as one shopper browses jewelry racks while another checks out his holiday cards and stationery offerings. A third customer asks him for free gift-wrapping of her purchases of Thymes fine English soaps and lotions for later pick-up. The smiling, dynamic owner clearly enjoys working with his customers and retail gifts are in his blood as his mother ran another local gift shop for years. Mr. Brown notes that his mother, who recently turned 89, just retired after providing years of “good insight on buying for the shop” and serving as the store’s premier gift wrapper.

The busy gift boutique has been in operation for about 8½ years, with an initial shop at the corner of Park and King Streets. Mr. Brown’s successful venture outgrew that space and he moved his store to Five Points about four years ago. As an Avondale resident, he wanted to keep his shop close to home and likes the “village environment of Five Points, which is more like an old-fashioned downtown with lots of foot traffic” and where friendly neighborhood shop owners help each other out. Many years ago, his feisty mother once chained herself along with others across May Street to block the bulldozing of brick cobblestones to help the area retain some of its historic charm.

Jonathan Brown, owner, One of Each Gifts

The Jacksonville native previously ran another retail store and restaurant before opening his own gift shop because he felt “there was an unmet need in the neighborhood.” With a wealth of business experience, Mr. Brown advises new entrepreneurs “to keep it simple” and “follow your bliss” in deciding what business to start. He warns enthusiastic new owners “not to spread themselves too thin” but to add on later as your business progresses. He also thinks it’s important to “have fun and have a good sense of humor, and laugh it off or else go nutty.”

In this challenging economy, the retailer thinks his “value-oriented gifts” which offer good quality items at reasonable prices will bring in shoppers. This season, he has found that people are buying lots of holiday ornaments and scented candles for friends and co-workers, especially scented “Diva” candle jars. Costume jewelry has also been a very popular gift choice. As the weather begins to cool down, colorful Pashmina scarves and shawls are also in demand. For men, he has seen decorative golf balls and humorous novelty gums becoming favorite stocking stuffers. After the holiday season, he advises bargain-hunters to watch for those after-Christmas sales as his shop regularly turns over its stock and décor to suit every season and major holiday.

So stop by One of Each Gifts, 1026 Park Street, 904-389-9360, right next to the new SunRay Cinema at the Five Points Theatre, with “gifts so unique you’ll want one of each!”

We’ve moved

28 Feb

to  Come on over!

Tom’s Shoes and Seasonal Twists at OLIVE in San Marco

22 Feb

Certainly if you are a female shopper in San Marco you’ve explored Olive.  As shops or boutiques go, this is a store that one definitely explores.

That’s because Olive carries all sorts of great things, from lovely clothing, to a large selection of unique and on-trend accessories, to fine lingerie; a diverse selection of things for the home…yours, or somebody else’s.  Whether you need a gift or are just shopping, it’s hard to go into Olive and leave there empty-handed.  There is so much to look at.  If you can restrain yourself from buying this lovely thing, or that, Olive is a great place for browsing.  (Browsing is fine, of course, but we want to support our merchants, not just admire them!)

Items for spring are everywhere in Olive now.  Along with the brighter colors in clothing that spring evokes, Olive has brought in Tom’s Shoes as a new line.

Tom's are known the world over for confort and consciousness.

Do you know about Tom’s?  First of all, Tom’s are cool and comfortable shoes, that are both in the moment and styled eco-friendly.  Not only are they stylish and comfy, but Tom’s Shoes is a for-profit company that donates one pair of shoes for every pair bought, to a child in need, in another country, elsewhere.  And now you can pick up your own pair from your own San Marco distributor of Tom’s, Olive!

Baubles and bangles of all sorts await you.

Olive’s accessories selection is vast, and alluring. The trendiest bracelets and earrings, lovely necklaces; everything a woman could want to, because there is an accessory piece to fit with whatever style she prefers.

Olive has created an inviting space, a home-like interior, as their selection of home accessories are artfully arranged to catch your eye and make you feel like you’re browsing in a really cool house. Every great design item (the perfect place to pick up wedding, bridal shower,or hostess gift, too) can leave with you and grace your home.

Housewares & home decor are new additions to the offerings at Olive.

Owner Heather Wingard is off to New York next week, to order the latest in Fall fashion for Olive. She stays ahead of the trends, always watching the fashion horizon for clothing that suits the stylish Jacksonville shopper. At the end of New York Fashion Week, it’s ‘market time’, when buyers from the best shops everywhere arrive in New York to order their selection for the next season’s offerings. But now, Olive is fresh and bright with spring offerings, and Heather tells us that coral is going to feature strong in spring colors this season.

With the weather warming and the daylight hours lengthening, everyone’s ready for spring. So pop into Olive for burst of spring.

Clothing and accessories at Olive, with a twist!

And don’t forget: Olive is the place for Tom’s Shoes, now, too!

~Contributed by Jeannie Greenwald of

A Little Downtown History and Future-Perdue Office Interiors

7 Feb

Perdue Office Interiors, today

The landscape of downtown Jacksonville is changing. With many projects ongoing or upcoming to change the face of downtown, the resurgence is near. Perdue Office Interiors, a fixture in Jacksonville since 1916, was determined to help revitalize the business community downtown and relocated in 2009 to the corner of Main and Forsyth Street.

Woolworth, 1910

Betty Maid, 1950s

Originally located off of Bay Street, Perdue opened its doors in 1916 and remained downtown before relocating to the Southside over 20 years ago. That same year, Woolworth’s opened up their “five and dime” store several blocks away at Forsyth and Main. For years, that intersection was the central core of a thriving downtown community. Over the years, the Woolworth building was home to many businesses, including a Betty Maid retail store in the 1950’s, and remained at the center of one of downtown’s most pedestrian friendly areas.  After American Heritage Life left in the 1990’s, the building remained vacant for 10 years.

Perdue has a reputation for looking forward, and that view was long term. Downtown was ultimately the place to be, especially with the highly concentrated office space and no office furniture dealers downtown. Clients or customers that might never make it downtown would now have a reason to make the trip. That year, Perdue decided on the Woolworth building and began renovations. With such a historic building, a modern interior seemed an interesting juxtaposition. The space would serve as a “working showroom”, allowing customers to see the furniture being sold in use. An open, loft style feel was created and conceptualized, and Perdue moved in to the space in late October, 2009. A new, modern logo, eye-catching signage,  and shortening of the name “Perdue Office Interiors” to “Perdue, Inc.” followed suit.

Today, back in the area where the company first began, Perdue is a downtown fixture and is helping to revive a once thriving corner of Jacksonville. In addition to client meetings, holiday parties, and architecture and design events, Perdue is an Art Walk venue. A local artist is given a showroom wall, which is changed every month, with Art Walk being an opportunity to showcase local talent.

-Melissa Carvalho

Photos: Ken McCray

Woodside Lane: Reclaiming Local Treasure

4 Feb

Woodside Lane in the San Marco Square

If you haven’t yet made a stop into Woodside Lane Grainmill Art, a storefront on the Square for about six months, it’s well worth your time for a look-see.  With so much commitment to ‘going local’ here in San Marco and the greater Jacksonville area, Woodside Lane’s beautifully handcrafted tables couldn’t be more ‘local’.

Kevin Byrnes, a master craftsman with more than thirty years of experience and owner of Woodside Lane, obtained reclaimed wood from an old Jacksonville grain mill on West Beaver Street.    The mill was built in the 1940s of longleaf pine, and was being demolished.  When Kevin saw the old, heavy, solid wooden mill, he knew at once it was constructed from a virgin stand of longleaf pine.  Longleaf pine is from the Southeast, and these virgin stands were of trees that were over 100 years old.  Mature longleaf pine gives a beautiful grain, texture, and resin that’s hard to find in today’s pines, because now they’re harvested much earlier in their life span.  They simply do not display  the full and hearty texture that the wood from older pines yielded.

Enter Kevin Byrnes and the imminent demolition of the old mill.  The mill was a massive fortress that processed corn, serving the dairy industry in the northeast Florida region.  When the dairy industry died, so did the need for the grain. The property changed hands, and finally, the mill was scheduled to be torn down.  The artist in him desired to obtain as much of that wood as he could, knowing he could create things of beauty from it.  And so he did.

He loves that this wood has story; the nail marks and dents,  texture and resin from its days as a Jacksonville grain mill.  He loves that this wood is strong: it processed heavy grain, daily, for decades.  He loves that this wood is locally sourced. And he loves to refinish this wood with his own hands, creating custom tables for families who appreciate a table with history, and who’ll imbue it then, with history of their own.

These tables are beautifully displayed inside Woodside Lane, on the Square, next to the San Marco Movie Theatre.  Kevin greets customers there, and helps them to design the table that’s just right for their home, their family.  The textures and markings of the wood are  beautifully rendered, after Kevin has prepared them for final construction. Customers understand that the distressed appearance comes from the fact the this is reclaimed wood and not artificially “distressed” in a factory somewhere else.  This is local; authentic.  A local grain mill’s mighty and beautiful wood is in the masterful hands of a local craftsman, who is now making tables of beauty for local families.

When you come into the shop you’ll envision one of these tables in your home.  They are artfully presented; the store has a gallery-like vibe.

A Woodside Lane table featured on the Taverna patio.

You may work directly with Kevin to create a custom table, or purchase one  he already finished; the store has several to choose from today.

San Marco’s Taverna restaurant has one of Kevin’s reclaimed wood tables, and it’s part of their  covered, outdoor dining area.  If you’d like to know what it feels like to gather around such a table, hit Taverna and ask for seating at the long, rectangular table just outside the restaurant window. Their heat lamps will warm you if it’s a chilly evening. You really can’t go wrong.  A great meal from a great local restaurant, served atop a hand-crafted table from locally reclaimed wood.

Gallery table display

Then go on down the street to Woodside Lane, and talk with Kevin Byrnes about his creating something of beauty for you.

Let’s not keep this local treasure a secret. Pass the word to people you know who appreciate things like reclaimed wood and local history and meaning in their homes. Nearly every design magazine features interiors that contain such unique pieces as part of a home’s furnishings.  This is just too great a story not to be shared!

~Jeanne Greenwald

Enjoy artistic dining at The Tree Cup Cafe

3 Feb

“Dining is a great artistic opportunity.”

That’s the headline of the menu at The Tree Cup Café, the bright and airy little eatery located in the Cummer Museum.  We all know and love the museum, but did you know you can eat lunch or enjoy a spot of tea in the café even if you’re not visiting the museum’s galleries?  The Tree Cup runs along the front of the museum and its floor-to-ceiling windows not only let in lots of light but also provide a view of Riverside Ave and some of the beautiful oaks on the Cummer property.

The select menu is written on a chalkboarded wall behind the little window where you place your order.  For lunch, the Tree Cup offers snacks and sandwiches and salads and soups catered by Chef’s Garden.  The menu changes often, but all the options are tasty.  You might find lobster bisque, a grilled chicken salad, a Virginia ham panino, or an oven-roasted turkey panino with brie, pancetta and pesto aioli.  Portions are ample and nothing is over $10.  The café serves fair trade, organic coffee and lots of specialty teas in pretty packaging.  Don’t miss out on a pastry or a slice of cake or pie to go with your espresso or cup of tea.

The Tree Cup Café is open every day for lunch and on Tuesday until 9pm.  Enjoy a pleasant stroll down shady Riverside Avenue and grab lunch and some tea or coffee in a perfectly sophisticated, relaxing and artsy spot!

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