Branch out to Forest Park’s attractions

A handful of hidden gems on the east side of Birmingham

SHOPPE brings plants, books and gifts to the Forest Park area.

Emma Owen
Blazer News Reporter

Southern dishes with a spin, furry friends and couches crafted for dreaming are a handful of elements found within the shops of Forest Park.  Located ten minutes from campus, this Birmingham neighborhood is buzzing with small businesses.  

If you need cuisine to fuel your next shopping trip in Forest Park, Little Savannah Bar and Grill owner, Clifton Holt said his restaurant offers fresh takes on southern classics. “We have a southern modern theme,” Holt said. “We take traditional meals and add a unique, modern twist.” Holt said Little Savannah’s attribute is the quality of the food being served. 

“[Our ingredients] are the freshest of the fresh,” Holt said. “We work with local farmers to serve fresh food, even our spearfish is caught fresh from the gulf every week.” Holt said that for the past few years, he has encouraged a casual dining experience. “[At Little Savannah’s] we aim for dining fine, not fine dining,” Holt said.  Holt said he takes pride in the unique craftmanship and design of the restaurant.  

“I made the tables by hand,” Holt said. “The pews that we use for seating were brought in from churches that were being remodeled.”  

Holt said having a casual and cozy environment is very important to him. 

“We designed the bar to allow people to be close to each other,” Holt said. Along with their southern cuisine, Little Savannah also features the work of local artists. 

“It is important for us to support other local businesses,” Holt Said.

Located just across the street from Little Savannah is Zoe’s in Forest Park. Deborah Fulton, owner of Zoe’s in Forest Park, opened doors twenty-one years ago, and said she loves the unique atmosphere in the store. 

“So many things make [Zoe’s] unique,” Fulton said. “Our cats, our music and the creative spirit in our clothes.” 

 Zoe’s carries a wide selection of women and men’s clothing. Fulton said she finds joy in the versatile fashion at Zoe’s. Joe Hardy, UAB Graduate and frequent shopper at Zoe’s said he enjoys the story that each item tells.  

“Every piece has a story,” Hardy said. “It is like a melting pot in here, with vintage pieces from all over the world.” 

While Zoe’s offers a wide variety of vintage clothing, the shop also carries formal wear, professional attire, costumes and day-to-day streetwear.

Dreamers Supply Company, found just behind Zoe’s, carries locally grown and hand-crafted products, ranging from honey to works of art.  Owner of Dreamers Supply Company, Kaitlin Slattery, said she puts quality first when choosing her store’s products.

 “It’s all about quality here,” Slattery said. “[Our products] consist of quality designs that are made to last.” 

Slattery said the atmosphere of the store is what contributes to its unique attributes. 

“[The store] is warm and inviting,” Slattery said. “I really care about the customers.” 

Slattery said that she enjoys assisting her young customers in pursuing their dreams. 

“If a customer has a dream that they want to follow, I aim to help them.” Slattery said. “The couch up front is always welcome for people who want to come in and dream.” 

Among the variety of handcrafted items at Dreamers Supply Company, there are also card games, natural skincare products, accessories and more.  

In 2017, SHOPPE opened their doors, bringing plants, books and gifts to Forest Park.  

SHOPPE employee, Terry Phillips, said he takes pride in the ambiance of the store.  

“There is a very friendly atmosphere [at SHOPPE],” Phillips said. 

Phillips said that SHOPPE’s owner contributes to the positive atmosphere in the store. 

“[The owner’s] eye for aesthetics and passion for plants makes our store unique,” Phillips said. Phillips said SHOPPE’s main customer base consists of college students and young adults. 

“More and more students are shopping for plants and flowers,” Phillips said. “Students are looking to brighten up their dorms and apartments.” 

Phillips said the plant nursery was built around a saying that is meaningful to each employee.

“We always say, live beautifully, have plants,” Phillips said.  

When finding the next edition to your plant family, you are likely to run across Cedar, the famous SHOPPE dog that enjoys greeting guests and posing for the camera, another element that Phillips said sets SHOPPE apart from other stores.

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