For those who like to shop at local stores, but don't like to run all over town to do it, there's an app for that.

About a dozen boutiques in the Charleston area have joined House Account, an iPhone app that allows local shops to showcase their goods to a regional audience. Users who download the app for free on the App Store can locate and "follow" nearby shops that post to House Account. Once the user follows a few businesses, a live feed is created on the main screen to view photos of new products.

It essentially works like the photo-oriented app Instagram, with added features that allow customers to communicate with merchants and buy directly from their phones. Local businesses on the app include Copper Penny, Sam's Closet, Berlins for Women and House of Sage.

Warren on King, a small women's apparel shop at 154 King St., joined House Account in June. "It's great because a lot of our customer base is tourists, and they can find products that we put up and call us, or they can comment on the picture," said Corinn Griesedieck, a store manager and buyer. "It's also good because they have a section where you can see statistics about how many likes you get, how many people view it."

Made to order

Charleston Donuts, a new gourmet donut and coffee shop, will open Friday in Wando Crossing Shopping Center in Mount Pleasant at 1495 U.S. Highway 17. The shop will not have ready-made pastries in glass cases, says owner Stephen Williams. Instead, the donuts will be made to order and served hot with the customer's choice of gourmet toppings, such as sea salt or pistachios. King Bean Coffee Roasters is supplying the coffee for the espresso and cappuccino drinks.


Toffino's Italian Bakery, Deli & Pizza has leased a 1,374-square-foot restaurant space at Wymberly Crossing, a retail center at the entrance of RiverTowne subdivision along S.C. Highway 41 in Mount Pleasant. It will be the second location for the Myrtle Beach-based Italian deli. Toffino's expects to open by the end of the summer.