Best Of :: Shopping & Services
The new Half Price Books location on Northwest Highway, across the street from their older, smaller location, is the mecca of cut-rate book buying. If you don't know what you want, you're bound to find 10 other books you didn't think of before. The music and arts sections are especially edifying, if not comprehensive, and they also boast a solid used-CD and LP inventory. If war is your thing, they have rows of Civil War and World War II books. You like mysteries? They've got tons of those. Political nonfiction your bag? It, too, has its own special section. A national company born in Dallas, Half Price Books should be commended for its strong continuing commitment here.
The glitzy black-and-white dcor is a grand setting for the two walls piled high with an overwhelming array of perfumes. Don't go looking for something as mundane as White Shoulders; this is the place to pick up Jean-Paul Gaultier's new perfume encased in a snow globe with, of course, gold snow. Vivian Westwood's Boudoir might be the ticket if the Versace Blonde thing doesn't work for you.
Hallmark Cards probably thinks it has secured coolness with Fresh Ink, its new line of bizarre and unconventional cards similar to the ones independent gift and bookstores have sold for years. In this realm, however, if you care to send the very best, Hallmark Gold Crown Stores are not your destinations. Independent cardmakers are still making the most stylish and funky cards around, and Gifted in Deep Ellum offers a great selection from several designers. From cards with "Thank You" spelled in neon letters to minimalist ones with thick, grainy paper and black-and-white photos, Gifted carries everything from the simply sublime to the wonderfully wacky.
No matter what the occasion, you can find a card depicting a young, bare, muscled torso at Nuvo. We don't mean to say that all their of cards are for gay men (or, for that matter, straight women with an aggressive appreciation of the male form). Some of them are all pecs and butts, but there are plenty for the straight shopper, including several lines of one-of-a-kind hand-printed art cards that tell someone that you not only care, but that you're the kind of person who'll spend $7 on a card.
A Dallas institution, Dallas Costume Shoppe is the place to go if you're in need of an outfit for that gala costume ball or a Halloween bash. Producing a stage play? They can outfit the entire cast. Period costumes from as far back as Shakespeare and Greek mythology days, Roaring Twenties--you name it. If they don't have the costume you're looking for, you might reconsider your search, or take up sewing.Texas Costume (pictured below) is a theatrical supply company with clients across the country. They rent costumes to the general public as well as professionals and TV types. They sell and rent technical supplies, wigs, and make-up, but costumes can be rented only. Time periods of the costumes vary from biblical to the '70s. Costumes range from $59.95 to $79.95 for three days. And on Halloween, they'll hook you up. They have thousands of items, so if you want to be it, then damn it, they have it.
If you get off on garage sales, you'll love this place. It's large, dusty, and hot, but treasures can be found at almost give-away prices. Just plan on digging and browsing. From household appliances and furniture to costume and antique jewelry to a stuffed animal barrel where a quarter buys your choice, a visit to Sarah's is a little like a scavenger hunt for grownups. If you don't find what you're looking for, don't give up. It just might be there the next time you visit.
This longtime establishment has been a favorite with art collectors and galleries for years. Its clientele (including Rita Clements, Lupe Murchison, the Edith Baker Gallery, and Dallas' Office of Cultural Affairs) ranges from serious collectors who need to preserve their expensive treasures to everyday customers who treat their children's art like original masterpieces. No matter what the customer request, Frame Masters can fill the need. What makes them such a hit with the society set is their attention to detail and the entire staff's excellent taste. If you have no idea how to frame something, owner Terry Nelson and his staff can always provide you with alternatives that showcase your art and pictures in the best of borders. The real selling point to this shop is its competitive pricing. You can consistently get a better deal on your framing needs compared with equally tony shops. They even beat some of the lower-end mass-market frame outlets.