Best Of :: Shopping & Services
Need an affordable vintage camera strap to replace the awful stock strap that came with your first D-SLR? Or maybe that old 35mm camera that someone found in the attic needs a lens cap? Still need 35mm film or some photo paper to develop in the darkroom? Don's Photo Equipment started selling new and used photographic equipment to Dallas professionals and hobbyists about 15 years ago, and as the analog industry went digital, the shop has managed to keep its feet firmly planted in both worlds. Accessibly located in the heart of Dallas' Design District near downtown, Don's employees will happily talk shop with you all day even if you never spend a dime (whereas the competitor nearby would rather cut the conversation short and end the transaction). Don's covers all a photographer's basic needs from camera bodies and lenses to studio lighting and darkroom equipment to photo albums and killer vintage camera straps. And Don's buys used photo gear from individuals and estates. So, before tossing that old 35mm camera out, please, take it by Don's.
Look, we know what you're thinking. Jos. A. Bank's a pretty square choice for the Dallas Observer, right? Yeah, well, listen up, sunshine. You want a T-shirt with the logo of your favorite band or some retro consignment-shop duds, keep reading. We got plenty of those. But in the current reality, the name of the game is dress for success — or, if not success, at least a J-O-B. And for that, J-O-S has a wide selection of good quality men's clothing at reasonable prices. Suits, sport coats, polos, business casual and slacks (that's grown-up speak for "pants") make it possible for you to put together a set of work clothes that don't necessarily leave you looking like your dad (though if Dad's a pastel-loving golfer, he'd be right at home here). We know you don't want to put on a damn tie, but ask yourself this: Would you really rather move back in with Dad?
Stepping foot in this retail shop-meets-workspace is instantly calming. It soothes that ache in your brain, that tiny region in the back that fears everything's already been done. The designs range from organic-inspired and architectural shapes to highly detailed visual stories, and all are refreshingly inventive. You see the pride of ownership that is taken at each step of frank's process. The unique identity created for every piece is one you want to spend time with, preferably at home, in front of your mirror, draped in the stuff until you feel like a damn modern princess. Of course, in this fantasy you would own it all: the pendant cast from a scavenged animal tooth; the earring featuring reappropriated figures from toy train sets, and more giant gold rings than your phalanges can physically support. Until that glorious day comes, grow your collection one gorgeous piece at a time.
For as long as we can remember, it's been just too damn difficult for a girl (or boy) to find quality nipple pasties, fascinators, corsets, garters and enormous flowered hair ornaments in this town. All that changed with the opening last fall of Dallas PinUp, a Deep Ellum spot catering to the burlesque-oriented and the people who love them. In addition to lingerie worth wearing onstage, they have an ever-changing variety of beautiful, vintage-inspired dresses and cosmetics. The proprietresses also run portraiture company Through the Looking Glass Studio from the shop, which specializes in pin-up-style photography (they'll even do your hair and makeup first). For littler shoppers, they now carry adorable (non-sexy) dresses and rompers from Three Yellow Starfish. Even men don't have to feel left out — the shop carries Lucky 13 hair products, all the better for creating a slick rockabilly pompadour. It'll look great with your new pasties, guys, we promise.
All the discussion in the news of face-eating earlier this year had us giving some thought to disaster preparedness, namely how we can prepare ourselves to kill the ever-living shit out of some zombies. After some intensive intra-staff discussion, we've determined that Dick's is the finest anti-zombie outfitter there is. "Just go to a gun store, idiot!" you say, to which we'll politely have to tell you that you, sir or madam, are the real idiot here. Sure, Dick's has guns and ammo, and you can stock up on some of those. But you'll also want yourself a good baseball bat for when the bullets run out, plus maybe a nice heavy golf club. Sturdy running shoes are also a must, naturally. Mark our words: The undead hordes will inevitably turn up in Texas. Don't get caught empty-handed.
So you need a leather jock strap. Or maybe it's a nice, well-made harness you're after, or possibly a collar for the special submissive in your life. Leather Masters has all things leather and latex for the discerning BDSM-er, plus all the rings, stretchers, straps, sheaths and toys your love life has been crying out for. The Deep Ellum shop (they also have a location in San Jose, California) can also custom-make an outfit, if your imagination is ranging even further than what they have in stock.