The US had Five and Dime shops, and now Dollar Stores, but things are a bit pricier in New Zealand, so we have the $2 Shop.
The $2 Shop sells everything for $2 (and yes, there are $2 coins in NZ), and some things are 2 for $2.
The $2 Shop has a bit of everything, from crafting supplies to stationary to wrapping paper to hardware to jewellery to makeup to household goods. So it’s not a bad place to look if you want something and aren’t sure where to buy it (which happened to me a lot when I first moved to NZ).
A little bit of everything. And I DIDN’T take this picture! (see below for why)
Some of the stuff at the $2 Shop is pretty amazing in it’s own right, like gilded peacock feathers, or an amazingly good deal, like the wide array of attractive drawer pulls. Considering that drawer pulls start at $8 each at every other shop, $2 is an great bargain if you want to quickly update a dresser.
$2 drawer pulls on a rimu dresser I refinished.
First, the $2 Shop won’t let you take photographs in the store. Not even for review purposes. I’m not sure what they are afraid of, it’s not like someone is going to use it to find out what they charge for stuff and beat their prices (tee hee, get it? get it?), nor are they such a juicy target for a large scale robbery that anyone would be scoping out the premises. They can’t be concerned about knock-offs of their plastic tiki souvenirs – they are already 2 for $2 so they can’t get any cheaper!
Whatever the reason, I wasn’t able to take any images in the store. Which is bad. And dumb. You should write them and tell them how bad and dumb this policy is.
The other main bads are that 1) you are buying cheap plastic crap made in China under questionable conditions 2) who knows exactly what goes into the cheap plastic crap and how much lead is in the paint and 3) the $2 Shop is a madhouse around Christmas, Halloween etc with everyone buying cheap plastic crap for the holidays.
Well, unfortunately I wasn’t able to take pictures of some of the uglier items, because I sure wasn’t going to buy anything just to take a picture of it!
But rest assured that the $2 Shop has a wide variety of seriously ugly. And some not so ugly. But a lot of ugly. Some of it amusingly so.
These are kind of ugly. And kind of cool. Whimsicle effery ugly-cool.
There are all sorts of fun things that you could use for costuming in the $2 shop, from the aforementioned gilded peacock feathers, to beads and ribbons and trims and faux flowers and cheap straw and felt hats to use as bases. Some of the things they have are a bit surprising and inexplicable, and some of them change all the time.
Who knows what these little birds and birds nest were intended to be:
I’m going to use them in 18th c hairstyles, or to trim hats. I think the owl is too cute!
And of course, there is lots of stuff that isn’t so obviously costume-y that could be used, from items in the hardware section (how many of you have ended up using lengths of chain on Elizabethan costume? Come on, fess up now!), to little figurines that could be pulled apart for jewellery.
The randomly really exciting and then totally crappy:
I found scalloped craft scissors at the $2 Shop! I’d been looking for them forever, but Spotlight stopped carrying them, and the local scrapbooking store says they are out of fashion.
I was so excited.
Yeah. The scissors are more than a little bit crap. Once opened, they don’t close. I need to pony up and order a good pair off the internet.
, a necessary evil. More fun than Spotlight though, and a better buy for your (2) dollar.
Also, the $2 Shop has one of the worlds stickiest, and thus most irritating, jingles. My sister visited NZ over 3 years ago and can still sing it.
I’ll admit to reading the Sherlock Holmes books a number of times as a kid, though I always found the idea of a mind completely ruled by science and calculations and unswayed by emotions rather unappealing. Still, Mr Dreamy wanted to see the new Sherlock Holmes movie, so off we went.
I laughed out loud once. I don’t remember what the joke was, but it must have been good.
The men’s clothes are gorgeous. Suitably historical, but with an appealing twist that makes you want to run out and dress your guy in tweed and corduroy from head to toe. And not a plaid tweed coat in sight!
Love that wide-wale corduroy jacket!
The film is clunky and awkward, lurching from one situation to the next. The final ‘solution’ to the mystery is based on the clues of a murder that Holmes could not have known anything about according to the logical and chronological flow of the film.
The whole story revolves around Holmes’ much speculated upon relationship with Irene Adler. Sadly, Rachael McAdam, much as I usually love her, is completely miscast as Adler. She is too young, too sweet, too soft and altogether implausible. There isn’t a shred of chemistry between her and Holmes.
To add insult to injury, McAdam’s costumes are a million times more awful than the the men’s clothes are good. McAdam’s ensembles are satin from head to toe (satin? During the day?), ill cut, and unflattering.
Ugh. Could they have at least ironed out the ill fitting wrinkles in photoshop?
I got the sense that the costume designer was chosen for her ability to do menswear, and wasn’t as comfortable with feminine attire, so overcompensated with shiny fabrics and frills.
Unfortunately, there aren’t many pictures of McAdam’s costumes online yet. She does wear one amazing coat based on a Worth evening coat, but alas, even that is ruined because she wears it as daytime streetwear.
Wait for it to come out on DVD. And hope the sequel is better.
And yes, there will be a sequel. The ending didn’t so much leave it open for one as blast away the door and most of all four walls of the ‘sequel’ room with TNT, just in case the audience couldn’t take a hint.
What it is:
The Rijksmuseum publication on the collections of the wealthy Six family of Amsterdam
To-die-for, drool worthy garments with great dating and provenance. It isn’t often that you get to see an almost pristine 1759 wedding dress, or even an 1812 wedding dress, especially where the bride’s names and history are known.
1759 wedding gown
Detail of the embroidery on the 1759 wedding dress
The reverse of the embroidery
1812 wedding gown
Either the writer just isn’t a great writer, or the book has been translated into English with technically accurate but moderately obfuscating results. All of the parts are correct, but somehow the sum is hard to read and doesn’t make much sense.
Also, the book is all about the Six family (who had various other last names as well), and some of the kids were named Nine. No, I’m not kidding. I’m sure these are perfectly ordinary and acceptable names in Amsterdam, but I spent some time reading bits of the book trying to figure out who the six [different] families were, and why a nine year old had a wedding dress.
To make the name confusion worse, I’m fairly certain the same people are referred to by different names throughout the book (pet names, full names, married names, initials), so I had to keep referring to the family tree, and I’m still not sure I am clear on who wore what when.
Finally, the images of the garments are too artistic. Garments from different periods are elegantly draped together, or photographed in soft focus, which is great if you want a pretty picture, but not fab for those of us who want to study the garment.
Pretty please can I see those stays right side up or on a mannequin!?!
1835 wedding gown in soft focus. Grrrr….
Very artistic, but hard to tell what the rest of the dress looks like!
The really odd, what in the Buggrit Millennium Hand and Shrimp Blazes is going on here?
There are random unclothed people in all (OK, most) of the images. Yes, you read that right. Beautiful historic costumes and people in the altogether. Not even attractive clothes-less people: ordinary wrinkled undressed people.
Don’t believe me?
Well: here you go:
And when there aren’t sky-cladders, there are unattractive dogs, or laptops.
I really hope that images is photoshopped and the dog and costume were never in the same proximity!
My inner museum professional is having serious issues with this picture!
The worst part is, there is no indication why anyone thought it was a good idea to have au natural models* interacting with the costumes. What does it mean? I suppose it is ummm…memorable. You aren’t likely to forget the dress that was framed by wrinkled old bums.
*BTW, did you notice how I cleverly managed to discuss all these images without ever once using any of the N words? Uh-huh. Booyah!