Pound shops are one of the best things about this fair nation of ours. Whether the general 99p 'emporium' next to a run-down Chicken Cottage, or the slightly more upscale Poundland, these places have made my life infinitely better.
They are also the greatest gift I could ever bestow on anyone. My ex-boyfriend/fremeny, who is grudgingly, one of the smartest people I know (and had also never been to Primark, can you believe?), kept picking things up and asking 'how much is this?'. It took him about five minutes to grasp the concept.
My aunt who previously had nothing but disdain for Pound shops, proclaiming them to be 'full of old tat', left after her first ever visit with £52 worth of stuff, which kind of defeated the purpose, but I definitely admired her spirit.
A girl I was on a course with once came to Poundland with me after lunch and basically couldn't stay still, flitting between aisles like someone possessed.
I later found out it wasn't just enthusiasm that caused her restlessness, when she waved me over to her place in line, with a tube of Polish Canesten. So, something for everyone!
You can get insane stuff, if you're not too fussed about looking around. And as I'm cheap and persistently broke (a winning combination), I spend a lot of time in these places. Here's some of the coolest stuff I regularly/have found in Pound stores:
BooksI don't buy paperbacks anymore because I have a Kindle, but I love coffee table books. The above are, in order, a limited edition Bill Amberg leather bound copy of The Great Gatsby, The Cheap Date Guide to Style, which is honestly one of the best books on fashion I have ever read, its by Bay Garnett who's worked on and off at Vogue forever, and 'The Heiress Diary' by Paris Hilton, obv.
Foundation sponges/Rolling (Blotting) paper/MascaraPoundland foundation sponges are great. They come in cute shapes and there are these small rectangular ones that are perfect for blending. As mentioned in Phoebe's 'slutty life skills' piece, I use rolling papers as cheap, quick blotting films when I've run out of the Mac ones I SWEAR by.
(Only one pictured)
My Skeleton glovesI love these. I got them at Halloween in the children's costume section. The other side is black and the skeleton bit is glow in the dark! A girl once asked if they were Lucien Pellat Finet. In my head, I did a victory jig.
I am also not ashamed to say I once found (and bought) three pairs of Disney princess ankle socks. I strolled into my Reformer Pilates class wearing the 'Jasmine' pair that day, with an unfettered sense of pride.
Greeting cardsMy mum raised me on that hippie BS 'always be polite to everyone', so I send a lot of 'thank you' and 'congratulations' cards. Not everyone is worth breaking out the Smythson note cards for (seriously, I'm glad your kid got baptized and everything, but not that glad), so I buy in bulk as needed.
So what do you guys stock up on at Pound/dollar stores? What was your greatest find? Or do you avoid them altogether? Once I saw a Playboy mug and I didn't have any change….it remains one of my biggest regrets. Tell me about your bargains!