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Wednesday, October 20, 2021

Campus shopping guide

Memorial Union (MU) visitors walk past a treasure trove of school supplies, books, lotions, sunglasses and literally hundreds of other products every day as they peruse the halls. And you know you’ve been tempted to do a little shopping. Let The Aggie guide you in your browsing as we test the quality of these products… so you don’t have to.

Mace Palomino Scarves

We all know that the scarf is the ultimate winter accessory, making an entirely new outfit with one little piece of clothing that can also provide a lot of warmth.

While scarves can be expensive, fear not, because you are in luck. Outside the MU, one can find a variety of different types of scarves of nearly every length, pattern, color and fabric imaginable.

Mace Palomino, who works part-time at UC Davis, sells products including scarves, ponchos, bags, bracelets and many other fashionable items, all at wildly reasonable prices.

I, however, went for the scarves — two, in fact. I had my eye on a dark ruby-red one; it was longer with a thick knit, complete with tassels on the ends that looked both warm and very stylish.

Upon purchase, however, I was informed that purchasing one was $10, but purchasing two was a total of $15. How could I pass that up? Another handmade scarf for another five bucks!

I was sold.

The second scarf I picked out was a short black one in which the maker had used fishing line woven into the edges to give this piece a ruffled look. It doesn’t lay flat, so it adds some dimension to my outfits. Plus, black is an all-important color in any wardrobe; it matches nearly anything.

Both products have been wonderful. I wear them all of the time, the red proving to be one of my most popular scarves in my closet! I can throw it on top of my gray Aggie sweatshirts and show my UC Davis pride with a little bit of flair.

However, if you are a little less daring, there are fleece scarves in patterns that aren’t quite so bold, as well as scarves that are Aggie blue, or whatever color you are searching for.

Also worth mentioning is the fantastic quality and feel of the unique items, which are made by hand. Neither scarf has snagged or ripped and both still look like new.

If you have a chance, and just a couple of dollars to spend to update your wardrobe and keep warm on another blustery Davis day, look no further than Palomino and his various merchandises outside the MU. His schedule is inconsistent, but keep your eyes open — you don’t want to miss this fashion haul!

UC Davis Bookstore “Bend-A-Bottle”

As UC Davis students, we have the innate desire to go green by reducing, reusing and recycling, even if it is a bit inconvenient.

However, the Bookstore now sells a product, the “Bend-A-Bottle,” that helps the environment while also being convenient.

Common knowledge for any environment-saver is the fact that reusable water bottles are the easiest way to prevent the waste of plastic. However, when empty, they are still bulky and heavy to carry around on your back. Now, a pouch is available at the MU for $4.95 (plus tax) that eliminates this problem.

This nifty water bottle replacement comes in multiple colors, including Aggie blue (which is the one I selected), and each is labeled “UC Davis Aggies.”

One will find that this pouch is very handy, as it holds up to 16 ounces and takes up very little space, even when full.

Once you have finished your water, this water container can be rolled, folded up or just flattened to take up minimal space in your backpack or purse. It also comes with a clip on the side to attach to the outside of a bag or even a bicycle.

This product, while handy and useful, does have flaws. The first thing that I noticed was that after only one use, the letters on the front were already wearing off. Also, the bottle is a tad difficult to drink from because it is flimsy material. It will stand, but after fighting it for a minute or so.

The biggest problem with the bottle was that it leaked. I left it in my purse overnight and when I went to use it the following day, the cap had come unscrewed and the entire contents of my bag were damp. Due to its low cost, this is expected, as the material is of somewhat low quality.

Above all of that, while the pouch may be made of cheap material, it can actually be frozen and is dishwasher safe, and is an overall worthy purchase considering the convenience it provides.

So, if you are finding that you have issues with the space that your current water bottle takes up in your book bag, the Bend-A-Bottle is a quick and inexpensive fix that still quenches your thirst. Just be wary of its cheap quality.

DEVON BOHART can be reached at features@theaggie.org.

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