Retail's Strangest Bedfellows: Out-of-Place Items at Popular Stores
by Michele Lerner Jan 8th 2013 6:00AM
Mismatched pairs have been around for ages. Beauty falling in love with the Beast? Tony Bennett singing a duet with Bono? Lance Armstrong canoodling with Ashley Olsen? And back in the early 1990s, Ted Danson and Whoopi Goldberg?
Odd couplings aren't limited to people. We've rounded up a few eyebrow-raising pairings we've seen at popular retailers. Chime in below with the weird mismatches you've seen.
Milk, Toilet Paper, Mortgage, Veggie Platter
While Costco (COST) shoppers already know they can buy giant slabs of cheese, a flat-screen TV and a 24-pack of toilet paper, now they can even finance a home in which to store all these goodies. You won't have to wear out your Kirkland-brand sneakers to find that loan on a warehouse shelf, either. On the company's website, you can compare offers from multiple lenders and apply online for a purchase loan or a refinance.
Toss Some Leafy Greens in with Your Prescriptions
It may seem perfectly normal to pick up some bubble bath and lipstick along with your latest prescription. And we've all gotten used to grabbing a soda or a snack at the local drugstore. But CVS (CVS) stores have added a new option for combining a grocery trip with a meds pickup: You can now buy fresh fruits, prepared sandwiches, and salads at the drugstore.
Care For Some Flannel Jammies to Wear Over That Corset?
The ubiquitous Victoria's Secret stores, catalogs, and TV specials are notorious for their super-skimpy, super-sexy lingerie that runs the gamut from tiny thongs and push-up bras to corsets and garters and ... flannel pajamas?! Yes. Victoria's Secret sells red plaid flannel pajamas like Grandma used to wear. Of course, this being Victoria's Secret, there's also pink plaid for that feminine touch.
Mixing Drugs and Alcohol
While Duane Reade drugstores in New York City have been selling fresh food alongside pantyhose and cosmetics for years, the chain took the idea of providing for customers' every need a step further when they started selling beer on tap. Customers can pick up a refillable "growler" in the store, fill it with a favorite beer, and take it to go. If you think you might overindulge on the beer, you can always grab some Advil and Tums before you leave.
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Artisan Chocolates To Match Your New Ottoman
It seems normal that a furniture store like Crate & Barrel would sell tablecloths, wineglasses, and candlesticks along with the dining room table. Adding blenders and fondue sets make a little bit of sense. But selling the actual food you'll serve your guests -- such as chocolates, condiments and spices? As long as you're picking up a glass platter, might as well, right?
Michele Lerner is a contributing writer to The Motley Fool. The Motley Fool owns shares of Costco Wholesale. Motley Fool newsletter services recommend Costco Wholesale.