2. What not to buy

It sounds so easy, and is yet so impossible to achieve: to only buy things that you will actually wear.

Most men have this down to an art. I think it may be because they often find shopping a drag, or a threat for that matter. Their girlfriend may have been saying “we are getting you a new pair of jeans, today!” Enough to bring drops of sweat onto a man’s forehead. Feeling threatened and cornered, his senses will be heightened. He will make a sharp, quick and safe decision to get it over and done with and to remove himself from the danger zone. Women however go into a trance-like state, floating around shops for hours in total ecstasy and often completely losing their ability for reasonable judgement. You can spot them from miles away – a deluded grin on their faces while they are prowling, or worse, faces contorted in sales rage, dollar signs flashing madly in their eyes. Usually they are already carrying about eighty bags that may or may not be attached to a pram.

Here’s a reminder of the (expensive) mistakes we all have made at one point or another.

What doesn’t fit you now….

…. will never fit you! It’s bad enough that our bodies change all the time without our say. Why would you buy something that doesn’t fit in the first place? I have done it and I have seen friends do it, worst example of it all being a friend who actually bought a (bargain) wedding dress where the zip would not close, vowing to loose a few pounds before the wedding. Needless to say, on the date she wore a different dress in the size she should have bought in the first place.

What keeps you up at night….

…. is not worth having! Are you waking up at three o’clock in the night with stomach aches because you have no idea how you are ever going to pay off your credit card? I’ve been there and it’s a hell of a place to be in. There is only one thing to do. Don’t buy anything! Seriously, not a thing! Not even that two quid top from Primark. Nobody needs clothes so badly that it is worth going into debt for.

What you considered ugly before your friend had it….

…. will never make a good buy. Fashions change and playing around is fun, but we all have a certain basic ideas and ideals that are ingrained in us and reflect our personality (it’s called style!). Following a trend that is not you will make you look like a lemming, or as if you are trying to be somebody else. I bought things because I saw them on other girls, ignoring that these girls were sporty and skinny while I am an hourglass, and simply don’t have the physique to pull off their look. Embrace who you are, have fun with it and use it to your advantage. If you absolutely have to buy the latest whatever, buy it as cheap as you can.

What is in need of repair….

….is best left alone. Often found on the last day of the sales, these bargains can turn out to be as expensive as if you had bought the item intact, and at full price. There may be some clever self made seamstresses out there who can fix a rip, replace a broken zip or take clothes in where required, but if you aren’t one of them, you will need a professional to repair the damage, which is expensive. Tears may also be a sign that the garment is simply not of good quality.  I once bought a blouse with a tiny rip at the back. As soon as I had fixed it, the seam on the wrist started falling apart. Then on the other wrist. Then another seam at the back. Tired of stitching the thing up, it went in the bin.

What costs the world….

…. is intended for the super rich, not for mortals like you and me. It seems to have become a thing over the past few years that girls are saving up a month’s salary for a handbag (or worse, buying it on credit). It is ridiculous! If you want something timeless that lasts for years, a couple of hundred pounds will buy you an excellent quality leather bag. You will spend an additional eight hundred if it says Mulberry on the front but you’re not gaining anything in quality. By the way, people won’t be thinking you are rich carrying a designer bag, they will simply think it’s a fake.

Any of these sound familiar? Try not to repeat them next time and put the money you have saved aside to go on a city break with your best dressed friend, exploring the shopping in far away lands. Which brings me to my next point: who makes a great shopping companion, and who is better left at home.

… to be continued….

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