dimanche 20 septembre 2015

The spiral

Before going back to work, after realizing that my pool of decent fitting pants had drastically reduced (partly due to old age for some and for other because of my summer - ahem - intake of calories), I decided to do a bit of shopping.

I ended up buying a blouse, a cardigan, both from H&M and, finally the initial goal of the hunt, pants from Isabel Marant Etoile (all shown worrn in that previous post).

These 3 -relatively speaking- harmless purchases were enough to send me back down into the spiral of more shopping.

I don't know why shopping automatically calls for more shopping but it does for me. I try very hard to fight what triggers that spending habit and ensure as much control as I can on it.

So to fight this "dangerous" shopping impulse, I spent a few hours of a saturday, a couple of weeks ago bringing back some of the mid season clothes from the cellar storage. Getting a clear visual of my stock through this inventory created more distance to the constant "need" creeping in my mind, insinuating that I don't have (enough of) this or that.

But one of the most effective prevention tool is to stop seeing this or that item as "cute", "beautiful" in short to undermine its aesthetic value. What catches my eyes does because it "speaks" to me, if it got my attention it's because it's interesting, I like it.

I can get easily tempted by something that pleases my senses in the moment. When that happens, I try to focus instead on its value as a whole. Meaning: paying attention to the material (cut, stitching, comfort), versatility/style and price.

Take for example this Sandro sweater: I saw it on Julia Roberts in Elle France magazine back in the middle of summer and instantly craved for it.

(Elle France)

When I spotted it at my local department store a few weeks later, eyes bright and touching the soft mix of wool and cashmere I tried it on and my did I like what I saw in the mirror.

I just wanted to buy the sweater right away but cooled down enough in the changing room to go through my own mental little Q&A :

1) it's a tied sweater...so yes it's cool in a very Lemaire-ish /celine-ish stylish intellectual way however would I wear it to work? Not sure. Actually no, I wouldn't. Don't want to add up to my fashionista label. So that makes it wearable only a couple of days a week...

2) Would I still like it in a few months or a year? Maybe but I'm not sure about the quality of that brand. I would hate it to start pilling after a handful of wear...

3) it's 195 euros. Not going to lie if money was no objection I could wrap my mind around points 1 and 2 but that's a lot cash for a lot of uncertainty.

In the end I left without it and even if I've been thinking about that sweater from time to time, I managed to reason myself and stop the obsession spiral.

The silver lining of constant shopping cravings is that I get physically drained and bored very fast by stores visits so that these  episodes never last too long.

So what about you, are you like me pulled to the dark-ish side of consumerism once you get a taste of it or are you a born and bred resistant to the sirens of fashion stores? Any tools, advices to share aside from living in a cave with no internet I mean?

9 commentaires:

  1. Oh yes, once I start shopping it snowballs out of control. Tends to happen esp. during the summer sales. I'm glad I'm not the only one making life decisions in the fitting room. lol!

    1. It's fascinating in a weird kind of scientific way the effect shopping can have on us...

  2. You're definitely not alone. When I get bit by the bug, what I TRY to do is go play in my closet and make new outfit combinations: https://www.pinterest.com/stereoscopic/favorite-outfits-2015/
    But sometimes I fail and wind up with lots of new things. Then I have to spend time eBaying old things. So I try to remind myself that it's better to save time and money in the long run by being happy with what I have!

    1. Thanks for sharing! Pinterest is such a great place to get some fashion inspiration but just like other blogs and IG, it's all the source of many cravings I didn't know I had! Just checked your board, it's really cool! And a great way to vizualize your outfits. You have wonderful items, that Zara leopard coat is fantastic...Among other things!
      I'm the queen of buying and returning stuff at the moment. I get psyched by this or that, get home and realize that these pumps are very pretty indeed but will hurt like hell! Too bad I didn't want to process this while in store...

    2. Thank you Aissa! You've inspired me to wear that coat tomorrow =)

  3. I always find that if I walk away from an item, more often than not, I can talk myself out of it. I've cut down on impulse purchases quite a bit. Sometimes it's hard, especially if I'm at a consignment shop and there's only one of it left in my size, but I just walk away, even if it's to go for coffee and mull it over, I'd say about 99% of the time I never go back to purchase it.

    Online it's a bit harder, but similar thing, I just leave it in my shopping cart and do something else for an hour or two and most of the time the fervor dies down.

    My big trigger is work stress, like if I've had a rough week I'll just visit my favorite shops and it can get very dangerous!

    1. I'm very influenced by work stress too, shopping gets to be my "reward" and it's harder to reason with myself in that case...
      Taking distance physically, that's a good trick. I can usually muster the willpower to put items back especially when their cost makes me ponder my financial status but it's with the "little" things that I can get into trouble! Will apply (harder) that rule to "regular" shopping as well.

  4. I like to travel so when I make a more frivolous purchase I think, " that's a plane ticket" to some place. Usually that stops me in my tracks. It certainly held me off from buying my beloved Isabel Marant Dickers that I eyed from afar for years until I finally took the plunge this past winter soldes season ( and they don't even go on sale! sigh, still much cheaper than US prices). I usually try to walk in with a mental list, which helps keeps my shopping in check. But when I was younger and more into secondhand shopping, it was definitely much harder.

    1. Haha that's what I call the translator trick. Translating a price into something that "speaks" to me. I perveted this concept more than once when I bought very expensive items because they amounted to what I paid for taxes! :)) I was like "F... it! That's (more or less) what I gave back to the State" so I can buy this!
      Side note: the Dickers must be one of the best footwear investment I've ever made. Got mine about a decade ago and I still love them!