Tuesday, June 17, 2008

SwoC: No longer 21

After last week's shopping indiscretion, I feared my strength to resist other clothing buying opportunities had weakened. Walking down Fifth Avenue this evening in the perfectly breezy, sunny weather, I decided to pop in to Forever 21.... Admittedly, I was already thinking of how I would conceal my purchases from the watchful eye of my blog until after my SwoC deadline- June 30. But after wandering around the first floor of the 34th Street location, fighting my way through gaggles of tweens and their mothers - all rifling through the racks for an eyeleted summer fix for $20 - I started to wonder why I had even stepped through the door. Yeah, I'd spotted some very cute ruffly tops and a cute little pinafore dress, too, but I had plenty at home! The thought of guiltily shuffling through my front door with one more yellow plastic bag felt toxic. Out of habit, I got on the escalator to scan to goods upstairs. I noticed a few other cute-ish items, but nothing was getting me excited enough to wrestle it free from the tangle of hangers and spaghetti straps on the racks. Instead, I got back on the escalator and walked out the door empty handed.

So proud of myself, I am!

I realize my way of thinking has transformed a bit. While, granted- I did buy new clothes last week, I have begun to see the logic of not shopping just for the rush of shopping; grabbing any cheap little cute thing that catches my eye. I used to be a binge shopper. I could never go looking for one item and just buy that. I'd always have to grab 2 or 3 other things along with it- ESPECIALLY when in a bargain or cheap frills store. Now I think I'd prefer to be more selective. While still breaking my pledge last week, I did have the presence of mind to thoughtfully whittle down my purchases to just two key pieces for myself that I knew would add something to my wardrobe. Know what? It felt just as good to edit my purchases as it would have to buy everything that I would have normally. Living in New York and having the opportunity to go sample saling, I can make the money I keep out of chains like Forever 21 go further with some really quality, designer duds.

This is all not to say that I won't ever step foot in F21 again. I'm sure I'll shop there again. But it is to say that there is an awakening in me concerning shopping, or the limitation there of, that I find exciting. Petty as this topic may be, I feel as if I am getting a better grip of something in my life that needed addressing.


a cat of impossible colour said...

Good on you for leaving without buying anything! It's so hard to do. I've only been to a F21 store once, when I was visiting the States a couple of years ago, but I remember my reaction was, "ooh, shiny!" and I couldn't help buying a couple of dresses.

I wanted to ask you a favour - I really admire what you've been doing on your month of avoiding shopping, and you've inspired me to do it too (in July). I wondered if I could borrow your name for it (Style Without Consuming)? Giving it a shiny label makes it seem more of a project, somehow. I'm planning to keep track of it on my blog and I would link to you when I mention SWoC.

Thanks for the inspiration, Daphne! (Style inspiration as well as not-consuming inspiration). :)


crossxmyxhooks said...

good good good! I must admit I've faltered too..but I do beleive I can beat this! :) so you can too!!

I put some stuff up, and then I forget about it, so when I come back to it, I love it all over again....

We can beat this! :) enjoy your day!

softspoken said...

good for you! it's been quite a long long while since f21's gotten any money of mine.

a cat of impossible colour said...

Thanks so much for your comment - I'll keep you updated with my SWoC progress :)

Rachel said...

i've mostly stopped shopping there. i find that if you buy something designer or more expensive, you think a lot harder before buying it, and those are the things you end up loving for years. something so cheap at forever 21 you'll just buy cause you think it's "ok" and then you'll wear it a few times and get rid of it. its much more environmentally friendly/friendly to the world economy to buy designer, indie designer if you can!