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Fashion Recession

October 16, 2009

Yesterday I came across a really good article run by 39th and Broadway about how the recession became the latest marketing tool and I decided to share some of my experience and thoughts on how the recession shaped my fashion sense.

I am among those lucky ones who haven’t lost their jobs, so I am not going to complain about how hard it hit me, because it didn’t.

Instead, it made me think about how I spend my money. For the past few years I adopted the “ostrich strategy” – put my head in the sand and had a good time. I had my moments of bad consciousness but it was always easy to justify every spending one way or another.

Until it finally hit me, and I looked back, and I was appalled at how much money I spent on completely useless staff. Like, that dress, for example, I really wanted it so badly, then and there, and it still has the price tag hanging sheepishly at the back…

I suppose I became disgusted at how money lost its value and shopping became “retail therapy”. Think about it, the term seriously stinks but how many of us were actually using it to justify any expense – “I had a really bad day at work, I deserve to treat myself!” Nothing wrong with a treat but don’t you think you have had too many bad days lately?

So powered with my newly acquired “wisdom” I decided to put an end to it. And I have to say I actually enjoy fashion much more since. Revamping my wardrobe or putting together new outfits from my old clothes can be as much fun as doing impulse shopping. And since I think twice before I buy anything, I am much pickier which means my style has improved. All in all, I enjoy working with what I’ve got and saving money more than my guilty shopping sprees!

I finally invested into new sewing equipment, which I thought I couldn’t afford. Of course I couldn’t, I was too busy spending my salary on rags.

About the recession marketing:

 1. Buying a bag reduced from €900 to 750€ is not a good deal. You are spending 750€, not saving €150. (I’ve never spend so much   money on a bag, I am just making a point)

2. Spending €200 in Penney’s on bags full of clothes is not a good deal. You still spend €200 on clothes you probably don’t need even though they were €10-€20 each.

3. You have read that great article about customizing your clothes, rushed into the closest haberdashery shop and spent €100 on a pile  of ribbons, beads and buttons which will end up at the bottom of your drawer. I know you probably felt very noble at the idea of being such a good recessionista. But it wasn’t a good deal. If you bought one or two the chances that you actually do something with them would have been much better.

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6 Comments leave one →
  1. October 19, 2009 12:50 am

    Ah, this is so true… And while I do hate spending money, I buy an awful lot of clothes. H&M is my weakness. I might walk in actually needing a scarf, then find myself up at the counter buying t-shirts, a skirt, a dress, a hoodie… Ack. It needs to stop!

  2. Mari permalink
    October 19, 2009 8:10 am

    Very good post. My advice would be, don’t deny yourself the odd treat every now and then. We all know what happens when you don’t allow yourself something…You start wanting it more badly than ever, and then comes the guilt.

  3. White Rabbit permalink*
    October 19, 2009 9:04 am

    Lyndsay, I know what you mean! It does take discipline…and I have to admit I went to Penney’s yesterday (yes, I know, the most unethical brand in the world!) to buy a pair of tights and eneded up buying a dress, a cardigan and a pair of leggings…

    I think Mari is right, you need to allow yourself to go astray from time to time…just not every week 🙂

  4. Mari permalink
    October 19, 2009 12:12 pm

    With Penney’s however, you need to practice a total absence. Don’t even pop in there, that place is evil.

    • Mari permalink
      October 20, 2009 1:32 pm

      Evil in the way that it’s impossible to walk out without a purchase. Maybe in other ways too, but hopefully they have cleaned up their act.

  5. White Rabbit permalink*
    October 19, 2009 12:23 pm

    Yes, it is…I felt pretty guilty..

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