My dad taught me how to shop.
No, really. Mom worked in retail and working in retail can suck all the fun out of shopping. I hit my teen years and really struggled with fashion. We couldn't afford what was "in," and the people I went to school with pointed that out to me. Loudly and often.
"Bobos, make your feet feel fine. Bobos, cost a dollar ninety-nine."
Twenty years have passed since the first morning they sang that song to me, a serenade outside of my math class while I pretended to read a book. I still hear it. I still gaze longingly at top brand shoes, because my spirit holds scars connected to the generic version of Keds.
And I still can't get away with buying what's in. At least, not a lot of it and not the "real" thing in most cases. I can dream of 7 for all Mankind, but they are not in my price range. Ya know? So I window shop. I browse Zulily when new sales go up.
Do I buy things?
Nope. I have, in my entire life, purchased from Zulily one time. I ordered shirts for my youngest son for Christmas. That's it.
Instead of buying, I pin. I have a Pinterest board called Window Shopping. I pin whatever strikes my fancy. Then, every few months, I browse the board and delete more than half of the pins. I learned this from my Dad, in another version.
Dad used to tell me, to avoid impulse buying, I should carry an item around the store and see how badly I still wanted it when it was time to go. Or, make myself wait a day and then go back to buy it. If, in that time, I found I didn't want it as much as I thought, I'd saved myself some cash.
It works. I have NOT bought so many things using this method. And now I've transferred it to the digital world via Pinterest.
The upside? When I do buy something, I know I am making a good purchase. For instance, I bought a TARDIS dress recently. I spotted it in Hot Topic about a year ago. I wanted it. I didn't need it though. I put off buying it. Until this month, when they were changing to a different TARDIS dress style and my dress was being discontinued. There was only one left in my size.
I think still wanting something enough to visit it in the store after twelve months makes it a solid purchase. I won't get tired of it. I will wear it.
In so many ways, I act on impulse. And, until the last few years, shopping was one of those ways. I am learning though. My closet is happier for it.
As is my bank account.