The (In) Conspicuous Consumer

Two articles that I came across recently have combined to give me a slightly...uneasy...feeling.

Number one, Almost Girl's suggestion to create a list of every item of clothing you own (along with the retail price and the price paid) on an Excel spreadsheet. The goal at the end of the find the gaps in your closet (and presumably get a depressing idea of how much money is sitting on those Carrie Bradshaw said, "I like my money where I can see it, in my closet").

Number two, an article from the New York Times Style Magazine illustrating the joys that could come into our lives (in the form of new kitchens, public school for any children we may have, or nine years in a private nursing home) if we resist the urge to buy a J. Mendel sable every month, a Marc Jacobs bag, or a Cartier watch.

Now, as a carpe diem kind of girl, this kind of thinking makes me (as previously mentioned) a little uneasy. I like the idea of making a list of all of my clothes...actually, a photo database would be ideal...but adding the prices I paid seems needlessly depressing. For every bargain there's going to be something that I spent too much money on and didn't wear often enough. Seeing that fact in black and white isn't going to make anybody feel good...or cause a sudden epiphany so that I see the error of my ways.

The secondary consideration, that a life of frugal fashion purchases will allow me the senior care of my dreams. Granted, I may live to be a hundred and four but I could also be run over my a bus tomorrow. Clothes provide me with joy on a daily basis, how do you measure that against something that may happen thirty years in the future?

Plus, there's always the idea that, when I'm old and grey, I'll be able to sell my vintage Chanel and Moschino for vast amounts of money...thereby getting the best of both worlds.


Post a Comment 2 comments:

  • Rollergirl said...
    10:56 AM
    Hey, you've been tagged as a Rockin Girl Blogger! Check my blog for details...
  • elizabeth said...
    12:47 PM
    If someone could actually create the photo database/wardrobe mistress computer program a la Cher Horowitz from Cluless (with "Fashion" by David Bowie playing in the background), they would make an insane amount of money.

    As for forgoing certain items for things that are arguably better, yes, there is something to say for carpe diem, but at the same time, it is depressing to realize that you've spent $40,000 on shoes and don't have enough for a down payment on a house/apartment. But it all comes down to choosing what's important and trading up appropriately--for some it'll be a huge kitchen tricked out with Viking and Wolf appliances, and for others it'll be that J.Mendel sable...

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