Does anyone else jump onto a website, load things into their shopping cart, decide they have felt all the things they needed to feel and then exit without completing the order? I do this often, and I know it says something about how shopping for me isn't just about what I buy, it's about the feels I get during the experience. I've actually been curbing my spending habits all year and a big part of that has been identifying if I need to buy something or if I just want that feeling of buying it.
Despite my ability to buy things practically being a skill I could be endorsed for on LinkedIn, I'm actually not someone who enjoys the shopping process. Sure, the actual purchasing is a bit of a hit, but shopping or browsing I find quite dull. Especially for clothes. My sister Goldfields Girl and I have very different tolerance levels in this regard. She's someone who shops diplomatically. She considers everything, she takes way too much time making a decision and she often invests lots of time in the consideration process without ever finalising her decision. I'm really different to that. I make up my mind quickly, I know what I want, I scan. If I have seen to much of 'the same' I get bored with shopping and I'm done. One of the quickest ways of putting me off buying anything is to have to try it on.
The actual energy it takes to take off all my clothes and put on another set is completely snore inducing. It's even worse if the fitting room has bright direct overhead light that throws cellulite or lumps into harsh shadows, and the mirror is at a flattering angle that makes my thighs look a billion times bigger than they are. On top of that, while I'm trying not to notice the lumpy version of myself in the mirror, there are times when in the same mirror I can see a reflection out into the shop from the sides of those stupid curtains so many fitting rooms have that never actually close. There's this one store locally that has saloon doors that cover you from crotch to shoulder and nothing more. Heaven forbid you have to bend down at any point during your changing session or if you're too tall for the room.
I guess this is one of the reasons why I prefer to spend money online. I can generally tell just by looking at something whether or not it will fit me. I can search by exactly the item I want. I can't do that in a store. I have to look through the whole store and pull things off the rack to inspect them. I know what cuts look good on my figure and if I buy online I can even try them on in my own home and send back what doesn't work for me. If I buy anything at all. Maybe this thing with looking at things, adding them to your online shopping cart and never checking out is to adults what those 'toy unboxing' videos on YouTube are for children.
I know that this information may frustrate some local people who will want to know why I don't spend all my money locally and support local businesses. Aside from the fact that I do (often), getting to a 'bricks and mortar' store when I work a 9-5 job is actually quite difficult. There's that old comment that if everyone spent $10 more locally that it would invest a huge amount back into the local economy. I've always felt like that is an oversimplification of the way to fix or support a local economy when in 2015, my hometown with a population less than 100,000 lost $53million on poker (slot) machines. In addition to that, getting things locally can't always be done. Brands and designers I like just don't have a presence in my city and if they do, they often don't get full access to the season range. This means that I'm regularly heading with my sister down the road to Geelong or even Bendigo (and occasionally Melbourne) to broaden our shopping experience.
These pictures were from my birthday in Geelong back in April. Geelong is a beautiful city, only an hour away from our home town. It's chance to smell the ocean, hear the gulls and also to get the chance to shop for things that you just can't get in a small town. This beautiful heritage merry-go-round is on the waterfront and we played on there as well as spending the whole day enjoying the city.
All this being said, I would love to see a month of the year or a week long project where people challenge themselves to only buy things locally. I wonder if it would work or if people would just put off buying things they would normally get online or out of town until after the challenge was over. Either way, this is something I really want to hear your opinion on. What things do you prefer to buy local? What are you unable to get locally? What do local business do that helps you buy from them? Do you shop online? Let's discuss!
Dress: Shabby Apple
Shoes: borrowed from my sister
Photos: Goldfields Girl