We're reading "Shopaholic Takes Manhattan" on the subway for a nice pre-and-post-work diversion, and it's simply lovely... but we realized immediately that it is impossible for us to empathize with the heroine, given as she is to near-vapors at the sight of a designer label. Yes, we have a shopping problem, to an extent, but rarely does a single piece we buy top $30. Have we mentioned that we don't care for things that are expensive just because the designer has a certain image? We admit that frequently the higher-end labels have exquisite workmanship-- which is why we surely squeal a little at finding a huge bargain in a Calvin Klein skirt or Ralph Lauren dress (the savings off the original price tag is only part of the excitement)-- but we find it simply astounding that women pay hundreds, if not thousands of dollars for things just... because! Not couture, not hundreds of hours of beading, just that it's the "it" thing (waiting lists for handbags? o_O
To us, something being the "it" thing means that far too many people like it and we should steer clear. Tiffany jewelry and Coach bags don't say upscale to us, they say conformist. Maybe it's because we've never actually had money to throw around to that kind of extent, but we're simply aghast at times-- like last weekend when we stepped into a Macy's for the first time. You can talk all you want about the supposed sales, but this store terrified us. Arranged by designer?? What if we want to look at all of the dresses? Or all of the dresses that have been marked down? What a travesty. We ended up spotting and buying a top that we were looking for (black, slinky, tummy-control, $30) for a bachelorette party, but we got the hell out of there quickly after that. And the jewelry, mind you, was way overpriced, terribly generic and horribly gold-heavy (we forgot to mention in last week's "nevers" that we do NOT wear gold.
So anyway... we got to wondering what kind of a girl goes in for that sort of thing. We know a few who love select designers-- and that's all fine and well; if you find something you love, run with it! But do you have to grow up with money to appreciate rather than denigrate the clothes in Vogue, for example? We remember even as a child not thinking "wow I hope someday I can afford this" but "what is wrong with people?"
We're probably cynical, but other than a nice solid pair of shoes or coat or bag that you will use every day, we don't see spending more than $100 for any attire.
What do you think? Does a name brand guarantee quality? Are high-end designers worth the price to you? Does the brand impart something that we are missing? (Or perhaps just don't care about) Do you think it is bred through luxurious upbringing, or perhaps a spartan one, inspiring excessive longing? Give us your thoughts!