Monday, April 9, 2012

I Cheated

I think I've been dreading writing this entry out of pure shame.  But it is time to get it out there.  I cheated. But first, the back story.

I have always tried to buy clothing that I can keep/wear for a long time.  I have an Izod windbreaker that I still wear that I got in high school (which is 30 some years ago).  I also have a dark paisley rain jacket/coat that my parents bought for me 20 some years ago at the now defunct Kaufmann's department store in Charleston, WV.  I have always loved that jacket but my husband has not.  While it is rare that he comments on my clothing selections, he has more than once expressed his desire that I not wear it anymore.  When I recently told him that I was having a problem with the zip out lining in it, he once again expressed his opinion that it was time to get rid of it.

But what to get to replace it?  It needed to be attractive, functional, and inexpensive while still being something that would last for 20+ years.  Jim's level of dislike for the previous coat would have probably allowed me to buy a Burberry replacement but that was way out of the realm of financial possibility.  (A girl can dream).

In looking around for a replacement, I found what appeared to be the ideal.  The bad news?  It was at Bloomingdales at Tyson's Corner.  Did I a) brave the traffic disaster that is that side of the Beltway and b) set foot in a mall when I'd so much rather shop locally?  My mother had been asking me to check on an item that was only available at a store in that particular mall so I decided to make the trek.

One of the things I noticed immediately when I went into Bloomingdales was that no one acknowledged me.  Anywhere.  I walked the floor a few times looking for my item and finally walked up to a clerk to ask.  She was helpful and walked me to the appropriate department and helped me find the coat.  But when I paid cash for the coat, she didn't give me the correct change and I had to ask for the amount.  Not the customer service I would get if I shopped at any of the local stores in Alexandria.

Plus, as I walked around Bloomingdales, I'd see the different brands and think "Oh, that's available at this store, that's available at that store, that's available at Zoe!"

I walked out into the mall to look for the item for my mother.  I'll admit my head was swiveling this way and that, taking in all the stores and what they had to offer.  But then I reminded myself - these same things are available within walking distance of Zoe or at Zoe!  I had to walk in a couple stores (like Cusp) just to see how they had displayed items and what they were selling.

After I checked on the item for my mom, I beat a hasty retreat from the mall.  And, honestly, I felt bad for the rest of the day.  I had cheated on my mantra of shopping locally.  I'm going to try not to do it again.

But I would be remiss if I didn't show you my new jacket.  I do like it.  I should carry something like this at Zoe in the future (negating my need and others needs to go to malls!)

Next up:  The "What I" series


  1. I have to admit, I am not good about shopping locally. Your post had made me re-think how I do my shopping.

  2. You have some great local stores in Birmingham! I've met some of the buyers at market! Definitely check them out the next time you have an event or need to buy a gift! They will love you for it!