I have a love/hate relationship with shopping. When I’m in the mood and hit a good sale, watch out. You are looking at the scorer of some legendary deals, people. Le. Gen. Dary. For instance, the $11 military jacket from Loehmann’s. The $17 patent leather driving moccasins from Loehmann’s. The embroidered silk slip dress from Loehmann’s. Man, I miss Loehmann’s!
I try to fill the void with Nordstrom Rack. I DID find an amazing violet, open-back Eileen Fisher sweater there once, but it’s not the same. And of course I love me some TJ Maxx and Marshalls, but they’re hit or miss.
There’s nothing worse than forced shopping, though. Everyone knows when you’re shopping for something you need desperately, you never find it. (Like the perfect shorts. Or boots.) And this time, it was something I really, really need. See, I’m going to a wedding. Next week. In Boston. Snowmageddon Central, where there are still several feet of the dirty, icy stuff on the ground, from what I hear. And all my formal wear is warm-weather only.
Now, some people may think, “Yay! An excuse to buy a new outfit.” Not me. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: my life is not the Oscars. I don’t do one-time only outfits. If recycling your wardrobe is good enough for Kate Middleton, it’s good enough for me!
Besides, I had a dress in mind. The one I wore to my cousin’s wedding, in fact. Except this time instead of the yellow belt, I would rock it with a bejeweled belt I found on sale at Anthropologie, that mecca of beautiful bohemian bounty and deliciously scented candles. And where I found the most perfect sunglasses ever. That was a good day.
Only thing was, I needed some warmth. And even though I am the Cardigan Queen of the Mid-Atlantic, I don’t own one in the right shade or style to go with this dress. Google led me to a promising possibility: a pale gold metallic cropped cardigan. No time for shipping snafus. So off I went to Macy’s. On my way to the dressing room to try it on, a shimmer of sequins caught my eye. Ooh, pretty shiny thing! I grabbed that cardigan, too.
In the dressing room, wearing the dress and belt I’d cleverly brought with me, I tried on both sweaters. I was stymied. They were both nice, but totally different. I needed a second opinion. So naturally, I snapped some selfies in the mirror and texted my husband and a friend. He picked one, she picked the other.
Argh! What was I to do? Should I take it to Twitter? Instagram? God forbid, Facebook?! No time for that. The saleslady was already getting concerned about how long I’d been in the dressing room. (“I’m fine, thanks. Just texting my peeps!”) I guess I could’ve asked her, but come ON. Ask a total stranger’s opinion? In person? What is this, 2002?
By this time, another text had pinged to the rescue: a friend’s coworker had weighed in, breaking the tie. Sorry, hon, you were outvoted by a handful of random females. Guys are used to that, though, right? If it makes them feel better, I’m sure Duchess Kate never takes Wills’ opinion on her outfits either.
I’d been so concerned with the color I hadn’t even noticed the price tag. The cashier rang up my purchase: $15. For a second, I thought I’d died and gone to Loehmann’s.
UPDATE: As I was publishing this post, I discovered that Loehmann’s is back … sort of. It’s now an online-only store. Not the same. 🙁