Sunday, April 3, 2011

Confessions of a Relapsing Shopaholic - Part 2

So, after sharing about the inner turmoil associated with my shopping addiction, I am happy to report that I have regained composure and am on a path to recovery!  Thanks to the comments left by Proudly Petite, Stylepint, and Beartea, I have put together a 3-step program (which incorporates many of their wise words) which I hope will help me regain balance:

Step 1. Return a few items that I have not worn, am not 100% about, etc. - I took an assessment of some of the yet unworn items from my previous month of binging, and have returned or will be returning some things (I apologize for the bad photos, I was reduced to using my iPhone and snapping pictures in the mirror as both of our cameras ran out of juice).

A. Mossimo Sheath Dress, in Olive - a few posts ago, I was raving about this sheath dress.  The one I fell in love with was the turquoise one below.  I, being a relapsing shopaholic, returned to Target to buy this dress in beige, then exchanged it for the olive color below.  Though the pictures do a bad job showing this, the turquoise dress fits very nicely, while the olive-colored dress is a bit roomier at the top and does not hug the shoulders well - so, this puppy went back to Target yesterday - $27.99 (pre-tax) back in my wallet!

 B. Xhiliration black lace cardigan - I decided to buy this cardigan after seeing how awesome it looked on Jean from ExtraPetite (but, then again, what doesn't look awesome on her?).  Anyway, I bought this lacey number and gave it a twirl in one of my posts (here).  However, this item would have likely been something worn once or twice, forgotten, and then would end up in my donation pile a year or two out.  So, this cardi was also brought back to Target - $11.97 black back on the books (hey, every penny counts!). 

 C. Ann Taylor Loft Denim Pencil Skirt - I loved this skirt, and thought it would get a lot of use, but bought it in at least a size too small (those store mirrors lie to you!).  When I tried this skirt on again yesterday at home, it was clear that I was squeezing into it and that it was not fitting the way it was intended.  I took this back to the LOFT today with intentions of walking in, getting a refund, and walking out.  However, LOFT is having a 50% off sale items sale, so I naturally grabbed a few items to try on (more on my epiphany during this shopping trip later - in Step 2).  I did try on the 2P in the skirt, which looked okay, but was a bit roomier than I would have liked, so I passed (yay me!).  I did end up purchasing a pair of pants that did fit perfectly, are something I'll get a lot of wear out of as the weather out here is still frigid, and only came out to around $20.  So, I left the LOFT with about $15 back in wallet - small victory! - definitely a first for me!

 D. Ann Taylor Platform slingbacks, in nude - I looooove, these shoes, and kept wearing them around the house yesterday.  In fact, you can see them pictured above with my Mossimo turquoise sheath dress.  However, as I was going through my closet, I was reminded of a pair of $10 shoes I bought from Target that I think could take the place of these pumps for most of the casual outfits I plan to wear (see comparison below).  As for business attire, the Ann Taylor Perfect Pumps in nude will do just fine.  So, these darlings (as much as it pains me - but pain in this case is good), are going back to Ann Taylor when I'm next in the mall (which will only be to pick up alterations from my tailor, and nothing else!).  Returned cash - $77!
E. H&M Short-Sleeved Shirt Dress, in black - Again, another item I LOVE and bought in two colors (keeping the red-orange one) and would get a lot of use out of.  However, as I was looking through my closet, I saw a BR black dress, though different in style, that would likely fit the bill and is something I already own (I could perhaps throw on a belt to add more definition to the BR dress).  See below for comparisons.  H&M Dress, $34.99, exercising restraint? - Priceless.

So, with step 1 in my 3-step plan, I am putting about $170 back in my bank account - certainly doesn't completely offset the damage I've done (ok, not even close), but, baby steps, right?  Before talking about Step 2, I would like to quickly vent about a certain local boutique that I bought 2 costly dresses from - neither of which I can return for a refund (only store credit on the full-priced dress, and the sale dress was final sale, though I was uninformed of this).  So, though I would like to return these dresses, I'm stuck with them.  Also, I have a few unworn items from outlet stores that I acquired during a business trip to Chicago.  Since the nearest locations of these stores is a 2 hour drive away, returning these items is not an option.  Okay, now back to my 3-step program...

Step 2. Avoid the mall!  I have come to terms with the fact that I have very little willpower when I am at the source of the problem - clothing stores.  So, if I avoid the mall, I am less likely to fall prey to great sales, items beckoning to me from the shelves & racks, and will thereby regain control over my spending.

Step 3. Re-invent my wardrobe.  I have no intentions of removing myself from the Petite Fashion Community - it's like asking someone to give up TV after having caught a glipse of it's, I do realize that reading up on recent discoveries and purchases of my fellow bloggers is inevitably going to make me want something new.  However, after spending a year trying to wear every single article of clothing in my closet (during my year of no-shopping), I have learned that I have a buttload of clothes.  So, with a little creativity, I think that I can re-create outfits being beautifully displayed in store windows (and on the bodies of the beautiful Petite bloggers) using what I already have, and, as a result, reduce down the amount of new purchases made in a given month.  Being the achievement-oriented person that I am, I figure if I can turn Step 3 into a challenge, I'll be more inclined to stick with it and can continue saving up for my trip to Italy in May!  Plus, this new "challenge" gives me more material for my blogs :)

So, sorry, readers, for the long blog - but it's been a great cathartic time - thanks for indulging me!  Now, onto recovery!!!


  1. Way to go with your returns in step 1! The 3-step program sounds so useful to curb the shopping bug. I hope you'll keep it up and have fun remixing your wardrobe. I look forward to your re-invented outfits! =)

  2. Awesome job re: step 1! I actually really love the Target shoes you have c: I'd like to see a side shot at some point ;D

    My FAVORITE part about the blogging community is the clothing "remixes"... so, needless to say, I'm excited to see your "remixing" photos!! I've been wanting to do this myself lately.

    Good luck and good job, Lilly. And that really sucks about the boutique dresses... grrr. I assume you tried talking to the owner as well?


  3. @Stylepint: thanks for the encouragement!
    @Aubrey: I did take a side shot, but the picture was pretty terrible, so I'll see if I can incorporate a sideview in another post when I wear these shoes with something else :) About the boutique, yes, I did email the owner and have yet to get a return message - I'm not holding my breath - I'll just spread the word about her horrible customer service! Thanks again and stay tuned!

  4. I love how you're doing this. I'm behind even on this.. I should go back to my "what's going back" or "being donated" posts. I find that my not reading everyone's blogs in the past week or two has REALLY helped me a lot - I've had no desire to shop at all! (Though instead, I have a gadget I want instead!)

    BTW, I love your turquoise dress! Your Target pair is way cuter too... though I know the heavenly feel of AT Perfect Pumps!

  5. @grace - Oooo, would love to see what you're taking back or donating. That's been on my to do list as well, but requires me to do some spring cleaning - I hope to do this over the weekend. Stay tuned!

    Glad you like the Target dress - yes, cheap clothing is always a good thing, isn't it? I do LOVE the perfect pumps, though, and have decided to keep them (they're sold out everywhere in my size), but the platform shoes are going back this weekend!