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Multiple shopping personalities

November 16, 2011

Sometimes I think I have multiple shopping personalities.

In Lakeland I fancy buying pretty cake tins and picnic gear. This appeals to the tiny part of me that would like to be a domestic goddess, despite the fact I only bake once in a blue moon.

Banana muffins from ‘How to be a Domestic Goddess’ by Nigella Lawson

In Muji, my inner minimalist comes out. Ooh clean lines and simple shapes. How can I possibly resist? The fact I live in an already overcrowded and chaotic house is momentarily forgotten.

In a posh make-up and toilettries section of a department store, I find myself tempted by prettily packaged make-up, perfumes and miracle face creams – and have to remind myself that I already have more than sufficient quantities of similar items that have only been used a handful of times if that.

In an outdoor gear shop, I am enticed by lightweight and high tech outdoor and camping gear. But sadly the most adventurous thing I do these days is the occasional two hour, fair weather hike.

In any bookshop I can aspire to whatever lifestyle I fancy. Highbrow literature buff, regular camper, adventurous cook, polyglot, creative crafter, etc.

And there are the various clothing companies. Boden with its happy, colourful world. Toast, where everything looks beautifully-made and ever so comfortable and fit to be worn and used in castles and country cottages. Hobbs, with its take on womanly British elegance. Howies, so friendly and cosy and green and (potentially) sporty.

I think I’m getting slightly better at resisting things that don’t really fit into my actual life, but I still end up buying stuff I never end up using or reading.

The only time multiple shopping personalities come in handy is when I’m looking for a present for someone else. For example, if I’m looking for something for one of my sisters I just need to channel my ‘girly girl who loves handbags and make-up’ personality to find the perfect things.

What about you? Do you ever succumb to buying things that would suit a fantasy version of you rather than the real you?

Updated and edited version of a post originally written for the nyssapod blog.

10 Comments leave one →
  1. November 16, 2011 3:13 pm

    All the time!

    Whilst we do cook more, I’ll never be a cooking godess, but am tempted by that kind of stuff all the same. Even though I need about three times as much kitchen work surface as we have for the stuff we already own.

    Likewise on stuff for the home, though we live in chaos, there are still those frankly surprisingly persistent dreams of order and tidiness, fed very cleverly by beautiful items that double as clever storage.

    I don’t get tempted by clothes, shoes or make up though a posh bath oil often appeals, and I might stretch to some nice shower gel now and again.

    I love shopping for other people, but not all of them. Most friends I find easy to shop for, but definitely some more than others…

    • November 16, 2011 3:59 pm

      Thanks Kavey! It’s good to know I’m not the only one who is sometimes tempted to buy extra kitchen and home items.
      I can tell that you love shopping for other people. You’ve certainly chosen some lovely presents for me over the years.

  2. November 21, 2011 9:39 pm

    This sounds very familiar! I definitely shop for a myriad of ‘lives I’d quite like to have’ instead of my real life. It’s the only way to explain all the stuff littered around my house, which, collectively, makes me look like a crazy woman. Yes, I am a scanner, but it’s not very positive having un-worn clothes, fancy kitchen appliances or half finished projects littering the place! I definitely need to get better at shopping for the life I have, but there is always going to be a little bit of me that shops for a fantasy life. Perhaps it is ok, every so often – after all, a little daydreaming never hurt…

    • November 22, 2011 10:13 am

      Thanks for reading the post and commenting.
      Yes you’re right – it little daydreaming never hurt. It’s just a case of trying not to let it get out of hand.

  3. Soph permalink
    November 21, 2011 10:35 pm

    Ahem, not to be an ‘enabler’ or anything but the best cookware I have got is actually from an electronics/educational company called rapid online-their cooking and baking ware is designed for school use; so functional, a little bit boring but hardwearing and does the job extremely well. I got a tinplate muffin tin from there and am extremely impressed; its not cheap tinplate but quite heavy stuff-it was only £4-odd but bakes 12 huge full sized muffins; and with just a light greasing not a crumb is left in the tin when you turn them out…..and the best thing was I can pretend it was part of the very important home-schooling purchases 😀

    • November 22, 2011 10:11 am

      Thanks for the tip Soph! I hadn’t come across Rapid before and it looks as though they have lots of good value stuff. I’ll give them a go.
      (but I promise I’ll use my new-found discerning shopper skills to make sure that I don’t buy too much)

  4. Mammasaurus permalink
    December 14, 2011 1:43 am

    I need an oven before I can buy caking bits from Lakeland!
    I rarely buy things – that I need or want. Once in a blue moon I buy something useless and then shy away from shopping once again!

    • December 14, 2011 9:59 am

      We were without an oven for about 18 months. That is how long it took me to persuade my husband to let me buy a new one. (The old one was so old that the manual began with the words ‘Dear Housewife’! The light went on but it was decidedly lacking in heat)

  5. December 15, 2011 7:31 am

    I think that’s what the shops are hoping – that you buy into the lifestyles. They’re so sneaky. My kids are too little so I never go shopping anymore. I did used to enjoy a stroll around the shops at the weekend but it’s just not fun anymore.


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