Saturday, April 21

Confessions of a Shopaholic

Last year I swapped at the age of 20 my children's cabinet for a built in closet with the result that I finally got enough place for all my clothing and had even a lot of extra space.  Unfortunately that extra area shrinked in no time and now that poor big closet is already crammed with clothes. I can tell you and I'm probably not alone: I love clothes. Even more, I love new clothes. The only thing is that I have already everything I need.

Still every time I announce that I'll take three months off from shopping for clothes, shoes and accessories everybody stops breathing and stares at me like I'm an alien. Or just crazy. 

"You, Renée, taking a break from shopping? You'll never be able to bring this to a good end. And why would you? Is this really necessary?"

Well, actually, it is. 

Some weeks ago I became more and more aware of my shopping habits. I live in Antwerp and am surrounded by stores 24/7 and even though in my head I know there is nothing in this world that I must have, still the enticement is too big for just passing them without even giving them a single glance. 

Most days I just wanted to buy something, anything at all because I had a stressful day or because I felt overwhelmed by life, just to celebrate something and most of the time out of boredom. I rationalized a desire to just spend. What's horrifying because, really, imagine what else you can do with saving all that money you normally waste on clothes you don't need: a week's groceries, a month's rent, that new camera you want for ages, a weekend away with your love or maybe even a trip far away! 

Besides that I also do shop online. Nothing better than sitting inside my apartment clicking through web pages like asos, topshop and riverisland, checking out their new items with a glass of wine (or two). And order a dress (or two).

Shopping had become a pick-me-up when I was feeling down and a way to celebrate when I was feeling great. And so it happened I was starting to feel bad about all the new things I was buying. A new emotion was creeping into my heart; guilt. 

Two weeks ago I stood in front of my closet and got the classic "closet full of nothing to wear", and I was so tired of it. Looking in my wardrobe, I realised how many flimsy summer dresses I have. The only thing is that I live in most of the time rainy and grey clouded Belgium, what makes that all those lovely dresses sit in my wardrobe all year, waiting... Waiting for me to wear three of them a day to get through them when I am on holiday. It's sad, isn't it? And so it's time to make a change.

I don't believe that the urge to shop will go away. But I hope that after this detox of three months I will be able to make sure that what I buy really counts. Shopping is emotional but I need to get my head involved too. I do have what I need in my closet, and if not, I will get to know what's still missing in the next couple of weeks. 

This weekend I'll take a look in my wardrobe and make a list of all the things I have and maybe make a sort of wish list with things I really do need. I want to check that list after 3 months and see if I still think the same about those items. If yes, I'll buy it but probably it will be a 'No'. Because I hope to become a pro in mix'n match and get a little more creative with what I've got. I hope to get more out of my wardrobe.

In 3 months I want to see myself strolling around the shopping streets while keeping my shopping addiction in check and see the difference between 'need' and 'want'.

What do you think about taking a break from shopping? Did you ever do it? Or are you one of those girls who can keep it under control?
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  1. Echt moedig om dit allemaal te schrijven! Ik denk dat veel vrouwen zich hierin herkennen, maar niet durven toegeven of er iets aan doen zoals jij, dus proficiat! 3 maanden is niet superlang, het lukt je zeker!
    En gewoon buitengaan zonder geld of bankkaart kan misschien handig zijn, haha ;) xx

  2. i totally get you! i actually spent a summer in brussels doing an internship- every time i would feel stressed because of the long working hours, or every time i would feel happy that the weekend had arrived, i would end up in Antwerp, shopping. COS, urban outfitters, zara, mango, river island.
    i bought the most amazing stuff, i still have them in my wardrobe, but still i get the feeling "i have nth to wear" all the time.
    and it's not that summer- it's all the time for exactly the same reasons you mentioned. thank god i don't have a credit card or i would probably be in jail right now. and online shopping.... a true disease

    you know i blame the whole BLOGGER thing. sometimes i feel i have to buy new clothes- try the latest trends- and POST about it. which i what i love, but a bit stupid also. because i don't want an ephemeral wardrobe but a long lasting one.

    i love my clothes so much and i don't want to part with them! you made a great decision! you can do it!!!!


  3. ik heb een paar dagen geleden pas eens geteld hoeveel kledingstukken er in mijn kast hangen en ik zit nu ongeveer rond 170, ondergoed en de dingen die in de was liggen en gemaakt/aangepast moeten worden niet meegeteld. Veel dingen daarvan draag ik niet omdat ik niet weet dat ik ze heb en onderaan in m'n kast belanden. Zo'n zonde, dus weet je wat, Ik ga met je meedoen tot 1 juli ;) je staat er niet alleen voor! x

  4. Ik heb ook eens zo'n moment gehad dat ik echt te veel gekocht. En vooral zoveel onnodige dingen, die ik dan amper aandeed. Nu ben ik echt een hele kritische shopper, het liefste van al ga ik nog alleen shoppen zodat niet kan zeggen 'Ohja dat is zo mooi, koop het!'. Alleen is het zoveel makkelijker om echt na te denken of ik het nodig heb of niet!
    Ik ben nu ook even op een shopping break, even aan doen wat ik heb voor het moment! :) En idd met dit stom weer heb ik nog niet eens mijn zomer kleren kunnen aanraken...

  5. love the photo,so much inspiration in just one photo!

  6. heeeeeeerlijke post, heel herkenbaar en open en leuk geschreven! ik geloof dat je het kunt! Met mijn moeilijke persoonlijke periode right now ben ik ook veel meer geneigd om te emo shoppen. Ik moet het echt onder controle krijgen.


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