How does it feel after going through a year long shopping ban?

Before we start…some companies I’ve been annoyed with lately:



Why the hell are some franchises (like ones in a hotel) not under the Starbucks Rewards program?

That’s just a load of CRAP. The girl told me: We’re not a normal Starbucks. We’re under the hotel.

I had to shell out $0.60 for the soymilk I normally get for free and I’m really annoyed.

Also, they don’t tell you the total before swiping your card and they don’t ask if you want the receipt.

By the time you check the receipt, you realize there’s a mistake, your drink is already waiting for you and you’d feel like a complete ass if you tell them you don’t want the drink because they charged you for the extras you normally get for free.

Starbucks, get your f*cking act together.

Tarte and MAC

Their product packaging is just horrific. Who the hell is on their product packaging team?

I love using both products, but the Tarte Clean Slate primer makes you waste 20% of the product because of it’s dumbass packaging. I love the product but the packaging is just wasteful and stupid. Not buying it any more until they fix it.

The MAC longwear concealer pump just sucks. I like the product, but if I have to keep decanting it into a little tub to be able to use it, I’m not buying it any more.

Thanks Estee Lauder for buying over the company and not paying attention to makeup waste.



The whole experience feels strangely anti-climatic.

I went on a ban from November 2009 until the end of December 2010.

Now that I can buy whatever I want… I can’t choose.

Okay, that was a lie. What I mean, is I want so many things, I won’t let myself buy them all because of that ban! 😛

Better? 😉

I know there are a ton of other bloggers going through this ban right now. Some 3 months, some 6 months, and some a year.

I wonder if this is a new trend in the PF blogosphere: bans for whatever reason.

Whatever it is, I say go for it and let us all know how it turns out.


For my experience, it was a hit and miss. Some days, I really wanted stuff.

Other days, I went into the stores, touched every piece in there (even tried on a couple of things), but I just wasn’t interested.

Or I wouldn’t pull the trigger on my shopping ban for it. That’s how uninterested I was.

Even better, a lot of stores were really heavy on the neutrals in 2010, I guess as a sign of the conservative approach we should all take in a recessionary period?

The good news for me, is I am not really a fan of neutrals* so there wasn’t much choice for me, even if I liked something.

*Yes I own a lot of grey, but my new thing is not to buy any neutrals or solid colours. Only patterns.

I also worked a lot, and when I work, I don’t think about shopping because I’m busy working. It’s a lovely cycle.

It’s when I don’t work, that shopping temptation creeps in, such as when I am in between contracts or on the weekends.

Overall, the ban really helped.

I’ve really been learning how to keep temptation under control since I started blogging in late 2006/early 2007, but this is another level of growth in willpower I didn’t have before.

I am also not planning on specifically spending $1000 on some shopping spree at the start of the year because it would just negate what I learned from the last year.


  • I have a lot of stuff already (am getting rid of a bag of stuff soon!)
  • No one notices what you wear or what you don’t wear. I work with guys, so fashion? Not many notice.**
  • You can really shop your own closet (silly me!)
  • Organizing your closet makes you see how much you have
  • …and taking pictures of everything you own and putting it on your iPod Touch, even more so
  • You don’t need only neutrals to make everything match (I wear a lot of brights together)
  • Accessories are my best allies — necklaces and belts in particular
  • Layer, layer, layer!
  • Be picky about what you’re buying. Do you really need another solid coloured top in a different colour?
**I guess if I went Lady Gaga on them, or tarted it up they would notice. But most don’t care.


But this wouldn’t be a fun post if I didn’t tell you what I’m lusting after, now would you?

My new rules for 2011:

  • Don’t waste money on items just because they’re are on sale.
  • Love quality first.
  • No more solid colours for the year
  • No more neutrals for the year
  • No repeats of stuff I already own (I am in the midst of cataloging)
  • Only spend on really interesting, patterned and different pieces (not polkadots for example)
  • Think about where I’ll be living by the end of the year***
  • Be cognizant of spending and don’t spend in the heat of the moment on impulse (*guilty look*)

So without further ado, this is what is really high on my wish list****.

*** I won’t be subject to super long, cold winters any more, I hope.
*** Meaning it passed my criterion above. I’m going for statement pieces this year.


Before you all groan at the sight of the word “Anthropologie”, I totally get it.

It looks a bit like flea market stuff at times, the quality is suspect on a lot of items, and the prices are insane.

Check out this fun game by Regretsy: Anthropologie or Etsy? Can you even tell? 😛

I choke when I see a dress on there for $398 CAD. Who has that kind of money to burn?

That said, when I look at a few of their pieces, I just can’t find anything similar anywhere else, and that is what I’m going for. Special.

Also, as a fun side note, did you know that Anthropologie’s target market is women aged 30-45, well-read, well-traveled, educated and with a household income approaching $200,000? Source

Their branding is incredible, from the smell of the store down to the French flea market feel they are going for. Urban Outfitters (the parent brand) really knows what they’re doing with that store.

Now their prices make so much more sense, don’t they? 🙂

I guess I could be considered in their target market (I’m approaching 30), but when I read other style blogs, there are girls much younger than me obsessed with the brand.

I always felt like the brand was aimed towards 22 year old girls who were a size 0.

(And possibly filthy rich as well, to be able to afford all of that and make their rent).

I swear, these girls can name every piece in their closet from Anthropologie down to the season they bought it in.

Here’s what I’m interested in, but I’m holding off for whatever reason. Price, availability, or just can’t get over the $$ hump:

Anthropologie Facile Camp Shirts – $88 CAD each

Read about my obsession with the Facile Camp Shirts here.

Anthropologie – Seaside Fields Dress – $168 CAD

As mentioned before, the store is a hit and miss for me. The only item I absolutely had to try on was this dress, out of everything in the store.

It is also more than I’ve ever paid for any dress in my doggone life, and I thought I’d absolutely hate the colour combination but I loved it!

Here’s my short Seaside Fields Dressing Room Review:

The top part felt awesome. Silk, thick, ruffled, soft.

The size 6 was slightly baggy on me, and so was the Size 4, but I’d probably buy the 6 even though it was just a bit big in the hips, because I’m a rectangle shape. Better too much fabric than too little.

The skirt was nice too, but it felt more like a corduroy canvas, and the print was something I thought I’d hate, but ended up loving because it’s more of a dark purple indigo colour on grey.

(Matched my necklace that day, without any planning on my part.)


No faint of heart colours or patterns here!

This is the year of bursting out like some crazed fashion butterfly.

Okay, not really, but I am noticing that I don’t really experiment in patterns outside of my wrap dresses and this would be a nice change.

This skirt just appeared on the site, and the moment I saw it, it caught my eye.

I just need to be sure it’ll fit and if the quality will be good, hence why I need to see it in person and try it on.

I may end up hating it 🙂 Who knows?

I know BF will call it ugly* but there’s something daring about it.

Very artsy, bold, and beautiful.Plus I love poppies.

*Boys. What do they know about style? 😛

That’s it. That’s all I’m thinking about right now.

So far we’re up to $300 CAD this year plus taxes right? So $336 then.

But I still haven’t purchased a thing.

I also have my eyes on some gorgeous dresses from Sunday Brunch Dress Shop.

Yoana Baraschi All Night Long Dress – $270.20

I don’t normally gravitate towards wearing black, but this is gorgeous. Check out this beauty here.

But where would I wear it? Hmm….

Mel en Stel Cup of Tea Ruffle Dress – $350

I have wanted this dress from the first day I saw it on the site. I still want it.



Then I take a look at beautiful things like these Philippe Tournaire Architectural Rings and I SWOON!

For some of them, it says “Consultez nous pour obtenir un devis*“, which translated into English says:

If you have to ask the price, then you can’t freaking afford it.

Move along, you voyeur.

*OK not really. Literal translation is “Ask us to obtain a quote”, also known as “Price available upon request”.

Still. Aren’t they just stunning?

If only I had a bajillion EUR. I’d snag one of each 😛

I clicked around on some of the rings and they kind of start around 1500 EUR. A bit too rich for this girl’s blood.

The way I see it, I wouldn’t be able to eat a ring if I needed the money 😛

So, what do you think about all of these shopping bans going around in 2011?

Or anything else on your mind? Rant if you’d like.

About the Author

Just a girl trying to find a balance between being a Shopaholic and a Saver. I cleared $60,000 in 18 months earning $65,000 gross/year. Now I am self-employed, and you can read more about my story here, or visit my other blog: The Everyday Minimalist.