So I was always puzzled and slightly perplexed by my grandmother's habit of taking for. ever. to buy something. Nine times out of ten she'd come back from the store dissatisfied with the selection or the quality or the color choice... it was always something. I remember her coming home once with the "perfect" navy blue belt that had taken her ... wait for it... three years to find. Three years. If it had been me, I would have gone out once or twice and finally just settled on the next best thing to perfect. I wouldn't have had the patience to wait three years to buy something I wanted yesterday.
Well, I think I'm finally beginning to see the wisdom in taking this marathon approach to purchasing. Here's the thing: if I'm going to spend the money (of which there is precious little) than it should be exactly what I'm looking for. Why settle on something I only half-heartedly like? Or worse yet - what if I buy the second stringer, only to find the perfect something later on and at a better price?
This conscious way of consuming is just as applicable to things I'm not looking for but which catch my eye nonetheless. Now when I'm tempted to buy something I ask myself, "Do I really love this?" If the answer is no, I put it back. If the answer is yes, than I weigh whether it's worth the asking price. Using the "do I need it?" measuring stick is pointless - the answer is almost always no. Not that I don't take it into consideration. Just today I talked myself out of buying a more-perfect Christmas table runner because I already had a nice one at home.
Here is my short list of things, my very own "navy blue belts" if you will, that I have my eye out for but am willing to wait to find (though maybe not three years. I'm not that patient):
1. A Duvet Cover
We recently repainted our bedroom and I've been on a bedding hunt ever since. I've already bought and returned four different covers because they just weren't quite right. Then I came across the "Ditsy Pennats" bedding from Urban Outfitters and was certain I'd found "the one." Naturally, it's no longer available. Now it serves as my bench mark for the final purchase.
2. A White Ceramic Owl
Why? I love owl decor and there's an empty shelf on the media cabinet. Owls are in right now so you'd think I'd have my pick of the litter. Not so. Unless I want to pay at least $35 on etsy which seems overpriced since west elm was selling something similar for $8. But like the duvet cover, it's no longer available.
3. Framed Art
Removing the bookcase from the front room left us with a huge blank wall to fill. Large framed art is always expensive, so finding a cheap solution isn't going to be easy. I recently found a deal through one of those coupon websites that allowed me to create the artwork above for $6. It's an odd size though (13x20) which means it might be pricier to frame, not to mention it comes on "adhesive fabric" so it could be a total bust, but for $6 I'm willing to take my chances.
So Nannie C, thank you for teaching me the value in waiting patiently for the perfect something.
It's a lesson worth learning.