Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Online Shopping?

Crystal Quartz & Pearl Three-Strand Bracelet
This evening I thought it would be fun to go to the outlet stores and take a gander at a few of my favorite stores – J. Crew, Tommy Bahama, Converse and Nike. While I do live out in the boonies, for some reason long before I called this home someone had the idea to build an outlet shopping center right off the freeway here in town. And, over the years it has changed dramatically and has become quite the destination spot for people on vacation during the summer. I guess people really like to shop!

I like that it is outdoor in its architecture – not an enclosed mall which usually triggers my anxiety. Thank goodness as a teen there weren’t such things as malls so I never had to battle my anxiety to be a mall rat. What, where is this going – my mind drifts so easily these days. I’ll get back to my first point here and perhaps save the anxiety for a later post.

Kazuri Bead Coco Confection Collection Bracelet
While in J. Crew, I had an epiphany. Well, an epiphany sounds so dramatic, maybe it was just a massive ah-ah moment. While I have always loved shopping online I never quite understood why. Me, a person who is quite tactile, being happier seeing and buying items online rather than going through store after store touching and feeling everything. This fact has always been a bit of a disconnect for me…until tonight. If you follow my blog you might know that I was so very lucky to have a mom who was a talented seamstress and an aunt who was an equally talented patternmaker and tailor. Every piece I wore was usually from my own drawing and made from a fabric of my choosing; so I never saw more than one-of-a-kind designs hanging in my closet. I actually did not have a “store-bought” piece of clothing until I was in high school and begged my mom to buy me a dress at the store! 

What developed out of all of that is this – I do not like to see several identical items hanging on a rack or folded neatly side by side by side n a shelf or table. I don’t like knowing that at any moment in time, if I was wearing one of those identical pieces of clothing, I might meet up with someone wearing the exact same piece. Weird, I know. As a side observation, I think this is why, when living in San Francisco and New York, I loved shopping at Bergdorf, Neiman-Marcus, Saks and Barneys and shied away from Bloomingdale's and Macy’s (which freaked me out totally!). Looking back, I don’t remember seeing dozens of identical items being merchandised all at the same time in the stores I loved.

Brown & Gold Lampwork Bead Bangle
All of that seems to be leading to this. I like online shopping because at any given time, I am only seeing one garment or item. Yes, I know there are thousands in stock that are being sent around the world; but somehow that fact doesn’t bother me. In exchange for the lack of tactile ability, I like being able to read about any piece I see. Consequently, online shopping sites with no product description really don’t cut it with me. I like words and I like knowing what I am buying. Once again I don’t know where all of this is going but I do know that my shopping habits all make sense to me now – well, not all of my shopping habits, but at least some of them! I also know that my “fear of multiples” out in the world is what drives my jewelry business and my lust for product content is quite apparent in my biz. I really only make three to five of most designs and if you shop my online store you know that I would rather error on the side of too many words than not telling the whole story and giving you all the info you need so you are happy with your pieces when you get them home.

Now, I am not sure there is a way to wrap this up so I’ll just close by saying no matter where we are in life we are always discovering something new about who we are. And, tonight, after all these years, I finally understand some of my fascination with online shopping and I will sleep better for the knowing!