Disclaimer: So, in all transparency, it's not a science. And it absolutely never has to be. BUT, if you are like me, and you love having a plan and purpose for just about everything you do (where my paper planner gals at?), then this article is for you. And if you are one of those talented and wildly gifted shoppers who can show up with or without a plan AND stay focused while browsing, then get it, boo. Get it.
Many a time, I have had a "kind of" shopping plan... up until I step through those glorious boutique doors. I am then immediately distracted by all of the pretty sweaters, unique jeans, and craft jewelry. Riding my high, I arrive home and unpack all of my newness upon my bed- only to find that somehow, I forgot to even look for a dusty blue dress for Olivia's wedding... a wedding that's been on my planner and heart for months now... and that is of course, this weekend. And now I have 3 more black tops and 2 more wide-leg jeans that I for sure do not need. Crap, Dez.
This all too often occurrence (and realization of such), paired my with off the wall purchases (I am drawn to grandma vintage and costume-like, sparkly everything), caused the much needed development off on-task shopping methods...
So, if you're like my "previously" distracted self (yes, previously-these methods work babes), then here are my best boutique browsing methods for wild success in this big, beautiful, everything-is-pretty world:
1. Make a plan. But no really girl, make a for real plan. It can be as simple as writing a note in your phone, while browsing your closet. And more importantly, stick to the plan. Be real with yourself over that sale item that you are literally just shopping-high over ONLY because it's on sale. Be real with yourself over that 1,000th pair of "but I need these" denim. If you need a skirt for Karen's going-away happy hour, then JUST go for that. Lovingly slap that wrist of yours when you feel your legs begin to move toward the booties. Be your inner personal shopper (and bank account manager) when you slip up and find yourself in the dressing room, with yet another striped sweater. (Side note- if it brings you joy, with the whole Kondo-inspired movement, then babe, duh- get it; we all have those times when we find the magic that we were not looking for. But overall, do your best to stick with the plan.)
2. Take breaks and regroup. My regrouping involves coffee. Lots of coffee. And when I am sticking with my plan, and I have hit up my favorite 2 boutiques, AND I am STILL not finding that dusty blue dress... then, I'll have my Dark Heart Coffee mental break (my personal, Loveland favorite). Here, I can sip on my nitro cold brew, revisit my list, and I can prepare myself for my next hour or three, of shopping wins.
3. Enlist a friend. One of my favorite ways to stick with my plan is to call on homie for support. My shopping girlfriends are real with me. And my best babe rarely falls for the potential high, which absolutely keeps me on track. We share what we are looking for before we go, and if we cannot shop together, then we snap and text dressing room pics for bestie guidance. And it super works, especially when you blackout over that sequin jacket, and your text alert reads, "Girl, are you serious?"
4. Pinterest is life. And it's free! I have Pinterest boards for everything, and my fashion ones have made shopping both inspiring and easy. I wake up on a Wednesday and wish I had a rose-colored tee to go with today's choice of darker denim and cream tennies. But then I wonder what else I would pair a rose-colored tee with, after my dream look is complete. That's when I go to my beloved Pinterest. I utilize it often- one, to stay on track, and two, to explore a variety of ways to mix up my pieces and style. I also pull it up when I'm on my actual shopping trips; if I find a piece that I love and it's definitely, maybe, not-so-much on-track with my plan, BUT it IS an essential piece that I know I would wear a ton. And in that case, I search ways to wear it on my Pinterest app, and boom, I am able to make a research-based decision right then and there. (And also after texting my best girl for extra backup, of course.) Also, speaking of your homie again, sharing Pinterest boards can also help with on-task browsing and fashion hunts. Maybe she might find a piece that I have been looking for, while out and about on her casual Target lunch break!
So, this article can actually seem kind of hilarious in it's strictness- and I'm very much seeing how potentially silly my personal spending firmness can be at times. BUT, it very much works for me. I come home with things that I love. I find the missing pieces to my dream outfits. I avoid those unnecessary purchases. I feel good and confident in trusting myself and my shopping adventures. I avoid the boutique-binge... anddd I always find that damn perfect dusty blue dress.