Mar 23, 2011
Kind readers, I won't lie: I've indulged in a few impulsive pick-ups in my day -- shopping, I mean.
I am not a spendthrift, however -- just the opposite -- and other than my local Rite Aid (when I need nail polish) I avoid stores.
You're probably wondering, well, how about those saddle shoes you were obsessing over the other day? Friends, they came, I saw, and I conquered my desire for saddle shoes; plus the toe box was too narrow. Back to Zappos they go!
Walking the dogs yesterday, I chanced upon these Opening Ceremony brand men's gray suede shoes in great condition in the trash. The price, as they say, was right, and the fit, perfect. Saddle shoes can wait for the sales.
At the flea market -- completely cash-based, obviously -- I'm always clear-headed and cautious. A typical purchase is $2 kid gloves or vintage fabric, or a few $1 patterns, many of which become giveaways (I'm always thinking of your needs, readers).
With most other things like clothes, I'm happy to shop the Salvation Army or make it myself (with the exception of socks).
Parenthetically, one of the best things about Amazon is that you can create a "wish list." Nearly everything I've ever put on my wish list I've revisited later and decided against purchasing. Try it -- it's a great tool.
No, when it comes to shopping, I have only two weaknesses: Etsy, and eBay.
Actually, since the only things I've ever bought on Etsy are patterns, it hasn't been that big a problem. Do I sew every pattern I purchase? Of course not. But I have sewn roughly half, with about half of the rest on my to-do list. A few, admittedly, are filed under "What Was I Thinking?"
But we're talking $5 here, $5 there (and often less), nothing big. Some people buy Soy Lattes at Starbucks, I buy patterns. And I always shop around (many patterns are listed by multiple sellers at wildly varying prices).
Here's my latest, which can be had for $4, $6, or $12 -- take your pick.
Ebay is my true weakness. To be clear: I will not purchase things I don't have the money for upfront. I would never go into debt for, say, a doll...or five or six.
Or their wardrobe.
Or stinky luggage. (Note to self: remove months-old cat litter, execute Plan B.)
Or vintage wool bathing suits. (A passing phase.)
So you can probably guess where this is leading. On Friday I made an impulse purchase of the worst -- or best -- kind, depending on how you look at it.
The way I see it is this: I haven't bought one sewing machine yet all year and here it is nearly April, my birthday month. I've had an intense last few weeks, and it's healthy to indulge now and then, right? If I hate it, I can clean it up a bit and sell it.
I've been looking at these on eBay, Craigslist, and at the flea market for a long time and while the one I chose wasn't the bargain of the century, it wasn't high for Featherweights (due, in part to the machine needing a new belt and coming in a somewhat beat up case).
I should receive it any day now and friends, I can't wait. Shouldn't a man who writes about vintage sewing machines have working knowledge of a Featherweight? Of course he should (I think).
In closing, dear readers, confession time:
Have you ever made a sewing-related impulse purchase? Do you tend to be more impulsive with sewing purchases or are you the same way with everything you buy?
Fabric, sewing machines, notions, other -- we don't judge at MPB.
Confess and absolve yourselves!