If you’ve ever been in a store and seen some poor woman “of a certain age” being helped by a friend, her husband and a sales assistant in choosing something to wear, you know how frustrating it can be for an onlooker.
I found myself in this position yesterday. There was a dear little lady, in her late fifties and definitely sporting the thickened waist we all seem to acquire at some stage, trying on a hideous frock. Huge pattern, wrong colour, too tight, too short and just too …
I was so upset I had to walk out. I chose to keep my mouth firmly shut because they were doing such a great job of talking her into the monstrosity it was unlikely she would have welcomed any other input.
Why do so many of we women, no matter our age, feel it necessary to have someone else help in our decision making? Especially when it comes to clothes. Are we really so unsure of ourselves we cannot decide if something we try on actually works for us? Or not?
And of course, this is a habit that starts when we’re young. As soon as we are able, we go shopping with our girlfriends.
Like me you will remember going out with a bunch of giggling girls and coming home with something that was the wrong colour, the wrong shape and had blown your allowance totally. And all this because your best friend thought is was ‘divine’.
And I see little girls doing it today. They go out in gaggles, one of them is invariably carrying a “muffin top”, and they seem to have so much money! Sad to say they’re still making the mistakes we made. It’s obviously a generational thing.
I remember my Grandmother used to say “You might as well be out of the world as out of fashion”. How true it was.
But I digress …
Friends always have the best of intentions but not necessarily the same agenda when shopping. While you’re looking for a pair of pants they may be looking for shoes, which means you’re in the wrong shop … for them!
Likewise, your husband may not wish to say the wrong thing. If, like most women “of a certain age” you have gained a little weight, especially around the waist, he either doesn’t notice or doesn’t want to mention it – which is very sweet. Unfortunatelyit doesn’t help.
There are major advantages to shopping on your own. You can take a rest when you want and have a coffee in your time frame. And you don’t have to worry that your companion (girlfriend, husband or whatever) is feeling bored or that they have to be home by a certain time.
I have developed a passion for shopping on my own. I love being able to look at what I want, to look at and try on what I want and buy what I want! I have one dear friend who is the same; when we go out together we split up and arrange to meet at a particular coffee shop at a specific time. This only works if we’re out with a purpose and don’t want to wander.
I’m spending hard-earned money on my clothes so I like to make sure I get what I want.
My advice? Be like me (!) and when you go shopping, work to your own agenda rather than that of other people …