Growing up, my mum always shopped from the best of places she could afford because she wanted us to be happy but I always thought the things she bought were too expensive especially because of how much I complained about them every time.
I remember my first shopping alone, the excitement and the eagerness to finally get things I liked without the gazing eyes of my mum. I strolled into a Primark Store in the heart of Manchester City Centre to shop with a friend.
My focus was on getting more clothing and footwear that will last me for at least awhile. I passed by H&M, M&S, House of Fraser, River Island, Debenhams, Next and so many other stores because I just assumed they will be more expensive and I would only be able to shop for a few things.
I knew these stores probably had more quality things but I was after quantity.
When I got to the counter after shopping, the cashier gave me that look like, “Really”. I left the store with four extra large bags and other smaller ones.
The first few months, I rocked all the jewelry and clothes I had gotten but I noticed the bags began to change colour and the some clothes became worn out within weeks. Maybe I was washing them too often or I did not use them well but this experience taught me a great lesson.
When I started feeling uncomfortable with the worn out clothes I went shopping with some of my girls and they mentioned all the stores they were going to that day. They were the very stores I had avoided before.
Cut your coat according to your size
Fear gripped my heart because I believe in the principle “Cut your coat according to your size” and I wanted to get a couple of things, but after that day I think I have a different understanding of that statement.
These stores I dreaded entering had my style of clothing, simple and classy; not too flashy or bright. I like dull colours….lol. I checked the price tags and I was shocked at how affordable they were. I thought to myself, “Why did I always assume they were expensive?”.
Even when they were not having sales, the price difference from the cheaper stores were quite minimal. Then I found out that some stores even had sales outlets….what a relief!
This is not to discredit Primark or stores that are quite affordable. I actually went back to Primark and I realized they had and still have some things that are quite good and are quality.
Conclusion and Stay hydrated
I also came across an online store that was even cheaper and they had really quality clothes as well. I think for me I learnt some valuable lessons I will like to share:
- Never Assume! I should have walked into all the stores from the get-go and made my analysis myself,
- Always pick quality over quantity. I have some clothes I bought years ago that I still wear.
- That it is cheap, does not mean the quality is poor! And vice-versa
- Wear comfortable shoes and clothing to shop. You need maximum comfort on a day like this.
- Do not just buy clothing by checking the sizes, company sizes vary. You can be a size 10 in New Look and a size 12 in Marks and Spencer.
- Before buying your bras, go for bust fitting to buy the right size! It is poor health for your breast if you buy under-size or oversize.
- Stay hydrated!!! You do not want to pass-out from shopping.