Wednesday, February 11, 2009

My Shopaholic Confession

My own Cinderella glass slipper!

Hi! My name is KCee and I’m a shopaholic!

I can’t really remember when I started being a shopaholic. All I know is that during my childhood, my sister and I always spend weekend shopping with our Mom.

Yes. Mom.

So it must be Mom

Our mother is a classic model of a compulsive buyer slash hoarder (in a positive way, if I may add). If she finds a top she really likes, expect her to have it in all colors available. She seldom stumbles upon stuff that suits her taste, so she compensates for it whenever she gets lucky.

Mom is also in the habit of stacking our kitchen shelf with grocery items like there’s going to be a food shortage anytime soon. Well, not only the kitchen shelf, but she buys almost everything in bulk. The good side of it is that we never had supply problems; everything is well provided, and always with a little extra. From rice to scotch tape, you name it, she never runs out of it. She even pays everything in advance. The concept of cash flow for her is um, utterly ridiculous.

It’s still a mystery how she managed the family budget well, given her purchasing passion and generosity. We are a middle class family that doesn’t own a single credit card and yet we survived.

She’s my idol.

My genes undoubtedly have it.

The Hoarder in Me

Shopping gives out a different kind of ‘psychological high’ I’m sure most women can relate to. It turns into an addiction nobody wants to be cured of; and what’s pleasantly worse, the presence of sales even turns it into an obsession.

The only time I allow myself to splurge is whenever there’s a sale. It excites me like crazy; everything with the “% OFF” sign makes my eyes sparkle with glee while my knees go wobbly. But it also brings out the hoarder in me; buying stuff meant for future use – toys, clothes, knick-knacks or other potential gifts. I always rationalize that splurging on discounted items is actually practical, as it saves one a lot of time and money later on. No, I don’t have loads of cash to spend or a single credit card to swipe, but when I do spend, it has to be in the form of an investment.

Sometimes, I get 3 of the same stuff in one go. Then I check out if they have it in my Mom’s, sister’s, aunt’s, cousin’s and friend’s size too. I leave the store looking silly with big shopping bags like I spent half of my paycheck, when it only cost me so little. So whenever a birthday is coming up, regardless if it’s my little girl’s classmate, a friend, cousin, officemate, or Mom’s friend's-son's-daughter, I just dig in my stash and choose an age-appropriate gift. It’s like a one stop mini store in my room where anyone can get gifts for all occasions. Just tell me your budget and I'm sure to have the perfect gift for you, complete with gift wrap!

Now, that’s how hoarding becomes an investment. You don't realize it until you need it. :)

I love buying my little girl sparkly blings!

The Wiser Shopaholic

I remember when I was 8 years old and my Dad promised to buy me a shoulder bag. He was a military officer always on provincial mission, yet he spared some of his free time to take me to the mall to choose the bag that I want (yeah, behind the uniform is a really sweet man!).

He still smiles at the memory both of us vividly remember. We spent most of the afternoon mall hopping, not only because I loved checking out every bag design there is, but I refused to choose a bag that I thought was expensive. He said that at 8 years old, I already knew how to shop wisely and untiringly at that.

He saw the sign.

They say shopaholics don’t have a budget; sky is always the limit even if it means a busted credit card and a hole in the pocket. This is a fallacy and so not true.

I always advise people never to buy branded items at regular price unless they really have to, because there will always be a sale. Patience is not only a virtue, it’s also rewarding.

Well, it really takes some energy and patience to be the wiser shopaholic. For someone like me who can spend the whole day visiting shops, bazaars, haggling or flipping tags to check out the prices, it’s an easy feat. That's how I get the best deals even without the big sale poster flashing across the shop window. I love it so much I can make a career out of it.

This bag makes me feel like a celebrity! Got it on sale for only P380

Let me share one of the best shopaholic moments I had: I got Florsheim shoes for kids (you know that those babies normally cost up to P1,500 the most) at the mall unbelievably priced at P100 each! There was no sign whatsoever that they were on sale; all I did was to flip the shoe and read the numbers.

Opportunities like this don’t come everyday so one has to decide quickly on the spot while it’s still there waiting to be grabbed. I left the store doing the happy dance carrying 10 boxes (for 10 lucky kids - I still don’t know who!) while the rest of the shoppers were left in awe, probably thinking I’m rich to buy that much. ^^ If they only knew, it just took a little effort to find that treasure.

Some of my good finds:

Memo bag from P1,350 to P350!

Authentic Fila sporty bag from P800 to P229!

Brand new pink Jordache top for the unbelievable price of P35!

My Shopaholic Fantasy

The ultimate shopaholic fantasy for me would be shopping like royalty in a big mall closed exclusively for me. I get to pick whatever I want without checking the price and I will have no worries of credit card bills because a prince in a faraway kingdom will take care of the tab. Or, to win a shopping spree where I can have all I can grab inside a big department store under time pressure. Some fantasy huh?

Well until my fantasy comes true, I’m going to fulfill a more realistic one first, because the well-loved-famous-book-turned-movie “Confessions of a Shopaholic” is hitting the theaters soon! I’m so excited to see Rebecca Bloomwood in action! Care to join me?

Catch “Confessions of a Shopaholic” in Cinemas on February 18, 2009!