Do you like to shop alone or with a friend(s)? I am generally a person who enjoys shopping by myself. When alone, I can look at new lip gloss colors or try on 20 pairs of shoes without feeling like I am wasting someone else's time. The only exception to this is if it is someone I consider a TRUE SHOPPING BUDDY. My guidelines for granting this title depends on several factors:
1. ENDURANCE-To shop with me you have to be willing to go and go and go...8 hours, 10 hours, now that is a shopping trip. Also there is no time to be wasted over a long leisurely lunch, that is detracting from the purpose of our mission. Yes we will eat but it will be quick and inexpensive (that extra $10.00 spent on a sandwich could be used towards treating yourself to something new). Besides most of us don't need the extra carbs anyway.
2. VISIONARY-I want my shopping buddy to be able to consider the entire picture..how will this simple navy dress look when paired with a statement necklace, cute clutch and new shoes? Can she/he help you rationalize the purchase by quoting the latest style trends and colors and/or how it will be a foundation piece of your closet?
3. FLEXIBILITY- This quality goes along with endurance. No store should be unshopped (look, I just made up a new word). We will venture into high end retailers like Saks and Neiman Marcus as well as lower end H & M and TopShop. Wait...you say...how does a shopper over 45 i.e. justify going into H & M or someone whose clothing budget is not unlimited go into a designer store? You go to look, to feel the fabric, to see color combinations, new ways to tie the scarf you already have, etc etc.
4. HONESTY-This is a VERY VERY important attribute. Please do not say something is ok when you know it is not. I didn't say you cannot be tactful in your comments but if something does not flatter, then tell me and I promise to do the same. As someone who loves fashion and shops a lot (reminder this is different than buying) I may need you to tell me I deserve to splurge because it is such a great choice or maybe the opposite that something better awaits at our next destination.
There you have it, my thoughts on the characteristics I covet in a shopping buddy. I have to tell you these special people are few and far between. If you think you might be "the one" and willing to head out with me sometime soon, I am always ready to go.