Thursday, February 27, 2014

Struggling with a "Good Deal"

I get lots of offers, and I'm sure you do too.  Often, I find myself thinking about the offer a whole lot more than I really should, and a LOT more than the offer deserves...  How to sort this out?  Advice welcome; let me share with you my current dilemma.

I just received this in the mail.  I have a very well-documented love of Eileen Fisher clothing and design, so seeing this in my mail will of course immediate spark my interest - at least to see what she's got new and interesting for this season called "spring", which I don't understand, here in sub-zero Chicago...

Flip over the mailer, and I get more intrigued:
If there's ANYTHING I like more than a tidy list of garments, I don't know what it is.  Something in me mentally starts immediately going through my closet and checking the contents against the list...

But THEN, it gets worse!

This bad boy is inside the folder...

$25 off, for a minimum $50 purchase.  If I could limit myself to $50, this would be a hammering deal.  But...

So my dilemma is this:  $25 is not trivial, but $25 off of something that I don't need is a meaningless savings gesture as a part of a larger expenditure that was optional until I went to my mailbox.

Sigh...

32 comments:

  1. I am on a shopping fast right one, so I do not even open EF's email right now -- most of the time. The other day, slow day at work, with too much time on my hand, I did peruse her website, and lo and behold I could come up with a handful of very desirable items. Luckily I remembered eldest son's wish to finish his degree, and our promise to help him out. Besides, I have to remember that $25 off at EF is like getting a dollar off at Wal-Mart. :)

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  2. Be strong Janice. Unless you are currently in need / searching for a particular garment, it's still "spending" NOT "saving".
    ~ Martha

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    1. Ah Martha, there's the rub - I could easily go onto another 12-month shopping fast and be well and appropriately dressed for the next 365 days. Must pull out Paris photo montage and study to keep myself focused!

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    2. Wait and find something wonderful in Paris!
      Karen

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  3. Sigh indeed. It is a tough dilemma. I get the same feeling (urges) when I get these kinds of mailers. But I agree with with Fiddlestyx, buying something just because it's a deal, is not really a deal. Hard to hear, but necessary for most of us.

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  4. I love Eileen Fisher, however, as there are no EF stores in Vermont or N.H., $25.00 off becomes $15.00 when we have to pay $10.00 for shipping. Passing on that is a no-brainer.

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    1. See, it's so easy for me - I can practically roll downhill from my apartment to the EF store on State Street. And I really like the staff there - it's no struggle to go in and chat with them for a while. I've got ALL of the excuses...

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    2. I'm waiting for the day when E.F. takes a closer look at the demographics and opens a shop in Burlington, VT! If I was still living in Mass. I'd roll down that hill with you - clutching the coupon! Ah...to see items in real life again!

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    3. Same here. It's a lot easier to avoid temptation when all you find down that hill is Wal-Mart and Stages.

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  5. That is exactly the trap that marketing departments set for us consumers! If you don't need anything, then save your money...

    Bookbutterfly

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  6. It's good you ponder expenditures so long. Reacting too quickly often leads to mistakes. Sometimes I look at things online and revisit them again and again and again...if I have to visit too much then I probably did not need to get it too begin with. I have discovered there are usually other offers on the horizon.

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    1. This is the one thing that I've learned over and over again working on The Vivienne Files - there are ALWAYS more clothes. There's no reason to settle for anything less than ideal, if you have the patience to wait for the perfect items at the PERFECT TIME.

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  7. Very difficult indeed. As with any denial of pleasure, you must substitute something else of pleasure, otherwise not buying the lovely sweater/tunic/etc feels like punishment for some crime you did not commit. Keeping future treats in mind is always good, but I need something more immediate. Lately, I'm understanding that ACTIVITY is a good replacement for ITEMS. So, when tempted to purchase, why not treat yourself to an afternoon at a museum, snowshoeing in the park, or a concert instead?

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    1. Virginia, That's a wonderful idea! A get-together with a best friend (or 2 ) over coffee or tea would be a lovely way to spend an afternoon plus a lot cheaper!!
      I'd much rather have wonderful memories in my closet than more clothes......
      ~ Martha

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  8. I had to break a similar unhealthy relationship with Talbots. (Because I am the reincarnation of a Connecticut grandmother in a Volvo, apparently.) It helped to realize that they only sent me those coupons: 1) at the beginning of the season when nothing in the store is less than 200, or 2) at the end of the season, when the only things they have left for average size women are in puce ponte. It's like that guy in college who would ask me out every time he broke up with his (prettier) girlfriend--it was never really about me.

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    1. Ha! I love this comment, TinaD: "it was never really about me" !

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  9. I was shopping in Talbots yesterday for "replacement clothes" as the nearest Talbots to me is 3 1/2 hours away either in Halifax NS or Bangor ME. I had jeans, denim skirt, navy and white tee shirts and a navy belt. Salesclerk said "You don't have $300 yet (was hoping not to!) BUT if you spent a bit more you get $100 off". So for that money I got another tee shirt, a cardigan and two pairs of socks - apart from the cardigan which was on sale - the rest could be also considered replacement pieces - as we are on holiday in Florida and it is still in the minus Celius temperatures with snow most days at home I figured this was a deal - so Janice you might just need cheering up in this awful winter and treat yourself to something new from EF and take advantage of the deal!

    Sandra

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    1. I used that $100 off a $300 purchase too. I recently had my colors done and was put on a "black diet." (White hair, fair skin, blue eyes). So, I needed to replace my old basic go every where black suit with a new one in navy with a shorter jacket (as also recommended by the stylist). I was able to get the new style new color basic pantsuit for a much better price with this deal. But like Vivienne, I have to stay WARY of these "deals."

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  10. What about something basic, like one of the silk tees? Or a replacement for one of the basic items you love that will wear out eventually? I know, I'm an enabler. ;-)

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    1. Following a link on another blog (wink, wink) I found something from EF that I had been contemplating for about 50% off. I bought it, and now I can stop frequenting the EF site to gaze at the thing. I have that 25% off coupon here somewhere--I hid it from myself.

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  11. It seems to me that you have a very clear and focused idea of your wardrobe, what is in and out, what is on the way out, and how you see it evolving. With that in mind, I would guess that you also know what items you will be needing in the not-too-distant future; and what items you are not so keen on (there are always some). And do you maybe have a luxe item that you yearn for and that would extend your wardrobe in a special and maybe slightly new direction? Rather than go for the everyday (boring) items that are the workhorses but that you have to buy anyway, I would look for such a piece, and I would try and see if there are one or two garments that I was not so keen on and to which this could be a successor. That would lift your mood and thus the whole tone of your current portfolio, and you would do it at a cost that was less than it might otherwise be. (And if you wait until it is on offer, they may not have your size any more ....)

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  12. I know the feeling when faced with this dilemma, but I'm getting better at logical resistance. As Anonymous said, you know what you can use. If you really need nothing, then look at the collection with an eye toward adding something of value. Do you see a piece that you think is outstanding, that calls to you even when you put the mailing away? Does it belong in your wardrobe and can you envision yourself wearing it with joy? Then, invest in it. But be sure to be honest with yourself. It must be an article that you will get much enjoyment from and which you will wear frequently.

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  13. Well, I'd take a look at your wardrobe - are there any pieces that aren't quite "right" or one or two that are on their way out? If so, this might be a good opportunity to replace those items. Murphy's law always seems to be in overdrive with regard to my wardrobe - when I really need something I can't find it, or simply don't have the time to devote to shopping for it! My only rule would be (a) could I get enough wear out of the item to justify the cost even with a discount? And (b) do I absolutely love it? If I can answer "yes" then no regrets about buying the item.

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  14. I have a similar problem with Brooks Brothers. I get these cards for so much off a particular sale but $25 or even $40 off a $100 sale is hard to do...the prices are high, so you are still spending a good deal of money and if you don't need anything, you don't need it!

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  15. There has to be room in every wardrobe for a coup de Coeur, but if you don't need it and you don't LOVE love it, then just throw the mailer away. There will be other deals at times that make more sense for you. Tomorrow you will have forgotten all about it.

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  16. Nancy @ 10:23 nailed it. Bon courage!

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  17. Janice, you have great sense about your wardrobe. I want to be like you. I have a problem with Eileen Fisher, I would say that I am an EileenFisherholic. I bought another silk t shirt, even though I already have at least 25 or 30 of them, just because it was on big sale from Nordstrom. I need your determination.

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  18. This was me this week with the Land's End 25% sale. I filled my shopping cart with heaps of stuff I 'liked' but decided to do my next Project 333 audit before I bought anything. As a result today I bought 5 items even though the sale ended and I was paying full price. One item was a replacement, one was from my 'Shopping for' list and 3 were alternatives for things that worked really well last season. In the end it cost less than when I was 'sale' shopping on a whim!

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  19. So I guess I shouldn't tell you that Eileen Fisher is currently on Gilt! :-D I thought of you first thing when I saw it today LOL.

    http://www.gilt.com/sale/women/eileen-fisher-4191

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  20. I don't think it's about the clothes, however many good experiences you have with them. I think it's about the pose. She reminds of a dancer and suggests activity. It suggests that instead of getting around to the activity you can just buy and wear the clothes and look and feel ready for activity.

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  21. Very well said and so true. But still hard to resist sometimes...
    Sam

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  22. The marketers are so very clever aren't they? They know just how to tempt us!

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