UMass Boston's independent, student-run newspaper

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

Straight Outta Flint

Straight Outta Flint
Straight Outta Flint

I am probably the first to admit it. I am a total fashion slut.

On my iGoogle, one of my custom news gadgets is set to search for fashion-related stories. On Oct. 1, the story “Mary Portas bags an eyeful of Louis Vuitton in Paris,” printed in the UK paper “The Telegraph” came up.

Basically, it’s about the author’s experience being at the opening of the new Louis Vuitton flagship store on the Champs Elysees in Paris and her visit back there after it opened in 2005.

Ugh. Lucky. I wish I could have been there.

Anyway, the author describes it as a place that “you can’t ignore” and says that “you need to get your backside down there.”

People flocked to the opening of the LV “flagshop” (which, by the way, looks amazing) two years ago, and it was “probably the most highly anticipated launch of a luxury store for a decade.”

Now, are we really so into our stores, our brands, our clothing, jewelry and accessories that it becomes reason to report on the inside of a store? The answer, for a vast majority of us, is yes. Shopping is an experience, like rock climbing, only not as exciting for some. Nor as dangerous…to anything except your wallet.

The answer for myself is also a yes. Hello, my name is Amanda, and I am a consumerist. (Ouch, that hurt, just a little bit.)

I will buy stuff from anywhere. If I like it, I’ll find a way to make sure it ends up in my possession. It’s a horrible way of doing things, but I just can’t help myself.

From a prized $3 Goodwill blazer that I had for four years, to my brand new, $128 faux fur-lined jacket from Abercrombie and Fitch; from a skirt on clearance at Old Navy for $4, to a $32 houndstooth skirt from Hot Topic; from $85 hoodies from ClandestineIndustries.com, to $10 hoodies from Wal-Mart.

I don’t care where it’s from. If I like it, it’s mine and I couldn’t care less about any superficial distinctions between styles, subcultures, brands, whatever.

Why does it matter? The clothes are cut from similar patterns. The aesthetic is what makes them different, but so many elements are borrowed between that I really don’t see the big deal.

But again, I guess it’s because I don’t really care where my clothes come from, paired with the fact that I’m in a somewhat lucky position that I don’t have to pay for rent or food or car insurance or bills right now, that I just feel like my income is disposable.

Just like buying stuff from damn near anywhere, this is a horrible way of thinking about things. Income is never disposable. I just can’t change my habit.

And I buy myself things when I feel sad. Is it another product of our capitalist, consumer ways? Probably. The worst part is that it really doesn’t work. I mean, it’s nice when it comes in the mail, or when I’m walking around the mall with the bag, but it’s such a quick elation. It’s like a drug. I’m addicted to shopping and spending my money. It’s a horrible habit that I know I’m not alone in.

Now, excuse me while I check to see if my new $80 sweater is on its way. I’m hoping it’ll get really cold next week.