Hey there friends, it’s been a long while.
I’ve been back at the shops for a month and a half now (well, not straight, that would be insane. I’d probably have died), and I think it’s time to update you all on my consumption!
Oh, yes, my consumption.
July 6th came in all its glory and I was able to celebrate the end of my year-long sabbatical from shopping by exploring the wonders of Portland, Oregon. If you know anything about Portland, you could probably imagine that it would be a top-notch place to find some quality goods of the local/used/ethical nature.
And you would be right.
While my closet had dwindled considerably and I was in rather dire need of things such as pants (the American and British versions), my first real stop was Powell’s City of Books. The name itself inspires one to new heights of rapid consumption. And consume I did. Powell’s is a great place (I could probably spend three days there, no sleep, and maybe make it through the whole store), and it boasts an impressive variety of both new and used books. On the first day, I walked away with more new (and used) volumes for my shelves than I care to admit. On the second trip, I gathered a few more. Oh the glory of being back with my dear friends, the books.
I also found myself some new and used clothing (some much-needed and some definitely not needed). I hit up my favourite clothing company, PrAna, for some new pants, and discovered the wonders of Buffalo Exchange, a large consignment store. Laden with new things I could honestly feel good about, I travelled north to Vancouver (another great city to find some quality goods of the local/used/ethical nature). Here I returned to my favourite local shop, Devil May Wear, and added to my collection.
On top of all this, I ordered goodies from my new favourite underwear place, PACT apparel (check it out. Fair trade, organic cotton, oh-so-soft and very comfortable. I’ve never met with better gitchies), and made a hefty order from Amazon (for what I amazingly could not find at Powell’s). I also finally got a few goods from a vendor I’ve been admiring for two years, UK’s Annie Greenabelle.
I may have got a little carried away.
I know I did practically a year’s worth of shopping in one go, but I remained under my budget. Almost everything was second-hand, locally made, or ethically made (much of it fully fair trade), and I have a hard time feeling bad about buying books.
My drawers are full again, my bookshelves are bursting, and I love everything I bought. I certainly did not need most of the things I’ve purchased over the last month, and after a year of being (relatively) happy with what I had, I am ready to go forward to consume mindfully. The year-long practice of reflection and deeper understanding of consumerism, especially my consumerism, has left me slower to buy and far less swayed by changing fashions.
I know it’ll take willpower to remain in the mindset of the last year. Hopefully I’ve learned and changed enough for it to be more natural as time goes on.
What my next steps are, I don’t yet know. If you have any ideas, leave me a comment!