The first were a lush, unusual peacock green by Cambio; the velvet glowed with alluring depth and luminosity. She bought them at a high-end boutique, where the myopic beauty misread the price tag, got to the cash, and found that, with tax, she was paying $320.
I, her prudent friend, flapped my hands in dismay: "You didn't!" But she knew they were special. She accessorizes them with everything from gold metallic jazz oxfords to these 4-inch fuchsia suede heels.
Used to me, Christine stayed serene. She pulled out the second pair, a deep sapphire in a similar cut, from Talbot's. She got them at 70% off last marked price for less than $20 all in.
She bought them because her girlfriend Jocelyn (also a teacher) thought that the peacock pants were considerably more cocktail lounge than teachers' lounge. (Mme. Christine teaches French, what else?)
Closing my eyes, I found both felt soft and supple. But the $300 Cambios had a zipper detail at the ankle, and there is that rich Italian colour. They deliver an emotional zing, a charisma, though the Talbot's were pleasing too. The price differential (a factor of 15) presents a value consideration: prudence or pizazz?
This is how she and I presently shop, mixing the splurge with the bargain. But we'd like to improve our habits so that we accumulate less.
Christine describes Jocelyn as one of those astute women who buy "three perfect pieces each season", to achieve a small but striking wardrobe. She doesn't pop into Winners (our TJ Maxx) like Christine and I might, hoping to find a treasure squished in somewhere; she finds such efforts dispiriting. Jocelyn, who recently returned from working for some years in Europe, exemplifies the "chic simple" principle of a small, nothing-extra wardrobe.
Would you have bought both? If only one, which?
Are you a "chic simple" advocate, more of a magpie–or some other mix?