Shopping: the thrill of the hunt?

19 Sep

I have a friend who loves TJ Maxx. I, on the other hand, walk into that store and immediately get overwhelmed. She sees shopping there as a hunt. I see it as too much — too many racks, too many sizes, too many brands, too many people rifling through it all. I gave up on discount stores like that several years ago because they make me anxious and lead to impulse buys that make no sense in my wardrobe.

But, after hearing for the 1,000th time the cute shirt/necklace/shoes/dress she was wearing came from TJ Maxx, which conveniently is right by our office,  I decided maybe I should try again. I’m much better at shopping since my self-imposed ban on discount stores. I have figured out, mostly, how to dress my body, which has settled into a steady shape and size since my boys were born. I also have culled the crap out my closet and figured out what things I still need. There is a list.

At the top of that list was a decent purse. After my last cheap Target bag shredded I decided to stop buying good-enough bags and get something well-made and big and neutral enough to use everyday for work. I headed to TJ Maxx and, after more hemming and hawing than I should probably admit, finally found this Cynthia Rowley purse.

I love this thing so much. It goes with just about anything and holds everything. The same day I bought it, I found a pair of nude Anne Klein pumps, which also have become a staple in my wardrobe.

Emboldened, I’ve gone back several times since then — and I have to admit, I’m still a little overwhelmed. I tend to shop the perimeter of the store because when I get too deep into the middle racks, I start feeling claustrophobic. But I managed to snag this blazer the other day.

I am not going to pay $$$ for a fuschia blazer. But for $30, I will wear that blazer happily with my Old Navy bird shirt.

So, what about you? Do you love the thrill of the hunt? Or, like me, do mountains of discount clothes make you a little anxious?


8 Responses to “Shopping: the thrill of the hunt?”

  1. RA September 19, 2012 at 9:40 am #

    Ohh, I am with you. I have found good things at discount stores, but I basically refuse to dig. Once I detect a lack of system or consistency about how sizes are grouped or something, I wash my hands of it. Same goes for the anarchic Old Navy clearance section. No like! But you found some nice stuff!

  2. Melissa September 19, 2012 at 10:21 am #

    I’m with you, completely overwhelmed if there’s too much. I can’t even shop at Kohl’s for that reason. It’s just too much and I give up after 10 minutes and leave. I really want to try TJMaxx..but I just haven’t found the courage.

  3. Becky September 19, 2012 at 10:38 am #

    I love TJ Maxx for purses and jewelry. But I mostly shop the perimeter of the clothes area too because it is overwhelming.

  4. Erica September 19, 2012 at 11:30 am #

    I love the thrill of the hunt but I find that most stuff I buy at discounty places tends to get culled out of my closet first. I used to be the biggest JCREW advocate ever but my body has been changing and now that stuff doesn’t fit me too well. Just the other day I discovered a bunch of good stuff at Anthro. Meh. I don’t know. I love spring clothes and can always find a lot. I WANT to love fall clothes but it’s hard because it’s so hot here for the first time all year so it seems weird.

  5. Jesabes September 19, 2012 at 11:30 am #

    It’s too much for me – especially the sizes, everything is always all jumbled together and even if I find something I like, it’s not the right size. Also, every time I walk into a place like that I leave with bags and bags of houseware/accessories stuff I don’t need.

  6. K September 19, 2012 at 1:30 pm #

    Discount stores and department stores make me sweaty and cagey. It’s just…too much.

  7. Lawyernomore September 19, 2012 at 3:08 pm #

    If I am looking for something specific, I cannot deal with it. But if I have time to kill over lunch or on a leisurely weekend afternoon, I don’t mind browsing those stores as much, and usually find something cute or useful. I think the keys for me are time and lack of pressure to find something.

  8. heycharliesue September 19, 2012 at 4:09 pm #

    I honed my TJ Maxx abilities in New England, where somehow the stores are less overwhelming? Have a more consistently excellent selection? I’m not sure.

    Now that I’m back in the SF area, I find that I know exactly where to look for things I like to buy: athletic wear, Runway, Women’s Knits, Shoes, Home, and that whole Socks/Lotions/Hair section. Knowing the places where I’m likely to buy means I can still browse leisurely while not getting completely overwhelmed.

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