Different shades of charcoal and still not shopping



As I promised earlier this fall, I would not buy any new clothes for half a year. I’ve kept that promise, and the only thing I’ve bought are things I’ve really needed (stockings, winter shoes, socks). It’s been some strange months, and in order to avoid all the temptations, I’ve tried to avoid the usual suspects (H & M, Zara, Compton de Cottoniare and some small second hand shops here in Brussels). And incredible enough, it is working, in the sense that I don’t feel a strong urge to get new stuff, window shopping or magazine browsing is not all that bad (I know you don’t belive me).

But one day last week, as I looked at the things I had put together in bright daylight, it was totally grey. Not soft, sweet grey, but charcoal grey – losing color grey.

Well, the next day I put on some pink to balance the charcoal from the day before.

Good thing I’m arranging an exchange/swap party for my girlfriends here in Brussel some weeks from now. The idea is to swap clothes, scarfs, shoes, sun glasses, etc. you are tired of with your friends. We give the leftovers to Oxfam. My first exchange party started a discussion. This time, I’ve asked two Belgian redesigners Cloe Billiet (who is opening up Second Style in Brussels soon) and Saskia Videler to come and talk to us about redesigning old clothes. Thanks to Girl Geek Cloe Willaerts, who started Brussels Girl Geek Dinners, and was so kind to send a tweet to her community about my request, I was able to find the redesigners.

Hm, since I started my antishopping campaign, I have noticed that the world economy has taken a sharp dip. Don’t look at me!

9 thoughts on “Different shades of charcoal and still not shopping

  1. Ugh now I am missing H and M since there is no such store here in the tropics where I am at now.

    Anyway, I just found your blog while surfing the net.

  2. congrats! Bente. I was wondering how your effort was going–so loved the update. I have not purchased anything new, but I have bought a few used items at a local “Goodwill” for work and play. In fact my entire wardrobe for NYC was under $25.
    I love the exchange party…will investigate for Denver!
    And you know Jane Fonda in “Stanley and Iris” (1990) only had 2 sweaters–grey and pink…when she was sad she wore grey, when she was happy she wore pink.

  3. Charles, stay in the jungle, and avoid the shopping pressure! Thanks for dropping by from the tropics.

    Mindy – how is it possible to get a New York wardrobe for $25 (I saw your pictures and you looked awesome!)?
    Let me know if you are throwing an exchange party in Denver. Seems like I’m on the track for a grey and pink sollution, but I’m sure my surroundings would get tired of my Jane Fonda outfits quickly. Well, time to go to the gym, in my pink shirt.

  4. I really should try this too. My wardrobe is ever expanding, but then on really cheap (but good) 2nd hand and edited stuff.

    H&M isn’t that hard to stay away from, is it? Just realize how the clothes are so not build to last and that everyone shops there. – Oops, I just realized that this might be quite a dangerous thing to say out loud among Scandinavians 😉

    I’m so looking forward to your party! 🙂 (and thanks for the linklove)

  5. Hahahaha well I am in a jungle mall and shopping alot here because the norske kroner is almost 8 times more when you use it here. And most of all it is absolutely cheap. For example, a real baby south sea pearl necklace only costs around 200 kroner or less.

    I think with a 500 kroner budget you can already buy a whole get-up from top to bottom and eat in a poshy resto here at the same time.

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