Splurge or Steal // Glittery Kicks

November 4, 2011
my dear christine tweeted about these shoe twins the other day
and i thought they made the perfect illustration.
find them here: miu miu + charlotte russe
hey, i have a fun question for you today…
if you follow along on twitter or facebook (please, do! it’s a lot of fun!)
you may have seen the convo we had about “quality over quantity”
and i received so many great responses (supporting both sides),
that i thought it might be interesting to open up the conversation here, as well.
so here it is:
if you had a chunk of change to spend, and you KNEW it was going to go towards shoes,
would you rather buy one fabulous, pricier pair 
OR a few less expensive, pretty-cool pairs.
i was doing a little birthday-shopping online (i turned 27 yesterday… eek!)
and as we’re in the process of downsizing,
perhaps also the fact that i’m another year older,
i’m really starting to evaluate my purchases more carefully than i ever did before.
i’ve ALWAYS been a bargain-hunter, and LOVE finding great deals
(“hello, my name is jessie, and i’m a serial-thrifter”)
but lately, i’m more on the fence when it comes to designer vs. fast fashion.
because shoes are my all-time favorite fashion purchase,
and since i happened to snatch up a few goodies for myself yesterday,
i was very curious to know what my fellow shoppers and stylistas thought about the topic.
from what i saw yesterday, the opinions were overwhelmingly for the pricier piece!
i’d love to hear what you think in the comments,
and i’ll be sure to share my birthday goodies with you soon!
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19 Comments

  • Reply Anonymous November 4, 2011 at 1:20 pm

    Definitely go with the quality piece if the item is one that will be used for a long time and has a more timeless style. Opt for cheaper versions when going with a trendier style that won’t last – like the pair you pictured for your post. Regardless of what people say (“if you can’t tell the difference, why pay the difference?), you can almost always tell the difference.

  • Reply Supal November 4, 2011 at 1:56 pm

    Quality for sure! In Gujarati (my native language from India) we have a saying that translates into “Purchase for the next generation”. This means, you should purchase something of quality that will uphold its beauty, so you are able to pass it down to you children/grandchildren etc. My mom has these beautiful (designer) Indian sarees that her mother gave her, that she recently gifted me on my birthday. I’m a firm believer in tradition.

    Another reason is that I rather have something of quality because it will hold well. I hate purchasing something because it’s cheaper and then it falls apart if I’m out or after a few wears. You never end up getting your money’s worth.

    xo. http://www.chevronsandeclairs.com

  • Reply Erin B. November 4, 2011 at 2:25 pm

    Happy Birthday yesterday! I hope it was a great day!

    When it comes to shoes – quality almost always wins out. Unless it’s a very trendy shoe that I will only wear for one season – I hate to spend nearly $900 on a shoe I probably won’t wear next year as well.

    Of course, my favorite is finding a really great designer shoe on sale. Quality + Quantity? Yes, please.

  • Reply Sarah Frills4Thrills November 4, 2011 at 2:35 pm

    I’ve been feeling the same way as far as being a thrifter but more recently shopping and higher end stores… I think that it’s ok to splurge on classic/timeless pieces. But you should always buy trendy items cheap because they’re ususally not a good investment since they’re out in a season. Also, I would never spend $890 on those shoes, they’re adorable, but I wouldn’t get to wear them that often, and when I would, EVERYONE would notice so it’s not like I’d want to wear them that frequently. I think it’s just important to calculate your cost per wear before you spend a lot on one item (whatever “a lot” means for you and your budget).

  • Reply Bev Weidner (Bev Cooks) November 4, 2011 at 2:46 pm

    Steal! Thrift that motha!

    xo.

  • Reply rachael adele // for the love of design November 4, 2011 at 3:04 pm

    happy belated birthday, jessie!

    as i’m getting older, i really have been trying to be more reasonable about my budget and the quality of my purchases. but every now and then i find myself going a little crazy and buying things because they are a good deal. and i get really excited, and then 10 minutes later i have buyers remorse, and then i wear it once and never again. so we will see if someday i can break this habit, but in my mind i generally believe quality over quantity is the way to go!

  • Reply Angel Court Jewels November 4, 2011 at 3:10 pm

    I go both ways on this topic, but lately I’ve gone gaga over designer shoes. It’s a good thing I know a great little consignment store, where the ladies dump off designer shoes that they’ve only worn once, for a few hours to a party.

    xoxo,
    Courtney

  • Reply Tina November 4, 2011 at 3:24 pm

    Wow! i can not believe charlotte russe put out a shoe so similiar to miu mius! i would totally buy the charlotte russe ones cos they are cute lol but i think a part of me would feel like a fraud lmao i would definitely buy a few less expensive pairs then splurge on an expensive one. unless they were loubitons. then i’ll sway!

  • Reply Wendy November 4, 2011 at 3:26 pm

    I go for quality over quantity. However, it can depend on the price for me. I’d much rather buy a $100 pair of shoes than a similar $40 pair…that way I get nicer materials and craftsmanship. However, I don’t like to pay much more than $100 for a pair of shoes because then I am almost too scared to actually wear them!! I bought a pair of Frye boots ($$$) that I absolutely love, but I am so careful when I wear them. I think before, “Will there be children where I’m going?” b/c they might step on my feet…I can’t wear my boots… LOL

  • Reply Sara B November 4, 2011 at 6:33 pm

    This is fun! I was surprised to see so many people choose the one expensive pair as well, but after reading people’s reasons it makes sense. Since I am once of the cheapest shoppers ever, my vote would initially lean towards getting more pairs (considering $100 is still a lot for me to spend on shoes). But if there was a pair I had been dying for and knew I would wear and treasure forever, then I believe it would be worth the higher price tag. I love the thought of passing things down to other generations too :) Though that seems to work better with purses than shoes maybe. Makes me think of my Grammy :) xoxo

  • Reply Lia November 4, 2011 at 7:43 pm

    I think it depends. For these Miu Mius above, which clearly are a fad, I’m not going to drop nearly $1K for something I’m only going to wear for a year. Now a pair of classic pumps, boots, etc I’ll splurge on, knowing that I’ll wear them for years. All that said, I don’t do knock offs :) So I would DIY my own creation, inspired by the original. Happy belated birthday!!
    xx
    Lia

  • Reply Elissa November 4, 2011 at 9:55 pm

    if we are talking specifically about shoes, I personally go for somewhere above cheap quality but not high end either because I ruin shoes so fast (rain, snow, mud, dirt…you get the picture, leather doesn’t last long around me).

    if we are talking specifically about the shoes above, I’d say definitely go for the cheap pair because they are super trendy and not classic enough to spend $1000 with tax on.

    for me clothes are another story. I find that i take much better care of my clothes than my shoes, and i still have clothes in perfect condition from many years ago. I’d sooner spend the money for designer clothes than shoes.

    -elissa

  • Reply Anastasia from Natbeesfashion November 4, 2011 at 10:25 pm

    oh man! That is such a difficult question…
    It depends if there is a nice-good quality piece that will last at least up to 3 years then i will buy it even if it is expensive. I think its better have less in better quality pieces, rather than have many cheap low quality..
    Have a great weekend love!
    xxx

  • Reply Anonymous November 5, 2011 at 1:38 am

    I have found over the years that I get tired of clothes after a season, I really like the trends, whether it’s new colors, styles, etc. I have bought quality pieces, but still don’t wear them after a season, especially 2 seasons, so I go for quantity over quality every time.

    I thinks it’s a personal preference for sure.

  • Reply Megan, The Frugalista Diaries November 5, 2011 at 2:34 am

    As much as I’d like to say quality, I’m going to say the less expensive because some things just aren’t made the same anymore and the quality is lax and less reliable….

  • Reply Caro November 5, 2011 at 4:08 am

    I have to say, I’m much more inclined to think of a purchase as an investment now. I’m 27 as well, and I feel like at some point in my mid-20s, I quit buying things just because they were inexpensive and really thought about whether it was an item that would last and was something I needed/would add to my personal style. For example, I’ve bought a few nice pairs of boots, even though Target made the knockoffs, just because I know that the style will last and I want to be able to care for the leather. Interesting discussion!

  • Reply JustJen November 5, 2011 at 7:15 am

    Wow….I would have NEVER thought that anyone would consider a $900 pair of shoes! I’m amazed… I think it’s the economy that’s changed my mind about this topic. That and the beautiful red Perlina bag that’s in my closet.

    I have several friends who had good jobs, in good industries that just collapsed when the economy did. One couple lost their house and another guy is still pretty much paycheck to paycheck and teeters on the edge of making his bills each month. This SCARES me like you wouldn’t believe. You just never know…. So, yeah, I can’t spend $900 on a pair of shoes, no matter how beautiful, knowing that I won’t wear them but a few times. It’s not just because I’m afraid I’ll lose my job, but I think of my friends, who can’t afford the basics. In my mind (I’m not judging anyone else), it’s not right. I’m not special. I shouldn’t walk around in $900 shoes or with a $400 purse because I can. Not when others….decent, hardworking people….can’t.

    That said, I have a beautiful $200 Perlina handbag in my closet. I loved it when I first got it. The leather was so soft, the color so beautiful. It is, by far, the most expensive handbag I’ve ever owned. You know which handbags I switch out between? A black fringed bag from Macy’s; a silvery tote from Express and a brown satchel from Nordstrom. Total cost for ALL 3? Less than $100. I love having 3 totally on trend handbags to choose from. I love that when I get tired of them in the spring, I can just set them aside. But most of all, I feel pretty good about taking them out with my less fortunate friends.

    Like I said, I’m not judging anyone else, it’s just what’s been swirling around in my head for a couple of months.

  • Reply Sarah November 5, 2011 at 6:28 pm

    I’d go middle of the road, that way you get several good pairs. Them there are some hooker shoes you are showing!!

  • Reply emmy-ray November 6, 2011 at 6:28 pm

    What a great discussion! I have been really considering this argument when shopping as well. I have in the past not been able to afford anything but inexpensive pieces, but have quickly discovered that even when washing them according to instructions they shrink 3 sizes, making them a truly disposable piece of clothing, which seems like a total waste.

    The one thing I will splurge on is purses. I’m a “staple purse” kind of gal. I find one that I like and that goes with everything, and I’ll carry it every day for years to come. There is definitely a difference between a real leather beautifully lined piece, and a faux one that falls apart after a month.

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