This is Why We Can’t Have Nice Things (‘Cause We Can’t Afford Them)
Published: Friday, February 15, 2013
Updated: Friday, February 15, 2013 02:02
A good friend of mine just got approximately $4,000 back in student loan money. I asked him, “Clyde, after you take me out to dinner and buy me some drinks, what will you be spending your money on?” To this he explained that, after spending the necessary money on rent, groceries and school supplies, he would be purchasing a round-trip plane ticket to Los Angeles. “Then,” he said, “I am buying some True Religion jeans.”
To those who are not well versed in designer denim brands, True Religion is a clothing line that was founded on expensive jeans, ranging from $150 to $450. Other people may see this as a waste of money; “Why buy $300 jeans when I can get a $15 pair at Target?” And while I fiscally completely understand this feeling (honey, I am trying to pay my bills every damn month), if someone has the cash flow to invest in a pair of high-quality duds, I salute them.
But what pieces are smart to invest in? Mesh, neon yellow four-inch pumps that you saw Tila Tequila wearing on E! News? NO. These are not a pair of shoes that you can wear to both your first interview out of college and your older sister’s wedding—they are not versatile. So, here we find ourselves at the list of things that, if you are in the lucky financial position to spend some serious dough, you should consider investing in.
As previously stated, a solid pair of shoes is important. And in New England, the most important pair of shoes is boots. While the most practical would be Gortex snowboarding boots, I am not trying to push the “yeti footwear” agenda on anyone. Instead, women should opt for tall leather boots that are roomy enough to fit a pair of thick wool socks into. And while I do not own a pair, if you are like me and sometimes prefer to dress in a way that says: I am NOT IN THE MOOD FOR YOUR TOMFOOLERY TODAY, I recommend Doc Martens for both sexes. They allow you to slosh in the snow but also look like Courtney Love is your not-so-distant cousin (I wish).
A durable leather purse/murse multi-purpose bag is also an item where quality is paramount. I understand that in these tough academic times, for some of you a JanSport backpack is an essential in order to tote around your seven textbooks and one pound of pens. However, if you walk into an interview at Liberty Mutual with a knapsack strapped to your back you may be mistaken for a kindergartener and asked where your mommy is. Instead, shop around for a simple black, brown, any neutral or deeply-colored large tote. My favorite places to shop for simple leather goods when I am in the position to get a more expensive item (strictly holidays or a huge tax refund) are Madewell.com and Us.Asos.com.
The practicality of having a timepiece that is only a wrist away is preferable to constantly pulling out your iPhone to be reminded of your consistent tardiness (I may be projecting). While sometimes it seems like the only watch options out there are a bright pink sparkly Baby-G watch that you got from JC Penney when you were twelve or a $300 Michael Kors oversized gold-plated, Kim Kardashian-inspired timepiece (I don’t hate), there are many that aren’t ridiculously priced but still hold true to a promise of high quality. Although oversized gold watches are trendiest right now, I will wear my rectangular silver Citizens watch that I scored on Amazon.com until I lose a wrist to wear it on. Furthermore, I scored it for only $180! Other retailers that promise high-quality timepieces at discounted prices are Overstock.com and Ebay.com (although you MUST find credible and highly-rated sellers!).
As college students, we are all on strict monetary budgets. Most of the time, my “budget” means leaving my debit card at home so that I don’t buy a two dollar coffee that I can’t afford. However, sometimes we luck out and somehow find ourselves in the market to spend a little more lavishly. When this time comes around, spend that hard-earned (or luckily-received) money wisely and invest in pieces that will serve you well as wardrobe staples.