Thursday, September 1, 2011

Vanity and Designer Brands

I know how we all love to go for a shopping spree. Especially when there are great sales, huge discounts and unbelievable markdowns everywhere! Uh wait... that's right, I don't like to shop. I know that I'm absolutely crazy and this is totally unheard of. But the truth is I only hunt for necessities, I don't shop. Whenever I go to the mall (which is very rare) I gravitate mostly towards the food shops and restaurants, bookstores, personal services (spa, hair and nail salons), and the movies. The departments stores, clothing and shoe stores, women accessories, jewelry and perfumery stores? They don't get my attention so much. I know that women are supposed to love shopping but I guess I'm wired differently. Now my husband is the shopper in the family. Just tell him where the discounts and the clearance sales are, then you gotta move out of the way, or else.....

When he comes home from work, I'd find him toting some shopping bags. He would even call for his son to meet him out in the car because he needs help with the bags. Uh-oh, what does that mean? He needs help with the bags? How many are there? And when I ask him why he had to buy what he just brought home, especially since we really don't need them at the present, he says it's because "they're on clearance!" And he says it like it should explain everything and I'm the one who don't get it at all. For him, when something is on clearance or on sale, better grab it so we can save some money. For me, saving money means not spending it at all, on any clearance or not! (Sigh.) I guess he's right, I simply don't get it.

Yet I have to be thankful that my husband is not an extreme shopper. When I say extreme I mean when people only buy the top designer brands. At least my husband goes for anything that's on clearance. And when I say anything, it means anything, as long as it's on sale or it's coming out from the clearance rack. He's a "cheap" shopper. And I don't say this as an insult, I'm actually thankful that he is one. But please don't tell him I said that, he might change his shopping ways!

Don't get me wrong, I am all for great quality and on saving money in the long run. I also like to splurge on nice things sometimes as long as we don't have to give an arm and a leg just to get them. And I do like some top brand names and labels as well. They make it easier to remember the best products from the bad ones. Buy (or ogle) the top brands and stay away from the questionable ones --that's my motto as a buyer. I'm glad that I'm not particularly "brand name or label-conscious" so this way I don't feel restricted on my occasional shopping sprees. What's important is that I know what I like and I buy what I like (or need).

When I was younger I used to design women's clothes and apparel. I had a journal of my designs and drawings. It was more of a hobby than a career path. I know I can't draw very well but I have great ideas in my head. I used to design my own clothes and have a seamstress create them for me. I remember I had to explain myself very clearly so she would understand what the final product should look like. It was difficult at times since I was "sewing illiterate" and as I've said I can't draw well. But with much patience and intent communication, most of my designs came to life with the help of a very skillful lady. Without her, my designs would remain as it was, just a concept or an idea in my mind barely making it onto paper. Although fashion designing was only a hobby, my husband and I later decided to make it as a home-based business. We tried, but because of my shortcomings as a designer, in sewing, and as an entrepreneur, the business didn't prosper. Yet it was still a good try and it was worth the time and the effort. It was a brief yet exciting and a little stressful time in my life.

Having that experience in (amateur) designing, creating (more like scrambling really), and producing a product from scratch, I now have an enormous respect for all the entrepreneurs out there. I'm telling you it's not easy. So when I say that I'm not brand name or label-conscious, it's more of a confession of insufficiency on my part. It's not the products' fault. Some of the owners has given their sweat, tears and blood in order to get to where they are now. So I don't belittle top brand names or designer labels. If I can afford it, I'll buy more of these great products. Brand names are also important because from it we can do research about their creation, inception, the history, and the true "value" of the company.

When I read the Bible, I'm glad to learn that God is not as "brand name or label-conscious" as the rest of us. For Him, no matter who you are, what's your family name, where you've come from or what you've done, He is still your biggest fan (literally) in spite of yourself. He doesn't care if you are the President of the United States or the worst sinner of all-time and a nobody, He is rooting for you and for your success. Yes, He does know your name and your past but it's not to find faults or to list down your inadequacies. It's because He is the one who knew you even before you were born. The Bible says God is not a "respecter" of persons. He doesn't take into account our individual accomplishments so we can brag about it back at Him. He is only interested in our success if His will is in it and when His Name is glorified through us. When we are "earmarked" as God's own, that's the "brand name or label" that will last forever and ever. "...Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons: But in every nation he that feareth him, and worketh righteousness, is accepted with him." -Acts 10:34(b)-35 

"But glory, honour, and peace, to every man that worketh good, to the Jew first, and also to the Gentile: For there is no respect of persons with God." -Romans 2:10-11

I can surely boast of my many accomplishments no matter how small they are in other people's eyes. Or, I can brag about my life's experiences and my family's ventures, but what will it do for me? Maybe I'll feel happy and proud for a moment and people will applaud those feats and success but when the moment passes, what now? I'd rather boast in the name of Jesus and strive for success for His glory because that's what's eternal and that's what gives profound joy in my heart. Everything He allows us to do in life all comes from His grace and mercy and all must end for His glory. All else is just vanity. "For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's." -1 Corinthians 6:20


  1. I also rader go to the food department when shopping hahah

  2. Coneforce, thanks for your comment. And thanks for visiting my blog site. I hope you were blessed! =)

  3. Are you kidding me? You were a designer too? You have done a LOT of things in your life. We must be wired the same though, because I am not a shopper either. I do like to find good deals though. What a great application of God's love, designer brand or not.

  4. Ha-ha! I guess I am what you call "jack-of-all-trades, master-of-none!"
    'Been there, done that' is one of my life's motto. But I don't regret anything I've tried. All of those have contributed to who I am now.


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