Monday, 10 October 2011

Add To Cart–The Online Gamble

I have a bit of a reputation with my friends for having a serious online shopping habit. It started off fairly innocently buying beauty products off – which I have since managed to earn the maximum loyalty discount on, and the odd piece of clothing etc off eBay. It swiftly progressed to the buying of new items of clothing, shoes and accessories, stationery, bed linen, floor rugs, vacuume cleaners, makeup, Skye’s bedroom furniture. In fact you name it, I have probably bought it online. It’s not just me though, Luke has a weakness for eBay that saw the first couple of weeks infatuation resulting in the phrase ‘I think I just bought something’ being said over and over again. I quickly taught him how to add things to his watch list to try and overcome this problem. The biggest purchase he has made is a trencher, but mostly he sticks to bike and fishing paraphernalia. Needless to say we are fans of “Add to Cart”.

Of course buying anything online is a bit of a gamble. I have made my fair share of disappointing purchases, but in most cases I have been able to either pass these items onto someone who can use them, or return the product for refund or exchange. On the upside I have had some real wins with things I have found online, like this beauty that arrived today. Isn’t she pretty, and she was a lot cheaper than she looks ;)


Buying a handbag online is possibly one of the most risky online purchases I have made because you really have to try a handbag on before you can be sure it suits you. I couldn’t even see what the inside of this bag was like from the photos but because of their returns policy I was only going to be out of pocket for shipping charges if it didn’t suit, which would be about the same as the cost of the fuel I would have used driving to the store. Thankfully we are a perfect match and now I just have to wait patiently until Christmas time when I can actually use her. The other thing I like about online shopping is that I seem to have more variety. These thongs were available at several of my local stores but none of them had them in the green. With the simple click of a button I had made my purchase last Friday and they arrived at lunchtime today!


As much as I use to enjoy spending the day wandering around a Shopping Centre and trying things on, it is just not practical for me right now. Skye will only tolerate sitting in a stroller for so long and has generally inhaled the contents of her packed lunch within the first hour of our trip. The number of pathetic customer service experiences I have encountered make me less than sympathetic towards the retailers that complain about their lack of sales. My laptop does not care that I haven’t brushed my hair, or I have a little dried Weetbix on my pants, my credit card is always welcome. Location is also an issue for me. Even going to my closest Shopping Centre takes about half an hour which is more than I can cope with after I have spent 45 minutes wrestling with Skye to put some pants on.

My all time favourite online score would have to be this silk dress by Saba. I purchased it on eBay for the princely sum of $22 and wore it to a friends wedding. I don’t know if I will ever have a reason to wear it again, but for the price, I am not worried.


One of my biggest regrets (that I still have in my possession) is this little number also bought on eBay. I couldn’t tell you how much I paid for it, but I still don’t know what possessed me, its all kinds of shapeless, poorly fitting wrong and you can imagine how smashing it looks with my fair skin…


Since I now consider myself a bit of an expert when it comes to online bargain hunting, I wanted to share some of my favourite sites. Please feel free to add your own favourites to the list as I would love to check them out!

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