Everything I Should Have Bought, But Didn't

BY Anum Bashir

At times, working in the fashion industry can be likened to a double-edged sword in that it affords people like myself the fortuitous opportunity to borrow so many marvelous designers' creations to wear to events, shoots, and casual weekend getaways, etc. The downside is that you repeatedly end up foregoing the purchase of several of these aforementioned pieces, which could have undoubtedly enjoyed your company for years to come. At least in my case, having become a more methodical and conservative consumer in my 30s, I typically have opted not to spend thousands of dollars on pieces I could otherwise loan at my leisure. See the dilemma? Maybe it's summer, or maybe it's the regret, or maybe it's because I'm itching to splurge a little, but this blog post is here to advise you to say, "Fuck you" to savings, and encourage the type of spending that could do both you and your wardrobe good. As I sit here to write/ compile this, I'm admittedly filled with anguish and annoyance, beckoning the what-ifs, and serving myself a somewhat valuable lesson that some key pieces deserve the occasional indulgence. It might be reckless, short-sighted, or the deep desire to wear these pieces that have passed me by, but it's just the way I'm feeling this week. Here we have a photo journal of all the things I've worn over the years that never made it home with me, and now I can't stop wondering why. They range from the perfect white poplin slip dress from The Row, emerald green relaxed velvet lounge pants from Celine, an extremely affordable hat from Mango, to an oversized multi-colored cropped wool jacket from Marc Jacobs runway. The list truly goes on. What do you think - did I make several mistakes by not purchasing some of these pieces? Or is money in the bank a wiser avenue to venture down?

Pictured above is the aforementioned white cotton slip dress from The Row. Having celebrated my 10 year anniversary with Waqas a few weeks ago in Spain, all I could think of was how perfect this dress would have been to ring in that special moment.

Behold the perfect emerald green velvet pants from Celine circa Phoebe Philo. I was shooting with Dover Street Market in London a few years back and these beauties had instantly caught my eye whilst perusing around store. I had put them on, and felt my eyes roll in the back of my head with comfort. They might have been the best things I had tried on all season. Obviously, it was the price tag that prevented me from transacting, but I'm so sad I didnt take the plunge. They could have been with me forever.

Left: We have a fun and festive pair of Rosie Assoulin pants I had pulled from The Outnet for my first ever Man Repeller shoot. While packing my suitcase last month for my summer travels, I was reminded of how much these babies would have enjoyed the London streets, and Spanish coasts with me. They were on sale, at 60% off for something like $500. Still not a steal, but it's Rosie!!!

Right: This missed opportunity still baffles me to this day. How was I not willing to spend $50 on this incredible hat that others bought as a result of this shoot?!?! It was a piece I had pulled for another Man Repeller shoot - a story on being a newly minted hat person. Can't believe it never stuck. 

While traveling to Lagos Fashion Week last year, I had the opportunity to partner with Matchesfashion on some really fun looks. I had paired/ styled designers like Bottega Veneta and Chloe with the incredible talent that I was coming across in Nigeria. 

Part of my matches pull was this extremely coveted Lauren clutch from Bottega Veneta which I styled with this Merlette dress, and Kenneth Ize blazer for yet another Man Repeller shoot.

The blazer luckily did makes it way home with me to Dubai because I simply couldn't not purchase this token piece from my time here Lagos. The clutch however, sadly made its way back to London, and to this day I can't understand why. 

Having already bought one Kenneth Ize blazer, I quickly realized I couldn't afford another (with these blazers costing a cool $1000 if not more). I guess I have a good excuse for not having opted for the red polka dot when I had purchased the striped one in the previous picture. But still, a great piece!

This Marc Jacobs beauty if purchased would have been a totally emotional one, having witnessed the show the night before. I ran to the Soho store the very next day to try on this completely over the top statement piece which Waqas deemed was fit for a circus freak. LOL.

I tried it on and established that while I did look cool, the price tag was far too steep for such an impulse purchase. Come to think of it, I can't even remember how much it costed. My mind must have blocked it out because of how much I loved wearing a jacket that felt like a time machine to me.


Left: This Prada skirt (loaned to me for a shoot) looked so cute and fun on. I remember wearing it several times that way in a variety of different ways. It dawned on me that I could indeed bring down the cost per wear should I decide to own it. Having recently committed to the idea of spending less I guess I understood why I had to send it back. Sitting on my couch today, I deem that decision foolish. What do you think?

Right: Shot on the streets of Paris, I decided to once again request another color way of that same Lauren clutch by Bottega Veneta. It arrived, this time in an orange-camel color and I was completely smitten. I paired it with this Ganni quilted olive colored jacket, and a printed Prada turtleneck (all on loan). The outfit came together perfectly and was totally me. The temptation was to buy each and every piece, but secretly was only going to allow myself one, if that. With the inability to make a choice breathing down my neck, I snapped, packed it all away in the crisp white wrapping tissue it came in, and sent it back before I could change my mind.

In hindsight, wish I hadn't.

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