I think I’ve mentioned it in passing here before, but I collect vintage handbags.
Last Sunday, I popped into a great vintage/antique shop in Baltimore after a delicious brunch at the Golden West and found another beautiful bag to add to my collection (I’ll be posting a picture in my Thursday: Most and Least post). It was $18 and I didn’t even think twice about purchasing it; it never crossed my mind that I’m trying to build up my Freedom Fund or that I’d just bought a purse the weekend before. This item was for my collection, which made it special. In other words, it was exempt from the usual “do I really need this?” mental rigamarole that I usually put myself through when considering a purchase.
I’ve been thinking about collections a lot since I started mine a little over a year ago. On the one hand, collecting something is usually based on spending money. Most items that people collect have to be bought. This makes collections an inherent money-suck. And if I’m an even remotely accurate representation of a collector, collectors are willing to spend generously and without much guilt on the items they’re after.
On the other hand, collecting something is fun! I love going into a vintage shop and wading through all the bags, opening up each one, examining them, thinking about the outfits I’d wear them with, thinking about all the other outfits they’ve been worn with over the years, haggling over the price. And in the end, I come away with a really cool, functional accessory that I’m sure no one else will be carrying. Also, I’ve never spend more than $50 on one of my bags. I’m not saying I’d never spend more than $50, but up to this point, I haven’t.
So I’m not sure where I come down on collecting. I suppose like any hobby you just sort of have to watch your spending and not let it get out of control. Still, I can’t help feeling like I’m just making an excuse to spend money when I buy a new bag.
Do you collect anything? Do you think collections are fun or just frivolous?