My little red tether is my anchor in running with my friends. A beautiful guide dog has been my tether/anchor in mobility and independence for 17 years: 1. Pantera 2. Cricket, and now my beautiful 3. Georgina (Georgie). A life of family and friends is my joy and anchor in life.

The human spirit is stronger than anything that can happen to it. CC Scott

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Blind Fashion - Shopping

I love fashion - clothes - and shopping.  As I was losing my vision I didn't want this to be a loss.  That is the real message of this post ... whatever you love - blindness or anything else does not need to take away from that love ... you just might need to find some new creative ways to do it.  Many years later with adjustments along the way, I have found a few tips to share.  

 Great Resource: If you've always enjoyed shopping for clothing and keeping up-to-date with fashion trends, shopping for clothing can continue to be an enjoyable experience.    Blindness does not need to stop this experience!     

  • Discuss the latest trends and seasonal colors with family members and friends who have similar tastes and interests and try to have some ideas about your preferred colors and styles before you go on a shopping trip.
Steve and Natalie are fabulous in assisting me in shopping.  I am so grateful to them! I have found it is helpful that I know what I am looking for prior to going shopping -- a nice pair of black pants, a fun new sweater, etc.  There is space for some impulse - something fun found, but I want to have items that I will wear.  I also have some good friends that are super in helping me shop and watching out for something they know I will like.  I trust their understanding my style and what I like.  I may get an email -- Toms boots on sale - you'd love the grey ones and they would look great with your cranberry pants :).  Indeed, I do!

There are also those times when I might want or need to shop alone.  This is where I have found it very helpful to utilize the help of a 'personal shopper'.  Important first, get to know them and develop a trust so that you know they understand your style and what you like and don't like.  

  • Many large department stores now provide "Personal Shopper" services for their customers. A personal shopper can help you locate merchandise, read labels, and determine prices, in addition to adding a personal touch to the purchasing process. There is usually no charge for this service, although you should confirm this prior to making an appointment with a personal shopper.
This cranberry skirt is an example of an experience with Stephanie - personal shopper at Nordstrom.  She is amazing!!  The first time I walked through the store with her I felt like I was back visually browsing through the racks pulling out what I love!  It was an awesome experience!  She has an amazing gift to find clothes that are just what I would pick out!  She spent some time learning my style likes and also using her professional background to help me.  She also has a gift for describing the clothes.  She is super great to tell me honestly if the look is good for me.  At our first shopping experience she told me what type of clothing would be good for my body type and which may not be as flattering.  I recognized that the clothes that were hanging in my closet not my favorites fit in the latter category! There is not a charge for this amazing service and many stores offer this professional help.
The outfit below: I walked in alone to J Crew Outlet with Cricket and told the sales associate about an upcoming event that I needed an outfit.  I find the more I share with them on the 'event' and my tastes, the more helpful they can be.  In the meantime, she also shared other ideas that I said no that doesn't quite sound  like something I would wear.   Once I find something that feels comfortable to me, I ask for feedback ... even texting a picture to someone that I know will give me helpful feedback.    
Ask questions.   I like to ask .. what is the fun new color?  what is the latest trend?  does this color look good on me?  is this a good fit?  I gain a lot of information and further options and choices as I ask questions.
Favorite Shopping Buddy.
Will you be up bright and early with me and Cricket and (not sure who is in yet for bright and early shopping in my family :) this Friday morning?


GOOSE said...

Hahhaha. I had to explain all this to my MOM. She does not like shopping, and forget about latest trends. Glad you have such supportive people in your life who lend you a hand.
OH and NO, MOM will not be shopping on Friday, she never has. But she will be cooking lunch and dinner for the folks at the homeless shelter. I get to stay at my buddy Bert's place.

Becky Andrews said...

Goose. I am glad you will get to spend some time with Bert! What your mom is doing is so lovely! Would you ask her how best we could help this holiday? Xx

Alanna said...

Love this post!! I am totally going shopping and requesting a personal shopper now. Heaven knows I could use some help in the fashion department. :)
I just want to say that whenever I look at your blog, I find hope in whatever lies ahead for me. I have learned so much from you Becky. Thanks for sharing your love and gratitude.

Becky Andrews said...

Alanna ... love you!! You are so sweet.

Grandma & Grandpa said...

And you always look terrific! How fun that you can still enjoy shopping and putting together great outfits!