I have literally shopped until I have dropped. The phrase is not merely a cute exaggeration or charming rhyme — it is a call for those who know that shopping is not a hobby or pastime, but an art.
It has taken me years to master the art of a good deal, and I still know that I have a lot to learn. Luckily, Chicago is a great classroom. Unluckily, with malls and boutiques around every corner, my attempt to save money is almost always abandoned.
Sometimes, I like to take a “quick” trip to Anthropologie. While I am not unique in that I love to go smell the candles there just like the rest of the world, I do enjoy sitting on the couches and pretending that I live there. One day, mark my words, my home will look just like Anthropologie. My game of pretend is merely me preparing for the inevitable.
Beyond going to my home away from home, being a Maxxinista, and perusing the aisles of DSW, there is one unconventional shop were I always feel the need to open my wallet. There’s something about the gift shop at the Art Institute that convinces me to buy things like greeting cards with famous impressionist paintings on them, t-shirts with iconic lions, and art history coffee table books.
While I do get a 10% off discount for having a membership, the clearance section is reasonably priced and is usually where I do the bulk all of my shopping. I enjoy buying artsy gifts from the Art Institute for people, and by people, I mean mostly myself.
During my last trip to the gift shop, I bought four large holographic postcards that were 25 cents each. Talk about a deal! That’s a cheaper price than the actual stamps it take to mail them to their destinations.
Next time you’re taking a cultural trip to the Art Institute, make sure to stop by the gift shop for some art you can actually take home with you. But I won't lie ... I've been there many times just to visit the gift shop. Those steals and deals won't buy themselves!