Thursday, October 22, 2009

Shopping for Slips

Paul has a huge amount of reading and studying to do this week and we had eaten through just about all the food in the house, so my mom and I took Sadie and made the hour and a half winding drive into town to stock up on supplies. Our first stop was at CVS for diapers (the CVS close to our house never has size 5's). Then we went over to Target to pick up a few things.

I was headed towards baby food when I got side tracked and stopped off in underwear. More specifically I ended up in the slip section. I have noticed lately (since the Great Dress Experiment began) that I desperately need a new slip. While most designers these days seem to take into account the fact that most women and girls don't wear slips (unless they're "slip dresses") the built in slips in many of my dresses are quite annoying. The fabric is still clingy and seems to be particularly static prone. These dresses seem to need a separate slip even more than my dresses that don't have slips built in.

So I walked over, casually, with Sadie, telling myself I really shouldn't buy anything other than what I'd come for, and glanced at the slip section. The slips were pretty picked over. There were only full slips left. I decided to look at the tags just to see what size they were. They were both my size. That meant I had a decision to make.

I remember a time, in the not so distant past. when I was constantly shopping. I had two closets in my little apartment that still couldn't contain the avalanche of clothes that tumbled out when I opened the door. Then my priorities shifted. I met my husband and did a lot of growing up. We paid off our credit cards a few months after we got married and these days we rarely have an opportunity to shop for clothes. Shoes are worn out before new ones are bought (sometimes for quite a while) and small tears are mended. We even dyed Paul's work pants black again after bleach spilled on them at work.
After checking the size of the slip I checked the price. $16.99. I put it into the cart and worried. I worried as I picked out baby food for the rest of the month and I worried as my picked up a container of cat litter. I worried through the store and actually walked half way back to the slip section once, to return the slip to its rack. I laughed a little because my old self would never have imagined worrying about such a little purchase, but that didn't make the decision any easier.

I think a lot of times moms have a hard time spending money on themselves. I can justify buying a fluffy new dress for Sadie to wear at Thanksgiving dinner, but my work (around the house and yard) jeans were tattered and threadbare before I finally bought a new pair (with a gift certificate back in April). Paul constantly picks up little things that Sadie needs, but tried to super glue the soles of his sneakers back on for weeks before admitting that they were done for and springing for new shoes. Parents sometimes have a hard time justifying their own expenses, especially when the expenses aren't actual necessities.

I finally broke down and bought the slip. I reasoned that I need the slip to modestly wear half the dresses that I own and it's ridiculous to have these dresses and not be able to wear them, because I don't have a slip. I also made myself feel a little better by telling myself that Paul and I had agreed that I need a new belt (the two pairs of pants I own are not staying up very well with all this toddler chasing going on) and the cheapest belt in the store was $22. This will further discourage me from wearing pants. So really I saved five dollars (or so I tell myself).

This post is on the long side so I'll save my thoughts on the importance of undergarments for another day (or maybe just tomorrow is Sadie doesn't fight me on the idea of "nap time").


  1. I hope you don't think this is gross, but the last three or four slips I bought came from Salvation Army, or some other goodwill shop. They've all been very nice, and I don't think I paid more than $2 or $3. I've always worn slips, yet as a mother on a very tight budget, I did what I could to stretch that dollar. No regrets!

    I'm loving this blog, sister! Keep it up!


  2. Hi Maria-
    I don't think it's gross at all! Most of my clothes these days have been coming from garage sales. I wish we had more thrift shops where we are and my husband actually suggested we go to one next time we go into the nearest large town, but it's a three hour round trip, so we don't go too often, and we're usually rushed when we do! But now that garage sale season is over, I'm definitely going to look into it!


I love comments and I read every single comment that comes in (and I try to respond when the little ones aren't distracting me to the point that it's impossible!). Please show kindness to each other and our family in the comment box. After all, we're all real people on the other side of the screen!