everyone needs an outlet

Everyone in my house had plans. They were all going off somewhere, so I decided I'd take myself to the outlet center.
It's a little over an hour away and I only go if I know I need something there.

I made a little list:

Some of our Sausalito dishes from Pottery Barn are cracked. They always end up at my place at the table.

K has put his elbow through 4 shirts. I have repaired two of them and he has put his elbow through the repairs too.

The boys sheets are looking pretty awful. I think they must have talons for toenails and I only have one set for each bed. They've stopped sleeping with top sheets. Did you know it is nearly impossible to purchase (for a reasonable price) twin fitted sheets without the rest of the set?

I left after I drove boys to school and the train and I arrived just before the stores opened.
For you....

My first stop was Pottery Barn. For the dishes. Which there were none of. It's a good thing K didn't come with me - he would have been aggravated and this would have dampened my spirits for the hours of browsing I was then forced to do.
They did have some neat stuff at PB though -

apples falling

I love the IDEA of this long sheet music. I don't necessarily LOVE this particular music, but I do need something like this for over our fireplace.


There were sold in sets of two.
I don't really need two - and neither of them moved me.
Also, it was fake piano roll music and that pissed me off.
Good concept, poor execution.

shower curtains

The shower curtains were nice. Well made. But at $30 I thought they were a little too expensive. $24.95 would have made me think twice.
(All this stuff ends up on ebay you know. People can be seen with giant carts full of stuff they are going to sell on ebay from this place - and now you know why it isn't especially cheap there either.)

shadowbox frames

I need two of these shadowbox frames for antique prints I have. They were on sale for $20 each. I didn't buy them.


I didn't buy this either, but we need one desperately. $53.00.
There was lots of Christmas crappe at PB/Williams-Sonoma. I had the sudden inspiration that I might find some of that peppermint bark. But it wasn't to be.

sauce pan

I ruined one of our sauce pans. It was Revere Ware and not heavy enough for our stove.
Some day I will replace it with one of these.

I stared for a long time at the dishes. They had Sausalito dishes, but not white ones. They had white dishes, but not Sausalitos.
I bought some cocktail napkins. $2.99.

My next stop was a Wamsutta outlet store that was closing. For the sheets. For the boys. It took some scrounging around but I got three twin fitted sheets in Egyptian cotton, in ecru, for $4.99 each. Three hundred thread count. I was very proud.

My next stop was Saks Off Fifth. I wanted to look at shirts for K. I was hoping they would have some Faconable shirts. They didn't. And now that I am home I realize that it is NORDSTROM that carries Faconnable. Damn it.

I had a great time browsing at things I would have no occasion to wear.
I saw a wonderful Prada bag. Imagine if I had a Prada bag? It's funny really.
I saw lots of sweaters that looked boring on their hangers -


sweater 2

they were $40 - $60, which is good, but not great. I don't need knits.

Saks is a fun place to look at fantasy clothing -

vest thing

Each piece was $120. Marked down from three hundred. I didn't need any of them either.

I saw some nice Eileen Fisher things, but I was truly dismayed to see that they were poorly made. Now what am I going to wear when I am old?

short sleeves

I'm sort of stumped on the short sleeved wool jacket thing. I know if I was a tall thin twenty something with a cashmere tank top and skinny jeans tucked into boots that I wouldn't be stumped, but as a nearly 50, short, curvy mom who would go crazy if her pants were tucked into her boots, I DON'T GET IT.

cape thing

There were WALLS of cape-coat things. The cape-coat - a whim that never really caught on. I thought I wanted one last year and then I went and sat in my car and tried to figure out how I would drive with my arms through those slits and THAT WAS THE END OF IT. Judging from the number of them on sale ($100) I'm thinking I'm wasn't the only person who figured that out.

I looked at lots of lovely outerwear and then WHAT DID I SPY?

Mischa tag 2

A small, heavy, chunky Mischa Lampert scarf.

green scarf

It was not in good condition...

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but I was tempted nonetheless. You see, I know her whole story, Mischa Lampert. I know that her grandfather CARVED her knitting needles. Or something.
But the pilled scarf, an art form, really, was $40. Which is too much for such a silly thing. Besides, I like her hats better.

The J Crew outlet had nothing for me, though the corduroy pants held promise, I didn't feel like undressing. I scored a couple of shirts for K. Please remember, as you walk through Ralph Lauren and Brooks Brothers and J Crew that K NEEDS a pocket in his shirt. So. Don't bother with any that don't have one. Also? He doesn't like stripes or rugby shirts and has too many blue shirts. I know that limits us. DEAL WITH IT.

My last stop was the Barney's outlet. Barney's is very eclectic and I love it. There were wonderful handbags and blouses and shoes and coats there.

coat $100

I always fall in love with coats at Barney's and this time was no exception. But I don't really NEED a coat.

Don't worry - I bought something...

new hat

I bought a hat.
And I luff it.
And I drove home in the rain, singing out loud to the radio and had a very nice time.
I was just in time to pick up a cup of coffee and meet the train.

And which of the items not purchased will haunt me?
The picture frames, the saucepan, and the coat.

But not for long.


Birchsprite said…
I love browsing. It's even better when you do it as I never get to see these shps in England!
Badger said…
Okay well the Sex Bed? It's a divided king. So it requires two twin XL fitted sheets and a king flat sheet. And I require a high thread count. IMPOSSIBLE TO SHOP FOR SHEETS. THAT MATCH.

I love the outlet mall, though. We have a tiny one only 10 minutes away. I have spent thousands of virtual dollars in the Le Creuset outlet store alone.
Anonymous said…
Oh, yes, the PB outlet. We have one near us. Looks like our PB has the same exact stuff that your's does. I looked at that same basket. The last time I went there I looked at throw pillows, but they were $30.00 each. No way am I paying $30.00 each for throw pillow covers, especially not from an outlet.
Anonymous said…
BB - Does K ever buy the things you mention wanting on your blog?

That would be sweet.

(K - hint, hint!)
As a PB employee, with a PB employee discount, can you imagine how much fun I used to have at the outlet? Alas, there are no PB outlets in the Sunshine State. So I have to wait....wait....wait, to see if we have something I want in our regular store and pounce on the 50% off items and use my discount. I just got the $60"Reindeer" teapot for $10 and some cute snowflake paperclips to add to my craft box for $1.49.

Congrats on the sheets!
Anonymous said…
Yay! I love it when you take us shopping. :)

Amy A. said…
Can anyone please explain why 'children these days' won't use the top sheet? I'm sick to death of washing comforters.

Fun shopping trip, bb!
Anonymous said…
Thank you for taking me shopping;) It was fun! I also have 3 boys who do not use a top sheet. Weirdest thing, but we go with it. Great buy on the sheets. As with you, what I like, most places don't sell. Those of us with taste should start a catalogue or store with "Better Goods" like nice men's shirts with pockets and well-conceived clothes for those of us over 20.
RW said…
My youth do not use the top sheet either!

Anonymous said…
Ha! I luff it that you said "luff." My girlfriends and I started saying that back in high school after we saw "Manhattan!" You brought back fond memories for me with one little "luff."
Unknown said…
My son doesn't want to make his bed which is why he sleeps on top and uses a comforter. Its the same reason why he never puts his clothes away and never takes it from the laundry room after i've washed it. I wish I lived near outlets and nice stores (sigh) ..we have to drive 25 miles to go to a McDonalds. Not that i'd want to but sometimes i wish i lived close to civilization (heavy sigh).
Jennifer said…
We have a basket just like that.. only it's old and breaking and I have no idea where it even came from in the first place. But we use it for laundry.

I like your new hat :)
BabelBabe said…
We have a round basket like that in the bathroom for use as a hamper, and I wish I'd bought a rectangular/square one instead.

After the most recent round of disgustingness, I have insisted upon top sheets so I don't have to wash the comforters every couple days for the next few weeks. You'd think i was torturing my children.

The frames would haunt me, but you can get the same sort at Bed Bath & Beyond, or a Joann fabric type of place...possibly cheaper.

H is equally picky about his shirts, and I do all the buying. Very frustrating sometimes, but not nearly so frustrating as trying to buy him shoes.
alice c said…
The short jacket - yesterday I saw a student in an acid yellow boiled wool short jacket and only the prospect of being sacked for gross misconduct prevented me from ripping it off her shoulders.

I am liking that hat. Lots.
I love it when we all go shopping with you and I didn't spend a dime. Nor did I have to find places to store all those things I didn't buy.
KPB said…
Badger just made my brain bleed with the mere concept of a Le Creuset outlet store.

I too get purchasing paralysis in these settings, it is why I avoid them like. Well, that and the crowds. And a unsubstantiated belief that most of the clothes are not in fact remainders of the season but versions made in even worse sweat shops than usual to stock such places. That's just part of my upbringing surrounded by conspiracy theories that I'm yet to work through.

I want one of those cape jackets purely because of my obsesssion with Nanny and the Professor as a child. Oh how I wanted her cape and jaunty hat.
Wendy said…
It never occurred to me how hard it would be to drive in a cape/coat. Still damnn cute though.
robiewankenobie said…
I saw some nice Eileen Fisher things, but I was truly dismayed to see that they were poorly made. Now what am I going to wear when I am old?

made me laff until i was incontinent.