Belt tightening: It's all relative

You're probably aware of the economic gloom gripping the world - unless, of course, you're not. It seems that no one is immune, not even Vogue, my beloved purveyor of guilt-free frivolity. Whenever I feel guilty for buying something for myself, all I have to do is pick up the latest issue and tell myself, "At least I didn't spend $900 on flip-flops," and go on with my life.

This month's issue has a helpful piece called "The Economists" where their editors show us that "being chic without breaking the bank is, indeed, possible." I was intrigued (how could I not be?) so I took a look at it. DUDE. Do you know what they call "budget" shopping? A $500 per item limit. That means that you could spend $495 on sunglasses and $350 on flowers and $310 on a cuff bracelet and $475 on (gorgeous) green flats and they'd still consider it "budget shopping."

I love you Vogue, I really do. But don't jump on the frugal bandwagon when you don't have a clue. I'll stick to looking at your pretty pictures for inspiration and go elsewhere for budgeting advice, thankyouverymuch.

The video below gives you a taste of what they're talking about. It's unintentionally hilarious.

At the other end of the spectrum is Target. I'll confess, I'm not a big fan of Target (too much stuff and way too many people in one place.) But it was hard to miss the 5-piece luggage set on sale for $49 on the cover of their Sunday circular:


$49! What a deal! Too bad you'd have to be an idiot to travel with so much luggage these days. Don't you have to pay a check-in fee of $15 per bag - each way? Better spend your $49 towards one decent carry-on. Because - surprise! This set is nothing but junk.