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blackfridayDue to the recent economic climate, there’s plenty of talk about Black Friday from the retailers and some are even breaking with tradition– Black Fridays happening a week before, a week after, or not at all (gasp!).  But every good consumer loves a sale! Buy that TV you wanted so badly for your room, a new pair of jeans to replace the one with the hole in the crotch, or a new pair of boots to wear when you return to New England this winter.

Before attacking the racks and shelves, here are some things I learned from my years of Black Friday shopping:

  1. Don’t buy something just because it’s cheap. If not, you’d end up with things you’d never wear/use.  I’m talking about my grey wool suit vest  and 12 piece cutlery set– what was I thinking?
  2. Do bring a big bag(s). Go green by bringing your own bags. Besides, you want sturdy canvas bags for your precious purchases—you’re going to be fighting through crowds aggressive enough to tear paper bags.
  3. Do buy classic, investment pieces. This is the one time of year you can afford to buy the coat/television/leather office chair. Last year, I bought a cashmere coat from Theory and the cut is classic so I can wear it now or when I’m 35.
  4. Don’t be narrow-minded. Venture beyond the sale section and you might find non-sale items that are affordable or perfect. Snap those items up while people are still fixated on sale items.
  5. Do take an honest friend. Bargain shopping is the time when one is most likely to buy things that are actually not necessary. Bring a friend who will tell you that you don’t need another pair of black flats/coffee maker/laptop.
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Born in Johor Baru, Malaysia, and raised in Tokyo, Japan, Madison Shimoda is an award-winning writer, performer, and shopper. She now temporarily lives in the United States and working on a Bachelor's degree in Literature and Philosophy & Public Affairs at Claremont McKenna College. During her spare time, Madison likes reading poetry, shopping, and listening to jazz. She is currently working on the next great American novel.

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