Julia, my Maid of Honor and Kindred Spirit, and me
Once upon a time there was a young woman, me, who fell in love with a couple of pink chairs from Mitchell Gold. While I was at the annual market sale deciding if they were too frivolous for reality, I met another young woman, Julia. She was working that day, only for the special market sale and she was helping me with my pink chair dilemma. I was with my aunt and as Julia walked away I said "That girl is me." She dresses likes me, thinks like me and I had this uncanny feeling that we must be kindred spirits. I got her email and even though we lived two hours apart we became friends. She came to visit me in Greenville, SC. I stayed with her in Hickory, NC. We talked of trips to Italy. She was the Maid of Honor in my wedding. She is a friend that I can be totally honest with no matter how awful it sounds coming out. I love those kind of friends because I always wanted a sister and this is the closest experience that I could have to that.
One weekend I was staying at her lovely, impeccably decorated and Mitchell Gold outfitted home and I noticed something in her bathroom. It was a basket. It had lotion, eye shadow, maybe a lipstick, and very few other things. Curious, I asked her about the basket full of very few potion bottles in her bathroom. She said those were all that she had. A bottle of lotion, one eyeshadow (not even a palette!), ONE LIPSTICK, and maybe a blush that she didn't really use. I shudder as I write this as I remember the truth dawning on me that my soul-friend could have so little in the way of makeup and potion bottles. Mine tends to be under the sink, on top of the sink, in storage bins, taking up drawer space, in my purse, and on top of the dresser. Julia seriously only buys one color lipstick and she keeps buying it over and over. Another shock to me because I have a hard time with repeat buying. There are so many others to try!
Having said all that, this little basket has been my inspiration ever since I laid eyes on it. Yes, I have bought baskets to emulate it only to have them overflowing in a short time. I do console myself and Gustavo when I point out to him how much LESS I have than I used to have. Remember that linen closet in my condo? It was full. Remember the apartment after that? It was only the full length under the double sink vanity. Now, only under my sink and a small drawer in the closet, er and a small storage container and ok on top of the sink. Oh, I forgot about the little baskets I bought at Ikea last week, but to be fair they do have mouthwash and necessary potions in them too.
No matter the present or past circumstances, I keep my eye on the prize. Every free gift with purchase that I pass by is a coup for me. These are little samples and full size products that won't be cluttering up my space. Nordstrom having a free gift with purchase right now does not phase me when I keep my eye on the prize. Although, if I do study the contents of the gift it does make me falter slightly as I carefully analyze to see if I will actually like the gift and if I actually do need to order something. That is always a mistake. That is why they say keep your eye on the goal, and not the anti-goal.
One time when Julia spent the weekend with me, I scheduled makeovers for us at Chanel. This was our first visit together and before I knew about the basket. After the makeover I deliberated what I was going to get and ended up with an eyeshadow palette and an eyeliner. Julia didn't succumb to the temptation. She didn't seem all that impressed either. She is so strong in her makeup convictions that I envy her that. Me, if my eyes meet the makeup artist and I see she has a willing spirit, I am up on her chair so fast it will make your head spin. "Can I try our new colors on you?" is music to my ears. Just a few days ago I had a Bobbi Brown makeover and discovered that now I need their new CLC lipstick in Rose Petal and maybe the foundation too.
One day I am going to achieve the goal of simplicity in my makeup and skincare routine. I know it because I have made great strides in not being tempted by so many things. I "just say no" quite often to Sephora Insider rewards, to many, many gift with purchases, to spontaneous makeup purchases and to kits that are a good deal but that have items I don't need in them. I know that I am a makeup addict and even though it's "cool" to be that when you are perusing blogs and reading magazines, I think it's much cooler to know what you want and get that. To me, that is what the basket represents. It is a streamlined knowledge of who you are and most importantly who you are not.