Why I will no longer save up to buy clothes

People have said I dress like a weirdo. People have also said I dress well. I take both as a compliment. When it comes to shoes and most of the clothes I wear, I aim to buy pieces that I don't normally see people wearing. It makes me feel unique and that there's only one of me. This view on fashion has led me to buy expensive pieces that I am no longer proud of.

Model on the catwalk, shoes detail, at the 1017 ALYX 9SM Fashion show in Paris, Spring Summer 2020, Menswear Fashion Week Collection designed by Matthew Williams  23 Jun 2019
Source: Archivio Mezzanotti/Shutterstock

After months of craving, I finally bought shoes from the fashion brand 1017-ALYX-9SM (formally known as ALYX). A brand in their own words; "provide high-quality materials mixed with subversive culture and modern craftsmanship". But for me, this was not the case.

After owning the shoes for no longer than a month, they started to fall into disrepair. I placed them in their shoe bag and the glue holding the materials of the shoes together started to fall apart.

This is not something you expect from an item that cost over £400 so I emailed the customer service team expecting a solution for my expensive heartache. However, their response only made matters worst. They stated that the damage was a result of natural wear and tear of the shoes over time.

Not only was this not true, but it also revealed terrible customer service from a brand I held in high regard. I was disappointed but determined that my money will not go to waste - so I embarked on a journey to get the shoes repaired.

I'll fix this myself: taking the shoes to repair shops

When I first heard ALYX wouldn't be helping me with the damage, I still had hope because there are many places to get your shoes repaired in the UK. However, after taking the shoes to at least five different repair shops I soon realised that there was actually no hope.

Firstly I took the shoes to Timpson, a British and Irish retailer that repairs and services anything from watches to cameras and shoes. But to my surprise, they told me the shoes could not be repaired.

No worries, there were plenty more avenues for me to try. I carried on my venture to local shoe repair shops including the Vibram Academy, situated in the heart of Shoreditch. Eventually, they all said the same thing and I was losing faith.

My final great idea was to send the shoes to Nigeria, the country I'm from - so I did. But you guessed it, even the dedicated hard-working Nigerians didn't have the talent to fix my shoes and they even got sent back in a worst-off condition.

Lessons learned: experiences over materialism

The point of me sharing this story is to not criticize the brand, shoe repair shops, or even my fellow hard-working Nigerians. But to share why I will never save money to buy expensive clothes again. Every experience is a lesson and this certainly didn't fall short.

Recently I returned from a holiday with friends abroad where we attended a three-day festival. Preparing for this holiday I bought zero new clothes. Luckily I have returned with zero damaged or lost clothing but memories that will last a lifetime. One of them is witnessing my mate burn a £100 shirt with an iron on the first day - luckily he didn't save money to buy it.

In terms of fashion, I have gone back to what matters.

Price does not determine how great your sense of style is when it comes to fashion, it never has. I have now returned to what got me interested in unique clothes in the first place, visiting charity and vintage shops. I believe this is the best way to avoid disappointment when a piece of clothing goes missing or ends up faulty. It is also a way to prevent fast fashion and cause less harm to our environment.

Oh and if you're wondering you can now find the ALYX shoes on my Depop page.

Do you save up to buy expensive clothing items? Let us know in the comments!

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