Yesterday I headed down to the outlet mall. I didn’t initially plan on spending any money. I just wanted to poke around to see if the deals were better than I can find at local department stores. I imagined that most of the items would be priced well below retail, but in fact many of them were priced on par. I looked around at the Gap, Ralph Lauren, Eddie Baurer, and a few other places. I didn’t see any good bargains so I happily walked out of each shop empty handed.

That is until I ventured into the Tommy Hilfiger store. I am nearly impossible to fit. It’s both a good thing and a bad thing. Good because on an average trip to the mall I can’t find anything that fits and therefore can’t spend any money. Bad because when I do find items that fit they often cost a lot of money. For some reason, the Tommy Hilfiger brand almost always fit me. My grandmother, who is quite a bargain hunter herself, is always searching the clearance isles of major department stores for Tommy clothing on sale. Over the years she’s used this technique to purchase the majority of my winter sweaters.

But yesterday in the Tommy outlet I found tons and tons of shirts and sweaters that fit. Most of the items that were already marked down had additional sales. For instance, a $65 sweater was on sale for $45 with an additional 50% off. I also found an additional 20% coupon at the customer service center. So I was able to buy sweaters that normally cost $65 and up for less than $20. I loaded up and my total came to approximately $150.

But as I got home and looked over the bill I began to feel a little guilty for my shopping giddiness. I noticed that two of the t-shirts I bought weren’t such good bargains, so I returned to the outlet today to exchange them. Of course, once back in the store I found a whole host of other items I didn’t see yesterday. So rather than returning the items and walking out of the store I ended up spending even more money. When all was said and done I spent roughly $180 on eleven items.

When I got home my husband was disappointed that I had even more bags with me. I told him the suggested retail price for all of the items totaled $388, but he knows I never would have spent full price for these items.

All in all I feel moderately guilty for spending so much money. On the other hand, because I am nearly impossible to fit I’m glad that I found new clothes. If I had to do it all over again. I would. But I am banning myself from shopping online or in the stores for at least a little while.