Stingy Always Pays Twice


Still gleaming over my recent Lardini find, I decided to order more clothes from Yoox’s Final Sale. I settled on three jackets and a pair of jeans, all by makers unknown to me. The prices were cheap, however, so I decided to proceed with the purchases, against my better judgment, and entered my credit card information.

When the items arrived, my excitement turned to sadness. First jacket by a company called Tonello, while in my size, was at least a size too small; no alterations would allow it to fit properly. The second jacket by a company called Deuxieme, suffered from the same problem. I am no body builder, but these Italian fashion designer labels are not meant to fit grown men. The third jacket by Messagerie was too roomy and will require at least $50 worth of alterations (sides taken in, extra fabric taken from the back, faux buttons opened), where the original price of $55 is no longer enticing. As a result, I decided to sell the jackets. I will keep the jeans by Patrizia Pepe, but this is the first and last time I will buy fashion jeans. It will take a while for me to be able to comfortably wear them in public without thinking of Bruno, but my fiancée likes them, so the worst I can do is to make her happy.

What made the matters worse is that the sale of my merchandise was final.  I am out $312, no big deal, but I could have spent the money in a wiser manner. The “likes” of Messagerie, Tonello, and Deuxieme are not exactly household names, and I should have been much more discerning as a buyer rather than rely on cheap prices, especially when there is a perfectly fitting mainline Zegna jacket available at my local Saks for $299.

Overall, this experience taught me a valuable lesson: don’t buy clothes because they are on sale but buy them because you like them and they will fit you well. Hence the saying my great grandmother always used to say resonated in my brain: the stingy always pays twice.


  1. Jack Johnson said:


    Came upon the website through google, researching three button suits! I am a young college graduate entering the daily grind in Nashville,Tn. My question is about your post “There Is Nothing Fat About Lardini”. Three button Lardini blazer shown in the picture is exemplary. I have visited yoox site, but it is not listed. Is there anyway possible for me to acquire that particular blazer!


    October 2, 2009
  2. Michael said:

    I hate buying online for that very reason. You can’t try them on, so you don’t know whether they will really fit or even whether they will look good on you. For that reason I don’t shop online.

    I also tend not to shop at sales either. Seeing all these things at low prices has in the past made me buy lots of things that I ended up rarely if ever wearing. Later I think “I bought X because it was cheap, but if I had spent that same money plus a bit more, I could have bought Y which I actually prefer”. So after a couple of summer/winter sales, I finally managed to learn to control myself. I now typically know beforehand what I want to get in a sale; I’ll usually pay full price for whatever I want right away, or if I think it will sell out in my size before the sale; then I make a mental note of things I would like but don’t want to pay full price for, things I’m willing to wait for, and then during the sale I go for those. Or, if I find new items I like but haven’t seen before, I ask myself whether I would have bought them had they not been on sale. Basically I try to take the price out of the equation, to see whether I actually like the item itself or if I only like it because of the attractive price.

    October 3, 2009
  3. Patrick said:

    Well the only time it might be safe is if you’ve already worn a particular brand, and know what size you are in that brand and type of clothing (blazer, trousers, etc., though sizes often vary even within the brand), or if the online store has a generous return policy that assumes that you are purchasing multiple sizes of the same piece in order to keep the size that fits and return the others.

    October 5, 2009

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