I'm trying not to try to keep up with the Jones'

People who know me know that I like to buy stuff. I mean, even if you don't know me, the fact that I blog about fashion might be kind of a giveaway. Really, how many times can you talk about the same dress, or pair of shoes, or piece of jewelry? Acquisition is part and parcel of keeping a blog fresh and interesting.
Speaking of fresh, Eddie Munster hair, do or don't?
I make decent money; not enough to go crazy with, but enough to be comfortable and afford some luxuries. I do have to prioritize what I want to spend my money on, though, and lately my priorities have leaned pretty hard towards new clothing. In the past few months I think I've bought three or four dresses, maybe the same number of skirts, a few tops, a new pair of shoes, some jewelry. None of the pieces that I've purchased have been very expensive by themselves, but it all adds up pretty quickly.
I've talked a little bit about blogging and body image, and the way that putting yourself out there on the internet can create pressure to look a certain way, and can also warp the way that you see yourself. Buying new things works in kind of the same way. When I buy stuff, particularly from brands that are popular with other pinup and vintage loving girls, I can write a review and tag the company in it, and the company will then usually promote the post, which gives my blog a boost. I'm always looking for more traffic, so I tend to repeat behaviors that get it for me, which means that I end up buying more new stuff. I'm like Pavlov's dogs, but with printed circle skirts instead of white lab coats.
A skirt that I love and have never worn outside the house. It's not in the best shape, but with a little love it would be a stunner. This photo is one that I took when I was trying out my corset for the first time, which is why it looks so weird.
I wouldn't say that I'm a terribly ambitious person. My goals in life are pretty modest - make enough money to live comfortably and a travel a little bit; find a partner who makes me happy and whom I can make happy in return; do a little good in the world where I can. Of course, I also want to look good doing all of that. But the thing is, I'm kind of competitive, and if I'm doing something I want to do it really well. That means that now that I'm digging into the blogging thing, I'm always pushing myself to promote it in any way that I can, to write the most interesting posts that I can, to get the most eyes on it that I can.
Ideally, it would be nice to make a little money off of it, or maybe parlay it into some kind of paying writing gig. As I've mentioned before, though, it's hard to get paid to write. Lately I've been trying to remind myself that this should be fun, something that I do because I like it, and maybe to hone my writing skills and develop my voice, rather than something that I'm resting all of my hopes for the future on.
Daffny from A Vintage Nerd wrote a great post about not comparing yourself to other bloggers (or other people in general), and it was a good reminder for me to keep things in perspective. Although I would love to be able to spend whatever I want to new clothing, I'm just not one of those women who can afford to pick up the latest from Pinup Girl Clothing every month, and that's ok. It's great for them that they're able to do it, and I'm sure I'll always have a touch of wardrobe envy when I see them showing off their fabulous outfits. Sometimes I just need to give myself a mental slap in the face and tell myself to snap out of it, a la Cher in Moonstruck. I have a lot of nice things, more than most people, in fact. The only thing that I'm going to gain by trying to keep up with other people is a lot of dissatisfaction, with a side of deep-fried credit card debt.
This domino print skirt is a leftover from my lolita days, and it's actually pretty cute! I'm always lusting over the novelty prints that I see other girls wearing, but I have the bad habit of ignoring the ones that I already have.
This weekend I did a boatload of laundry and reorganized my closet and dresser. I did a couple of repairs that I've been putting off, spent some time getting stains out of pieces, and even did a little ironing. Going through my wardrobe and seeing all of the stuff in there that I haven't worn in a while, or particular outfits that I had brainstormed about but had never gotten around to wearing, was surprisingly satisfying. With all of my clothes clean and put away, I also realized that I don't have a whole lot of room for anything else. At the very least, I need to buy more hangers before I buy more clothes.
I also found the dress that I thought was lost for good! It was at the bottom of one of my boyfriend's boxes of clothing, which was only unpacked last week.
I'm also refocusing some of my mental energy on other priorities, like travel. My boyfriend and I have been talking about taking a trip to Europe for a few months now, but with our move a couple of months ago, him starting a business with his brother, and me expanding my vintage wardrobe, we haven't managed to put a whole lot of money aside. However, Google launched their Google Flights feature not too long ago, and one nifty thing about it is that you can view a bar graph showing the average cost of a flight to your destination throughout the year. That means that you can actually see when the cheapest time to fly is, rather than having to guess and check. Having a good idea about what I'm going to have to pay and how long I have to save is making it a lot easier not to order something new just because it happens to be on sale.
Na na na na na na na na Iceland!
Does anyone else struggle with this? How do you keep your blogger envy at bay?