Maybe expensive retailers cutting back is a good thing. Were there places like these in the 1960’s and before? Not really and people seemed to do fine. I don’t think these chains should close completely, but do we need so many malls? You see a sub-division going in in the Valley, and close by there is a Starbucks (whom I despise), a Bed Bath & Beyond, a cell phone store, a chain restaurant or 2 (PF Changs, or something similar), etc. They build malls for the subdivisions, to me that is nuts! I go to BBB a few times per year, when I NEED something from there. Like silicone baking mats or something useful.
I have stuff from PB. I could never afford to buy furniture from there, it is quite pricey. I just got DD a PB duvet cover, but she NEEDS a duvet cover, and I got it way cheaper on e-bay…. She needs a mattress, etc. These aren’t things I am buying for an reason other than necessity. A lot of our friends have more $$$ than we do, and that’s fine. We just can’t afford to take all the same trips they do, or drive the more expensive new cars. That’s fine though, we don’t need those things. And while they may view them as a part of life, to us they are a luxury and we treat them as such. I am going to school so we can have a more comfortable life, not to drive a luxury car. DH and I live pretty frugally, but that’s my nature! I like quality VS quantity. While DD didn’t get a bunch of toys for the holiday’s she got quality ones. I think as the economy suffers there is def a middle class gap that is getting bigger. We are not upper middle class, and if they continue to thrive we will get further from them. I used to care more abut “keeping up with the Joneses”, but now I care more about living a healthy eco-friendly life. I went from Coach bags to ones made from upcycled materials. From Via Spiga shoes to Simple shoes. And I respect myself more now than ever. I like the values I am teaching my daughter!