Well it turns out that all those friends had very good reasons for not inviting me to their jewelry parties all these years. I'm not going to say I'm cheap because I'm not when it comes to important stuff, but let's just say that I cannot justify $150 on a piece of costume jewelry that I might wear once a month, at most. Although, if I spent that much on a piece of costume jewelry, I think I'd find a way to wear it every day, maybe even to bed each night. I was wildly disappointed. I had hoped to get a lot of Christmas shopping done and maybe even buy something for myself, but I knew I was in trouble when I walked in and saw that none of the pieces had prices on them. There are only two reasons not to put prices on things: Everyone who's attending has so much disposable income that they don't have to consider cost, or everyone who's attending will be so stunned by the prices that if they see the price tag before they try anything on, you won't sell so much as one earring. I think the small group fell into the latter category, although I'll speak only for myself.
I tried on a few very lovely necklaces, and then the saleswoman showed me how I could make those necklaces look even better by layering more necklaces - and hundreds of dollars -- on top of the original. Some of the combos would have been upward of $400, which I find absolutely shocking. I just can't believe people have money to throw around like that.
Of course, I felt like a heel not buying anything, which is sort of the point of these parties. You have some crackers and cheese, drink a glass of wine, talk a bit with the other guests, and suddenly you feel as though you will be ridden out of town on a rail if you don't buy something. So I found one of the elusive catalogs and flipped through until I found some small earrings that were not on display but were reasonably priced. I bought some Christmas gifts for my nieces and called it a night.
I'll be back later with some thoughts on something other than necklaces.