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Jennifer Marks

About Shopping (Not Textiles)

September 18, 2007

Just returned from back-to-back trips to China and France. What struck me as a shopper on both trips was how meticulously the packaging and bagging of one’s purchases is handled. It becomes a ceremonial element of the purchase itself, all the business with the tissue paper, the stickers, the ribbons and whatnot.

I found myself ruing the loss of that refined experience in the U.S. shopping transaction. Or I did at first. After a number of such experiences, the impatient American inside my head began silently screaming: "Throw it in a bag already and let me get on my way!"

Maybe we are more conditioned by our shopping environment than we realize. Or maybe that shopping environment reflects what we really want out of it more than we care to admit.