Possession obssi

You know you don’t need it, you know you can’t afford it. But you really, really want it. Katy MoAuIay explores the dark joys of buying stuff, gorgeous, useless stuff.

et‘s face it; no one wants what they need. It‘s why

credit cards. Weight-Watcher‘s and divorce laws were

invented. It‘s why we nip out for a loaf of bread and return home two hours later clutching flowery Wellingtons. an ipod and a butter dish shaped like a boat. It‘s why women walk a total of I33 miles around shops every year and men trail behind them complaining loudly.

Ian Wallace. a psychologist from lidinburgh. says that impulse shopping is all about creating happiness in a way that is not entirely logical. ‘lt‘s nothing to do with rational areas like health or awareness. but to do with esteem. Possibly the easiest way to acquire esteem is to buy it.‘

It seems we are helpless (and occasionally stupid) before beauty. With Glasgow and lidinburgh offering a string of shops crammed with items that are never going to make a top— ten-of-things—l-genuinely-need list. not to mention the gems you can source on the web. start fearing for your plastic as we guide you through what‘s on offer.

The shops

Opened in May in Glasgow‘s Merchant City. Ocean aims to make shopping for the home a thrilling experience. The thrills don’t come cheap. For £375. you can purchase the liden room. A huge inflatable sphere. it resembles an igloo made from plastic cushions and has enough space for four adults to crash out in. which is lucky. as sitting in it alone could be rather boring.

Alternatively. a mere £1495 can make you the proud owner of a toughened clear glass desk. It has no drawers or storage space and you may be constantly distracted by the sight of your own feet but no one can deny it looks amazing.

Home to a range of paraphernalia designed to clutter up your desk is Felix and Oscar. a clutch of shops in Glasgow‘s West lind. Self-styled ‘home of funky stuff for funky people‘. the ‘big‘ shop at 45‘) (ireat Western Road does exactly what it says on the tin. combining colourful branded fashion with a range of deliciously unnecessary home

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products from designers including Alessi and Guzzini and cosmetics from Bloom. A recently extended line of Paul Frank underwear featuring pink Y—fronts and vests for £24.95 guarantees that the monkey-inclined will go to bed happy. Finally. with stores in lidinburgh and Glasgow. In House is an impulse shopper's dream. Particularly coveted is a range of Francis Francis espresso and cappuccino makers in gorgeous metallic colours for £360. Purchase one and gaze lovingly at it before buying a Starbucks on the way to work.

The website

livery impulse shopper worth his or her salt knows that purchasing items on the web is the best way to avoid having to see actual money change hands. The ultimate site has to be www .iwantoneofthose.com a virtual home to gadgets such as wafer thin portable DVD players for £249. 'l‘hey’ll lit in the palm of your hand and show tiny. tiny films in wide screen.

Those who own a large swimming pool can stock up on a range of Seascooters which propel you underwater up to four kilometres an hour and make you feel rather like James Bond. Alternatively. they can take the effort (ie the swimming) out of snorkelling. Prices start from £179.

Finally. Star Wars lightsabers are available for El 1‘). We're not talking rubbish plastic here. but hefty replicas complete with sweeping light and digital sound effects so you won‘t be reduced to making ‘vhumrnrnmmmrnm‘ noises. although that doesn‘t mean you‘ll look any cooler. Perhaps money can’t buy you love. but for just over £l()(). the force will be with you.

Ocean, 70 Ingram Street, Glasgow. Tel: 0870 122 6592; Felix and Oscar, 459 Great Western Road, Glasgow. Tel: 0141 339 8585; In House, 28 Howe Street, Edinburgh. Tel: 0131 225 2888; www.iwantoneofthose.com