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At Womens Wear Daily's recent Luxury Forum, Lucky magazine vice president and publisher Gina Sanders said that there were actually people out there still buying stuff. She says that among 14 percent of American women "there is a thriving group of shoppers who are tired of watching what they spend and, for the most part, don’t mind paying full price for the items they want." We call those people crazy people, but Lucky calls them "alpha shoppers" and thinks they could be key to navigating the rocky luxury market.
Alpha shoppers think of shopping as a sport, which makes us feel better about skipping the gym last night. 93 percent of them plan to buy accessories this fall, and 78 percent of them plan to "splurge." We suspect we're not alpha shoppers because there isn't so much of that "planning" thing going on. Shopping with us doesn't involve saying: "Hmm. I will buy a new fall handbag full-price from a boutique that is exclusive and expensive and defines my style, then I will leave it to my daughters as a fashion legacy." We're more the type to troll sample sales and succumb to sudden flashes of "OMG, shoes!" What about you, are you guys alpha shoppers?—Elizabeth Licata
· Lucky Identifies Alpha Shoppers [WWD, subscription required]