Actually it so happened, that as new parents (and even new grandparents, aunts) we would be tempted to buy stuff for her - clothes, toys, accessories, board books and games. And as a result, by her first birthday, we had a whole lot of everything for her. The gifts on TV's first birthday only added to the largely underutilized treasure of baby stuff.
Also, TV is hardly a toy person. Her love for any new toy, stays only for the first half an hour until she has explored the 'new thing'. Then ocassionally she plays with any of her toys for a maximum of 5 min. I don't know if its same with all babies and toddlers. Or that we have not been able to really get her and keep her interested in the toys.
So post her first birthday, if we come across something really really exciting and worth taking, we have TV explore the toy in the store itself. We leave her with it for 15 min while we would check something else. If her excitement stays and if she doesn't shrug and say 'done' then we pick it up.
Even in case of clothes, she has her mind and opinion on what we should buy. As for shoes / accessories, TV is ready to try them on, look in the mirror, look around at others to see what they say and then make a choice.
There have been times when she has made demands for things we never intended to buy. And we have so far been able to not give in to those 'oh-so-cute' looks. We either convince or distract her and move on.
Thanks to her exposure to the whole process of shopping - she has now learned a few key lessons;
1. Make a list of things you want to buy and stick to the list ('that's not on our list' a good tool to convince her that we dont need abc yet)
2. Look around, try and make a choice.
3. You cannot just lift things from a shop. You need to 'pay' for it.
4. That's how things come in our house.
5. It's indeed hard work
6. Mom and dad also need some things for themselves
Involving her in this highly important activity also leaves us some room to spend time shopping for ourselves. And may I add that she's turning out to be an extremely helpful daughter who would also pick up things for us - 'this yon (one)?' just the way we do it for her!