luxury for me, not for others

Discussion in 'English Only' started by dec-sev, Jul 14, 2010.

  1. dec-sev Senior Member

    Reading a Russian article about fashion I came across an expression that can be directly translated into English as "luxury for me, not for others". It's about really expensive but not "flashy" things. For example, a very expensive wristwatch wiht a very modest appearance that by no means gives the real price away. The idea is that an owner of the thing knows that he owns a very expensive piece and this is what matters. The fact that people around him are not aware of the real price of the piece is supposed to be of no importance to him.
    What amazes me is that the author of the article calls this approach "a concept / conception" and I wonder if in English there is a fixed phrase for this phenomenon.
    Thanks in advance.
  2. soccergal Senior Member

    English - US
    This is an interesting question. I can't think of a word or fixed phrase to exactly express this concept. (concept and idea are synonymous here). You could say something like only I knew the true value. I am interested in seeing what others have to add.
  3. Novanas Senior Member

    English AE/Ireland
    I personally see nothing wrong with the literal translation. If, e.g., a company started marketing a product using this as a slogan, I think no one would understand it at the beginning. (I wouldn't.) But bit by bit people would cop on to what it means. And once that happened, I don't think it's a bad slogan.

    Alternatively, perhaps "Pampering myself, not others." Or, "That's for me to know (and you to find out)." Or, "What they don't know (won't hurt them)." Just a few suggestions.
  4. dec-sev Senior Member

    Thanks for the suggestions!
    Before Nunty closes the thread ;) I'll say that it's not a slogan. The author uses many metaphors and this seems to be one of them. Af first I thought that that might be a calque from English, that's why I asked.
  5. Novanas Senior Member

    English AE/Ireland
    If it is a calque, like soccergal, I've never heard it.

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