And after careful consideration, I decided to go ahead and deck the shaman out in a full set of heirlooms. Normally I wouldn't bother -- experience isn't that hard to come by, and leveling is ridiculously fast these days. But I like the look of the shaman set, and I figured at least this way I could avoid the dreaded clown suit as I leveled. The XP bonus is a side effect that is currently rocketing my little shaman through levels far faster than I really care for, but at least she looks nice while she's merrily zapping things with lightning.
I am curious though -- how many of you immediately deck an alt in heirlooms the second you make it? Do you do it for the obvious benefits like the XP bonus and armor you never have to worry about replacing? Do you like the look of heirloom gear? Do you wish there were more options for heirlooms -- belts, gloves, boots? Or do you prefer leveling old school, sans-heirlooms, just wearing what you happen to pick up on your journey?