Friday, July 18, 2008

economising this summer

summer is usually a good chance to practise some self discipline to attempt to be a little frugal.

i know how easy it is to flit money away on spontaneous wanders into town and drinks here and there, but this year this seems all the more relevant, with the papers (globally) building up extra concern over credit crunches and mortgage companies folding here and there, and the media creating words like "staycation"; even if our purses don't seem to be in a dire situation at the moment, it feels like they should be.
i find cutting down on my vices really rather difficult, so have come up with a few ideas to give a whirl over the summer with just the right balance of sacrifice and satisfaction.

clothes swapping
rather than a stroll through the shops, where your heart will inevitably attach itself to a pretty little mass produced dress, avoid them for a while and conduct clothes swapping get together with friends instead. i always find the novelty of somebody elses wardrobe exciting and when you consider the percentage of your wardrobe that you honestly don't wear, it seems only logical to share the love.

be a scab

there seems to be an unreasonable stigma surrounding freebies; undoubtedly fuelled by the materialistic messages projected by the world that we live in. ironic seeing as the very same consumerist driven industries are actually giving us stacks of free stuff and it's easy not to notice. are your ears pricking up? have a flick through your magazine archives. shampoo, conditioner, foundation, moisteriser, perfume? a whole collection of samples that can save you a trip to boots.

love your hair

no, not that kind. when it comes to getting my hair cut and i'm finding it difficult to part with the cash, i book myself into a student night at the local salon. it is either free or about a fiver and you can go for a cut or a colour. the standard isn't as high as a qualified hair dresser, but there is always a teacher on hand to help out students so i never worry about leaving with a green crew cut.

rediscover the library.

unleash your inner nerd, and dig out your library card. who said these places were out of touch? these days they supply free internet access, dvds and cds as well as books. not only does this mean you can save all the money you would fork out at a record shop, you also end up discovering completely new genres.

street teams

clothes, appearance and books etc are pretty much covered, but buying tickets for gigs is an inevitable money gobbler, so what's the solution? many bands and venues have street teams that you can sign up with. you may have noticed cool kids wandering around with a clipboard at the start of a gig asking for email addresses or manning the merchandising store. these clever thrifty people are getting to hang out as their favourite bands play, and for free too. alternatively, find out about writing gig reviews for a local paper.


K. said...

I can definitely tick off the suggestions of being a scab and going to the library. I find it so indulgent sometimes to just read the day away!

Anonymous said...

it's so great that bloggers are starting to take into account the economic situation! i'm just a student, with no bills to pay, etc, but even i'm noticing a change (especially because i have a car and petrol prices are shocking!). also, love to see library-encouragement :) on a sartorial note, i find whatever book i'm reading really influences the way i dress, so it's also a good way to find inspiration!

Miss at la Playa said...

I agree with the library idea! I used to go in summer some years ago... I should do it again!

Unknown said...

woah we must have blogger telepathy ;)
my conscience has been whispering these very things to me at night!!

It's funny because unlike the blogsphere days where i didn't have a job, it's becoming really easy to flit away whole pay packets on a cultivated designer crush or even cheapie sprees...because we can, you know?

Like how everyone was getting those marni shoes? hello peer pressure!

Boho chic said...

I used to exchange clothes with my friends... I should star again doing it!

Stefanie said...

This is such a wonderful post, you're a princess! I looooove clothes swapping, my friend just brought over a big bag of stuff I had picked out from his old clothes and I have new outfits for days!

Anonymous said...

thanks for the thrifty tips! clothes swapping is such a no-brainer, but I've never thought of it!! also I've heard of going to student nights for haircuts, the only issue with that is apparently you have to be quite clear with the haircutter, I had a friend who got her hair chopped completely off one time because of a descrepancy between her idea of a good haircut and the stylist haha. oh and i love the library, i might go today actually, its great when there's a book you're not 100% sure on but wanna look into. i would also suggest cooking your own food to cut costs too. even if you can't cook more than eggs, the great thing about summer is all of the fruit and veggies are in season, so it doesn't take much cash, effort, time, or skill to make a fab salad or something

michelle said...

Inspired me to want to go to the library! :P

Michelle said...

Love the thrift tips. One of my favorite activities is going to the library, I can spend all day there, and check out the fashion on the old ladies at the same time!

Mimi said...

I'm a fixed member at our local library and it's great.You pay only 2€ per year.Why should you buy books?I mean you will read them only one time right?

Anonymous said...

i LOVE the library this summer because of the fact that it is free! =) that alone has saved me so much money! books have gotten so expensive nowadays.

Lana said...

I think I'm gonna be a nerd! I saw that our local library orderd two Chanel Chic's from Weisberger, so that's something fun to read :D.

Kayla said...

these are really great tips because just like the rest of us, i too have been trying to save up for school.

i think the cheap/free things i've enjoyed a lot this summer are free things around town (like fireworks and outdoor concerts) and becoming an intense sale shopper. also, if i feel like i'm in a style rut, i know i can head over to goodwill and buy something old that may be trendy again for real cheap!

Crystal said...

Every single one of these tips is going into my money saving bible.

Bless your awesomely amazing little heart.


Héloïse J. said...

useful ideas when consumerism has touched upper levels.
clothes swapping is not that famous in greece unfortunately.

lara said...

Oh what a great post!! Great tips and you can do that all, also when the weather is bad! The only problem is that I live more on the countrysite and in the nearest library, I already know all the books, because it is so small ;), I think I have to go to a bigger one!
I really hope, that the weather in England will stay good (or become if the sun is already gone...)
and thank you for your cute comment :)

Vintage and Stardust said...

Thanks for those lovely thoughts!


Anna Pope said...

Great tips, especially about the library. Books are amazing either way, it doesn't matter where you get them!

yiqin; said...

!!! Thanks for the tips! I love clothes swapping too! Getting clothes for free while making new space for more clothes feels so damn good.

emsie said...

Brilliant post; some great advice. I think I may take a trip down to my local library sometime soon.

+20 said...

I have printed the post!hang it on my wall. thanx!:>