The Thrifty Mama's Guide to More Life for Less!
Better second time around!
Ok so I can let you off your leashes a bit this week,let's go shopping!
I love shopping, well that is to say, I used to be a compulsive shopper particularly prone to buy unnecessaries when premenstrual (by the way, very bad idea to try on clothes in fitting rooms when suffering PMT- hot tip for you there) so I would go to get something for dinner and some home with two litres of topshelf icecream and a satin basque heavily reduced (basques are always heavily reduced by the way because no-one actually wears them outside of lingerie catalogues!). So I had lots of gorgeous clothes and impractical shoes and wore about a third of them. It had to stop.
But one must shop when one has a family and if one is me one wants gorgeous quality things but one forgets to change before gardening or has a child throw up on them or put a carrot in the c.d player and one does not want to spend all of one's money and have heaps of stuff going to landfill and cry because a $100 jumper has been ruined. So one buys second hand. And I do, for nearly everything I can I buy second hand (men's socks are not something to buy used in my experience...).
There are many great reasons to buy second hand and not many for buying new.
My lovely BMW 4WD is decidedly second hand but it means that I don't feel as bad and shrieky when the scruffy family piles in with paintings and muddy feet as I didn't spend $80,000 on the car, I spent the price of a new cheap and tiny Korean car but the ride quality is amazing!
Today I am wearing my favourite Diana Ferrari shoes, a Lisa Ho skirt, a great black and white maternity top and chunky beads, total cost of original comfy outfit- $6.50.
My Children can rough and tumble in their clothes (and they do- I can't stop them!) and I don't feel bad, the second hand clothes they wear have stood the test of time and cost next to nothing so when they spontaneously go blackberrying I am not looking at losing $40 of outfit (or if you buy cheap but new losing the outfit on it's first wash cycle- they always lose shape and fall apart on me!).
I love vintage and have furniture and clothes from the late 40's to early 60's and the stuff is indestructible, a lot of my vintage dresses are amazingly hardwearing and the colours are still as bright as when they wear made (and sometimes that is seriously bright!).
If you are serious about saving money and having the best you must start buying second hand- don't give me that old chestnut about not wanting to buy something someone else has worn or used- do you think that factories are gentle sterile places free from dust and germs? Of course not! They are filthy, dusty places, the clothes are dressed in strange chemicals and everything new needs a wash or wipe before use so why not do the same with second hand goods? Make sure you buy quality brands and look for wear, stains, rust etc and that you are paying a low price (I like to pay half new price or less for appliances, furniture etc and very little for clothes except genuine Vintage which will out last life on Earth).
Embrace markets, online auctions, op-shops, garage sales and classifieds and give your family quality that has stood the test of time for much less moula whilst using less of our children's future resources!