Browse Tag: thriftlovechallenge

January Challenge Reflection

Infinity ScarfWith my first month of my thrift challenge complete, I am already amazed at the results. I budget the rest of my life for essentials but it had not occurred to me that I should be budgeting my entire life including entertainment, not just bills. After mentioning the idea to a few friends and coworkers the general consensus was that I would be shocked when I started seeing the numbers. I try not to think about what I probably spent over the past year and instead focus on what I’ll be saving this year, and from now on.

I had no idea what to start my budget goal at, based on the Thrifty Threads Challenge, I knew $50 was probably too low for a weekly shopper. I set my goal at $80 with the expectation that I would gradually try to lower that amount. I was truly surprised that I just about met my goal save for $2. I was doing really well up until the last trip keeping my totals under $20 and its funny, now I feel like I splurged on the last one at $31. I know there were many occasions last year where I left with $50 worth of merchandise.

It was definitely an eye-opener seeing the amounts I was bringing in that wasn’t perfect. I now am very particular about what I decide to take home with me. I do not shrug when I see a stain or a seam open, I leave it behind. I am no longer willing to bend on damaged goods. I feel as though my closet has become more precious, the space in it only available to the items I really like. If it isn’t easily altered to fit I leave it behind.

I also developed a new outlook on my closet, frequent rotation is not a bad idea. I do tire of things very easily so consignment and donation are great ways I can keep a comfortable amount in my closet. People seem to think I just accumulate but in working in consignment, its pretty easy for me to recycle my unwanted clothing. Now there are plenty of times when my things are too worn, thus the issue a lot of the time with second hand clothing. But there are plenty of items I have bought because I felt attracted to them – only to realize that I liked them for someone, not necessarily me.

In tracking my sales of clothing at the store I was blown away to see the results at the end of the month. $239.25 in just clothing sales alone! I also have the benefit of selling my handcrafted earrings at the store which brought in another $128.25! For a grand total of $367.50! Talk about a great source of additional income or “cushion” as it were. In using only account money towards buying items from the store I am able to keep my paycheques strictly for my billing budget. Brilliant!

Thrift Finds

Thrift FindsDuring tonight’s Thursday thrift adventure I found a couple unique items plus a nice Gaiam yoga mat I had been looking for (not pictured). The best yoga mat I’ve ever had was a cheap one from Value Village, so I have been watching for another one to try. I had heard Gaiam mats are hit and miss so here’s hoping it is non-stick!

I started my evening with a stop at the jewellery rack. I was drawn to two pieces, a gold chain with anchor pin pendant and a multi coloured necklace. I later found out the one necklace is actually a $50 Fossil necklace, score! I think the anchor one will be really fun for summer.

I then veered over to the assorted housewares section and heard a piece of apple green pottery calling my name. It’s not perfect, it’s full of drips – and I love it! It has found a very cozy home in my kitchen.

With a 30% off coupon I snagged all these pieces for under $20!

1. Gaiam Yoga Mat $7
2. Pottery $6
3. Necklaces $5
Total: $20

Scarves for Spring

SCARVESValue Village has both new and donated clothing. Their new section consists of a mass amount of cheap shoes, boots, accessories and leggings. I don’t tend to give it a second glance because I find more appeal in the hunt for unique items not buying mass produced. Something this winter season did catch my eye but based on my philosophy I just didn’t feel for the thin quality that they were worth spending $12.99. These vibrant scarves, each package comes with a solid colour and a patterned one. Its quite simply the patterns and bright colours that have me hooked!

I looked at them a few times over the two months they had been displayed around the store but I just kept shrugging at the price. Did I really need more scarves? I could probably find a thrifted one that’s a better fabric… All these constant debates in my head. I always left them behind. I popped in on Thursday evening to purchase a gift certificate to add to my friend’s birthday gift and saw they had been moved to a clearance table.

In huge red letters the sign said 75% off red tagged items… I thought it couldn’t hurt to look to see what was left over. There were plenty of scarves but none that caught my eye. I decided to sift a little further into the pile and suddenly there they were. The two sets I had admired, and only those two were left at the bottom of this pile. One printed with a matching blue scarf and the second with a deep pink. The debate began in my head once more, but doing the quick math in my head – there wasn’t much left to debate over as my major hurdle was cost for quality. For $3 a set that puts each scarf at $1.50… where are you going to find such cute scarves for Spring for that price?!

Buying “new” wasn’t in my original plan for my thrift challenge, but if we are looking at budget smarts this is definitely one good move as I love my scarves!

Smart Thrifting

JANUARY8-THRIFTLOVECHALLENGEToday we are experiencing the worst parts of a Canadian winter, ice followed by snow, strong winds and a plummeting temperature of -22. For no particular reason I decided today would be the first trip I make to the local Value Village. I became one of those shoppers that I deem “crazy” for going out in such horrendous driving conditions. In my own defence, it is on my route home from work!

With the challenge idea in mind I began to practice the art of window shopping, simply walking up and down aisles not really searching just being in the moment. It was soothing just to let my eyes enjoy the array of colour, texture and pattern. The items in their home decor section were particularly interesting and plentiful today due to it being after the holidays. I’m sure much like myself, many people took their time off to clean the closets and purge to start a new year fresh. All the strange and wonderful things made it a rather exciting trip.

I spent most of my time in the footwear department as its one of the hardest things to thrift. I did find plenty of shoes and boots that fit surprisingly but trying on footwear at the end of a long day with sore feet isn’t exactly ideal. I found a pair of lace up shoes by Forever 21 that I just couldn’t leave behind as they were exactly what I had hoped to find for months!

1. Shoes Forever 21 $10
2. Slippers $3
3. Scarf SportyGirl $5
Total: $20

The 2015 Thrift Challenge

As discussed in my post regarding Patrice’s Thrifty Threads 365 challenge, I would like to begin one of my own. In her version, she has a monthly budget of $50 and can only shop thrift for the year. Now where we differ is that I don’t ever shop in retail stores so compared to most fashionistas I’m already one up. I can only imagine that most of my would-be savings goes into thrift as I use it as a form of relaxation and therapy (shop therapy!) – which is also the opposite of Patrice.

I thought for my “challenge” I would set the parameters a little differently to suit my lifestyle and interests. Outlined as follows:

1. Limit store visits. Up until now I would go thrifting several times a week, sometimes finding things I had to have – sometimes nothing at all. If you go too often you will keep seeing the same things but if you wait a few days there will be some exciting new treasures. My goal this year is to only thrift by myself on Thursdays (Thrifty Thursday!) but I’m not restricting that to not going if someone else asks me to join them.

2. $80 per month limit. As this is my first challenge I’m not totally sure what goal to set for my limit. $50 is plenty if you are only planning to go once a month, but I feel that by going weekly (and not being limited to clothing) a higher budget might be in order. My goal will be to spend less each month.

3. Report money earned back. I do have it easy in this respect as I work at a consignment store and have the ability to earn back some of the money spent by consigning my unwanted clothing in the store. On the other hand, there is greater temptation in my career because I am presented with fabulous items regularly. I would like to keep a monthly record of income generated from rotating my closet.

You can follow my challenge posts on Instagram with the hashtag: #thriftlovechallenge

Let’s make this a great year of smart thrift and strong budgeting!