Freedom of shopping well, well within your means

This is the third of three posts about shopping on a budget.  Since Brittany and I have such different views on shopping on a budget (or just shopping in general), we thought it would be great for people like me that aren’t as up on the trends ;-).  Enjoy!

Opposites attract: Brittany and I have come completely opposite experiences when it comes to shopping on our budgets. I have never been a super trendy person or cared too much about trends. I buy a few things that I like and are somewhat “trendy” and stick with it for a couple years. I don’t love to shop, I don’t look at fashion magazines, I don’t wish I had the trendiest outfit of all my friends, and I don’t really care if others think I’m trendy. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy an occasional shopping trip and I like to look nice when I’m in public, but it’s not something that’s on my mind often.

Shopping Blog

Here are examples of my not-super-trendy-but-not-a-mess wardrobe. Summer dress, loose blouse, work clothes, and workout clothes.

I work hard for the money, so hard for the money: Part of my indifference with fashion comes from never really having money. I was raised in a family that taught me that I had to work for my money and it wasn’t something I just got from my parents when I wanted something. Looking back, I’m very glad I was given that experience because it has helped me value money as an adult. Since I was able to start working at 15 (pool lifeguard), I have pretty much earned most of the money that I was able to use for my own expenses (dinner with friends, clothes, movies, etc). When I went to college, I learned how fast money could go, especially when I moved into an apartment after my sophomore year (you actually have to pay for water?!). In graduate school when I took out student loans to cover tuition and my living expenses, I really learned how expensive “living” was (I have to spend almost ALL of my financial aid refund on bills and rent…what?!). Therefore, I have never really had a ton of extra money to go shopping with…so I never did. I rarely shopped, and when I did, I would feel an immense amount of buyer’s remorse and worried that I wouldn’t have enough money left before my next paycheck or by my next financial aid refund.


This is not the most fair picture of my clothes because about half are James'.

This is not the most fair picture of my clothes because about half are James’.

“I’m too poor to be cheap”: Because of my “few and far between” shopping trips, I bought the cheapest clothes from the cheapest stores that I could find. Someone once told me, “I’m too poor to be cheap”. This saying does not mean to go out and spend $100 on a pair of jeans, but it’s saying to buy things that are going to last. If you buy a cheap shirt and it’s ruined within 3 months (and it fits weird so you hate it), then you just wasted $10-$20 that you spent on it. If you buy a quality shirt (that fits better and you wear it 2x/week…shhh!) and it lasts 1-2 years, then you’re $25-$35 investment was well worth it.

“Tell your money where to go. Don’t wonder where it went”: Now that I’m on a budget and know where my money is going, I can save up or use my allotted spending money to pay for clothes that I want. Not only have I eliminated buyer’s remorse, I have become more trendy, have clothes that I actually enjoy wearing, and have found that shopping is actually pretty fun! Brittany had to cut down because of her budget, but I was able to GO SHOPPING because of my budget! It’s such a free and relieving feeling!

Most of these are mine except the huge pile of t-shirts on the left (again, James').

Most of these are mine except the huge pile of t-shirts on the left (again, James’).

What to do: If you’re like me, set aside $25 from your 2-week spending money envelope for a few weeks. By that time, you’ll have $75 for SHOPPING! Use it to buy something you’ve had your eye on for a while…it feels so good to buy it knowing that you can afford it! Save up every 3 weeks and you’ll be guilt-free spending $600 a year on clothes that you paid for in CASH!

Thanks for reading!

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♥  Sam

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