Monday, July 4, 2011

July 4th

In the past, I've been a casual thrifter.  

In my student days, I would spend my lunch hours and between class time riffling through hanger after hanger - more often than not, in search of coats.  I had a real thing for coats.  And they were usually the most expensive thing to buy new (next to shoes).  My delight at finding a coveted item for $15 which would have cost nearly $200 new, was almost at pharmaceutical heights.

After Lucy started to walk (and my obsession with her having to have brand new, gorgeous clothes ended), I looked to ebay to start sourcing most of her clothes.  It began because I was nauseated by the gender specific colours we were restricted to in most department stores.  The only store I could find that included blue and yellow in clothes for girls, wore price tags that I would usually allocate for my own clothing (and could justify because I wasn't going to grow out of them in six months).  I loved how I could source the same brand of clothing online, second hand, at less than half the price - and have it still look brand new!

  When I found myself on a very tiny single income, more than eighteen months ago, my casual habit of thrifting clothes became a part-time gig.  After a very emotional and difficult separation, I found my previous wardrobe was falling down around my ankles - literally, and at a second glance it held a bit too much black influence for where I wanted the direction of my life to be heading.  The idea of spending $30 on a tee shirt, when I could pick up six for the same price thrifting, was a no-brainer.

I'm not precious about clothing.  Given half the chance, I wouldn't wear any at all.  But there are laws about that sort of thing, and aside from that, I live in Melbourne.  And winter here plummets to less than 10 degrees Celsius and clothes are fantastic for keeping you warm (their original purpose, I believe).  Depending on where you shop, quality clothes (indicated by reputable brands) can be found easily. Always in good condition and never more than $15 an item.  I feel so much happier paying $15 for an item of clothing no longer needed, than $120 for the same item new.

So even though now, that our family income far exceeds what it did when I was on a single parent income, I still find myself excited at the lure of the second-hand clothing store.  I'm not sure if it's a thrifting with money that appeals, or the recycling of no longer wanted (but perfectly useful) goods, or the thrill in the find - but I thoroughly enjoy it!  I purchased 27 items of clothing today for less than $200.  I'm switching my old wardrobe of mostly casual corporate to a comfier, casual smart ensemble.  With one hand we giveth, with the other, we taketh awayth - or something like that :o).

And saving cash on clothes frees up resources for dinner and a movie, a lovely end to a lovely day.

No comments:

Post a Comment