I managed to do something today I’ve been meaning to do for ages. Over a year ago I bought a warm black jacket for just £5 in a sale. The trouble is I’ve never actually worn it because the buttons were so revolting (to me anyway – they were black and gold and frankly a bit Dallas for my taste). I knew I hated the buttons when I bought it but I was sold on a) the price, b) the fantastic fit and c) the gently puffed sleeves. Anyway, I was having a rummage in my bag of things to get rid of when I came across an old black cardigan with large black buttons on it and realised they would fit the unworn jacket perfectly. I cut them off and replaced the hideous buttons with the plain black ones. The whole thing took about twenty minutes, including the time it took to find a needle and thread. I’m really pleased with this as I have a great jacket I can wear (though I might have to wait for a chillier day) and it didn’t cost me anything!
Speaking of rummaging in bags, I’ve decided to donate most of my old stuff to charity. I keep meaning to to list it on ebay or Amazon but between work, the band, the house and making the most of the small pockets of time I find to relax it just isn’t happening. I’ve felt vaguely guilty about this for ages. Surely if I was truly a shoestringer then I would make the effort to make every penny I could? Perhaps not. At least not right now. Thinking about it, the main point of this whole project has been to make small, lasting adjustments in the way I do things from managing my money, planning my meals and not wasting money on things I don’t really need to benefit me on the long term. I won’t be going mad in the shops again (I hope!) so it shouldn’t really get to the point where I’ve got tonnes of things to get rid of. Plus, I really think charity shops are great. I know people often complain when another charity shop opens but I think they are amazing. They raise money for great causes, provide affordable clothing, reading and knick-knacks for those who can’t afford to shop elsewhere all of the time and promote recycling. What’s not to like? So I’m very happy with my decision to take my things there. I might keep a few bits back to sell but the majority of it will go to the chairty shop.
There are several chairty shops in the town where I live and also the town where I work so I’m going to try to divide my donations between them as they are all in aid of great charities and projects. I’m doing one bag at a time. Here’s what my first one includes:
- a pair of black shoes (that murder my feet)
- an unused make-up bag
- a pair of white shoes (that I bought in the wrong size and couldn’t be bothered to take back)
- a pair of turquoise espadrilles (that I can’t walk in)
- a pair of flip-flops (which won’t stay on my feet)
- a brown leather belt (with tassles that really get on my nerves)
- 5 paperback novels
- a plastic Elvis in a box (that I can’t fathom why I bought)
- a large beach bag to carry it all in (it came free with a magazine last year)
It is quite funny seeing how much I used to buy and keep for no good reason. Even after a few months of being careful it seems completely alien to have ever spent money on things that were clearly no good. The only thing I really got much out of were the books and even they weren’t so great that I want to keep them. Lesson learned…
From the challenge-a-day list:
- Making good use of the things I already have: combining two items of clothing I never wore to create one usable garment
- Decluttering: Preparing a bag for the charity shop