Is it a good buy? Or just a bargain?

sale

There are always good sales in July.

Actually, these days there are good sales in every month, but I especially notice the good ones in July. That’s when I’m trying not to spend any money.

During a No Spend Month, I don’t set foot inside a mall. Not that I go to the mall very often during a normal month. In fact, I don’t even like to shop at Target. (Am I allowed to say that on the internet? It’s true. Please don’t throw things at me.)

One day last week I surprised my daughter with a trip to the mall so she could run around the children’s play area. All of a sudden, I saw lots of stuff that I didn’t even realize I needed until I saw them on sale. Especially sales for children’s clothes.

Just a couple of days earlier I had congratulated myself on having fewer baby clothes this time around. Maybe it’s due to having a boy instead of a girl. He has enough clothes for one week before the drawer is empty and I wash the laundry. Fewer clothes means everything is well-worn and there will be less to sort and store later.

It certainly doesn’t hinder the cuteness to have fewer clothes:

But that day I was faced with tiny pants at 50 percent off, and I started to waver.

I almost buckled. I tried to justify them. I tried to think of a reason to need them. Perhaps he didn’t need them right now, but what if I bought the next size up?

Fortunately, I knew what clothes we had in the next size. The way I store children’s clothes is quite likely organizational overkill, but it works and the clothes stay organized.

I chose not to buy them, and I thought about the clothes we already had instead.

It’s not easy to let go of the chance to buy something nice at a great price. There’s a thrill involved.

If I bought those pants, I could have saved 50 percent. By not buying them, I saved 100 percent.

Doug and I decided a while ago that we were done buying things for the apartment. We’ve decided it is good enough. We could still be thinking of improvements, or ways to change it up, but we think it’s done. That’s a benefit to having a small home: it doesn’t take much to furnish, and you don’t want it to be cluttered.

In the same way, I don’t feel like I need any more new clothes. I’ve been trying to put the theory that “less is better” into practice and wear what I have.

I even did less grocery shopping this month, so we could eat more of the food we have on hand.

You cannot have a simple life or a simple home unless you can pass up a sale or choose to miss a bargain.

You won’t be surrounded by a lot of extra stuff, and that’s worth more than discounts.

Besides, there will always be another good sale.

Do you feel drawn to stuff when it’s on sale? Or do you just buy what you need and like? One time I heard that you shouldn’t buy something on sale unless you would be willing to pay full price, but I’m not sure I always do that. How much do you care about finding a bargain?
About Rachel

I write about practical tips that will help you simplify at home. Connect with me on Pinterest and Twitter.

Comments

  1. I so totally agree with you! There are so many times when I’ve seen something on sale and practically tried selling it to myself. Luckily, I’ve held back and yup, like you not saved 50% or 70 % but a whole 100%.
    I firmly believe, its a steal only when you need the deal. :-)

    Prerna´s last post…5 Simple Ways to Save Money on Groceries

  2. unewolke says:

    nice smile! he looks like your daughter!

  3. What a darling little guy!!! Look how big he has grown – cute!!!

    I have said it before and I will say it again… The best saving is to stay out of the store!!! (http://www.se7en.org.za/2009/05/06/se7en-dont-often-shop)

    With one or two kids we used to go to the mall as an outing – trust me with eight that isn’t much fun!!! And I used to buy all sorts of bargains – activity books for the entire world, with mostly boys who never sit down what was I thinking… I could go on. We live on much less money now with more kids because the thought of going to the shops is rather an unpleasant one!!! And less stuff is always better whatever the hunter-gatherer in us thinks!!!

    se7en´s last post…Se7en’s Celebrities- Rachel from One Pretty Thing…

  4. I try to keep a list of items we’re likely to need in my head (if it’s something hard to find, I’ll share it with some bargain hunting friends and family) and then buy those things when I see a sale. The only time I’ll buy ‘because it’s on sale’ is food – sometimes I’ll buy something ‘exotic’ because it’s on sale figuring that we’d need dinner anyway, and this is an opportunity to have something special without going over what I’d usually pay for dinner.

    I also stock up on certain food items (my husband will only eat x brand of ketchup, y brand of mayo. He’s addicted to pickles. We both like pasta. The kids like olives.) If they’re on sale, I buy as much as I can carry with one caveat. We’re Jewish and we clear our whole pantry for Passover. So I try to time it so we’re out of ketchup, mayo, mustard, pasta – or down to our last package in April.

    LeahGG´s last post…Ephraim – Cuter than Ever

  5. When I made the discovery that sales happen *over and over*, it was an ephiphany for me. I no longer felt pressured to buy the laundry soap that was a great deal (and it was) – I still had two bottles full from the last time it was a great deal!!

    I really HATE clutter, so I never buy more than I think I’ll need – even grocery story bargains. Being single and in a 2BR apartment, I have little space (even if I do have a garage). I can’t imagine why I’d ‘save money’ by buying 6 packs of toilet paper on sale – the total dollar amount is MORE than if I just buy what I need! They say ‘you won’t have to buy it for awhile’ – but really, if you do that kind of thing for every item and every sale, it’s toilet paper this week and laundry detergent next week and beef the week after – you go broke!! :-)

    I guess I just never understood that whole concept. :-)Don’t hate me!

  6. Denise C. says:

    First Tom is such a handsome little guy! What a GREAT smile he has!
    Second, I will pretend that you did not say you did not like shopping at Target. ;)

    It depends for me & shopping. I do not like clothes shopping for myself at all. My wardrobe consists of 8 items. My kids, I don’t mind so much, I do not buy them a whole lot. I figured if they had a ton of clothes, not all of them would get worn, & that would be money wasted.

    I too am focusing on the “less is more” concept. I am actually paring down on more stuff. If we do not love it, or use it, out it goes.

    • 8 wardrobe items is amazing Denise! I’m trying to picture it. It must feel like being on a trip with a small suitcase.

      • Denise C. says:

        I actually need to replace some items because they are so worn! The only items I did not include were my running shorts & running shirt, since I wear those only for running. It’s great because everything I own gets worn, (a lot), but bad at the same time since I always have to make sure everything is clean! :)

      • I had to come back and read the comments to this post and I love this one!!! You know when they have these makeover pictures on tv and folk bring in their clothes in suitcases I just want to laugh!!! I also have 8 items: two long sleeve t-shirts, two short sleeve t-shirts, one long and one short sleeved fleece top and two pairs of jeans. It’s enough!!! Really… I wasn’t using anything else I had so I gave it away!!! My kids have two of everything as well… When we traveled overseas we plonked everyones clothes into one bag and we were packed!!! Our clothes do get a lot of wear and the kids certainly wear theirs out as they grow out of them but I feel that they aren’t wasting anything and that fits well with me.

        se7en´s last post…Se7en’s Celebrities- Rachel from One Pretty Thing…

  7. I try not to go to malls “just for fun” anymore.
    I don’t really like it there, but I can’t resist looking at some stuff (clothes, furniture, food…) I dont’t need and sometimes I buy it too. Mostly, it’s not a bargain. I totally agree with you on that.

  8. This post was written for me. I have such an issue when it come to “saving” money on items that are on sale. I drive myself crazy trying to find a home for all of my “good deals.” I am going to bookmark this and read it whenever I start to waver. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

  9. What a cute little guy! He looks quite spiffy in that outfit – and certainly not suffering from your careful purchasing.

    I used to go to the mall for entertainment as well – now I rarely ever go. I also was a “sale” victim – I’ve cured myself of that addiction by the realization, like others, that sales come and go – to quote Albert in The Birdcage, “Albert, you can always get more toast”! I used to have a closet full of sale purchases and nothing to wear becase I only bought it because it was marked down, not because it went with what I already had.

    Now I do much of my shopping at thrift stores. We live in a fairly affluent area, so I’m able to find great things. I still focus on what I need, not just that it’s cheap.

    But, Target – I’m a serious fan and force myself to limit trips there. I do think you’re on some Internet “watch list” for dissing on Target ! HA

  10. I LOVE your quote about how not buying it saved you 100%. I may have it cut into vinyl and stuck on my wall as a reminder.

    I actually went to the mall for the first time in ages with the purpose of hitting those sales! I did make it out with a few things for the oldest child (no hand-me downs), the youngest (the only boy) and myself (some much needed tops that don’t have bleach/grease/baby food stains on them). I was pretty happy with what I got and even avoided buying some ADORABLE but totally unnecessary red patent leather heels despite constant pressure from my mom who even offered to help pay for them. I was kinda proud, actually.
    And you’re right. That Target comment? Absolute heresy. :)

    HollY´s last post…Quotes From the Girls

  11. I absolutely love your posts, Rachel. I’ve been on a huge anti-consumerism kick lately. Yesterday we did go into Target and it was overwhelming (my toddler is finally peeing on the potty and I promised him the underpants of his choice). I decided the absolute best thing to do is to try to stay out of stores all together. We also walked down the length of the mall to go to Old Navy (I had promised my other boys jeans). I literally gave myself a little pep talk and held my head somewhat low to avoid the overstimulation and “wanty-ness” that happens inside a mall.

    Mary Beth´s last post…nature table freshen-up

  12. I’ve stopped shopping recreationally (not that I did very much before) and actually prefer thrift store shopping. Maybe it’s the thrill of the hunt or perhap choice overload gets me at the mall or something.

    I like the philosophy of considering if you’d pay full price for the sale item before purchasing it – I’ll remember that! :)

  13. This post really resonated with me, and I think it makes great sense, even when you’re *not* in the middle of a no-spend month. I find that my spending runs in a chain- I might be looking for one thing, say, baby socks…and then see the discount on onesies, and think- sure, I need those! Which then leads to something else I really don’t need, and something else…and then I’m leaving Target with a huge receipt in my purse. *Sigh*.

  14. “With deals like this, it’s like betting paid to shop!”-Kohl’s Cash advert
    No, dude. It isn’t.

    juliet´s last post…ok- maybe just cartoons until september

  15. “If I bought those pants, I could have saved 50 percent. By not buying them, I saved 100 percent.”

    Best quote on the Internet today! And a very welcome reminder that sales still require the spending of money and are not always for stuff I actually need.

    Now this thing about not liking Target, however…;)

  16. “You cannot have a simple life or a simple home unless you can pass up a sale or choose to miss a bargain.”

    This is the quote that really resonated with me. I am striving for simplicity, but I am also learning the art of frugality. The two do not always go in hand, as frugality tends to lead to bargains you can’t pass up. But I can choose to pass up and miss bargains.

    Thank you for your simple, yet profound words.

  17. Um… yes you are allowed to say you don’t like shopping at Target. I despise places like that. My kids even can’t stand stores like Bed, Bath and Beyond. It smells too plasticy and has way too many gizmos and gadgets. Makes us all ill.

    I am decidedly an un-shopper and prefer to go without for a while waiting for a bargain (mostly on-line) for the things we need.

    Our salad spinner has been broken for months and I’ve just been using dish towels to dry greens. But we eat greens every day, sometimes twice a day and Damien finally told me to buy a new spinner. So now I’m waiting for my usual coupon in the mail from B, B & B and I’ll go buy one.

    I pass up bargains ALL the time because there is really not much that we need these days except food, a modest amount of craft supplies (the kids don’t play with toys so much at this age, they create) and new (goodwill, hand-me-down or on-line sale) clothes for the kids as they grow. A bargain is not a bargain if you don’t truly need that thing. It just clutters your life.

    • Renee did you try the Gadget-Free Salad Spinner from Making This Home?

      • Danielle says:

        I tried it, Rachel! I loved it so much that when i organized the kitchen, I got rid of it. I’m 24, and bought that salad spinner with my own money at the ago of 15. That was the only thing I got rid of permanently in my dad’s kitchen (I live with him). When i told him I got rid of it, he was upset (he’s an over-reactor), and keeps threatening to buy a new one. I think he just needs to start reading your blog!

  18. Sandra Gonzales says:

    Aren’t stores so savvy? I’ve been very intentional with my purchasing in the past year but I have to admit that the big red “SALE” sign still makes my heart race.

  19. Sandra Gonzales says:

    I forgot to mention- YOU’RE BABY IS SOOOO CUTE!!!!!

  20. This is so me. I have a lot of free time out in my territory (I cover five counties for a Blood Center as a donor recruiter) and I find myself shopping recreationally to fill time sometimes. I’ve really toned it down and now stop by my favorite thrift store or the library instead when I have down time. It has saved a ton of money. When my husband’s job was recently in jeopardy (still is questionable) we took a hard look at our monthly bank statements and discovered we were spending an average of $500 a month eating out (only three of us in our family and one of us is only FIVE years old), $1000-$1500 a month on Wal-Mart, Target & Groceries and about $500 on “entertainment” (I might have a serious book addiction).

    We are really dialing back the spending and trying to spend more consciously. It makes a difference and the money starts to add back up in your checking account quickly.

    I still have moment’s of “but it’s a good deal” almost every day. Somedays I beat it back and some I don’t but overall, things are getting better.

  21. Great post!

    In an effort to save money, I’ve subscribed to “frugal blogs”. But I found that every time I opened my feed reader I was faced with BUY THIS, BUY THAT, SAVE MONEY HERE, etc. I could spend all week zipping around from store to store to save money. But I came to realize that if I did that I would be spending much more money!

    It dawned on me one day when I was considering going to Old Navy for their $1 (or $2, I can’t remember) tank top sale. I don’t even wear tank tops, but they were such a good bargain I was considering going all the way to Old Navy! DUH!

    So I culled a few of the “frugal blogs” out of my feed reader. I still have a few in my feed reader just to keep on top of the sales and printable coupons that I really do want to get (for groceries, mostly). But I don’t rush around from store to store to gather up bargains.

  22. Karen (Scotland) says:

    Mr wee Granny (81 years old and grew up during/just after the second world war) sums this up by saying “It’s only a bargain if you need it”.

    I think I’m subconsciouslessly (is that even a word!) gearing up to moving house in the next year or so as I feel like I’m clearing all the dross out of our home – the toiletries, the clothing, the excess toys, the wedding plates we have never used. Becasue of this mentality at the moment, I just refuse to buy more to bring into our home unless I really, really need it.
    I’ve done without a clock in the bedroom all summer – if it’s dark, I go back to sleep, if I hear birds, it’s roughly 3am, if it’s light outside, it’s probably after 4am, if Nina is awake, it’s maybe 5am and if I hear the kids, it’s (hopefully) 6am.
    I’ll buy one in the winter but at least I’ve held on to that money over the summer. :-)
    Karen
    PS Going to look up Target on the web as I haven’t a clue what kind of shop it is!

  23. Great article! You are so right about the necessity of passing up a bargain in order to have a simple home.

  24. I guess this is another advantage of living in a small town – there is virtually no shopping to be had (except Walmart which I totally avoid). We have to create lists of real needs and wait until the next trip to the nearest city to hunt down what we need-or shop online. I have to say, though, that I wish I ended up in the city when Old Navy had a $1 tank top sale!!! (as per Tammy’s comment).

    My son recently learned about being more aware of marketing strategies. He found a movie he wanted to buy with his money and the price was listed at 2/$20 but he only wanted one movie. He asked me if there was a movie I wanted to buy to go in with him. Ummmm, no! So he decided he really wanted this movie even at full price but when he went to pay for it learned that it was only $10! Their pricing strategy pushed people to buy two movies when they didn’t have to. Anyways, great learning experience for my son.

  25. Monday..when my partner told me that Target had shoes on clearance for 80% off, I snuck out of work early. Ha. I could not resist. I did go a little overboard, but we really did need shoes. Really though, who could resist a cute little pair of girls shoes that were $2.50?!?! I bought my daughter, um, maybe 8 pairs. We spent a total of $60, which was a lot. However, I think THAT kind of sale is well worth it. It was stuff we needed, or would soon need. And we saved a ton!

    • 8 pairs in different sizes to grow into, right?

      I need to get my little girl some new shoes too.

  26. ah yes. right on. (and he is darling! great picture!) I’ve learned in the past two years to buy only on sale and to stockpile. What a rude awakening to find that I’m moving in a year and here’s these stock piles that are going to be cluttering closets when we show the house. yup, I’m afraid I have that much shampoo.

  27. I passed the test last year… I really did, I spent so little on clothing that now I’m finding out I need a lot of things! New sandals, basic tops. Right now I’m browsing through sales, I think I’ve earned the right to shop a bit. But yeah, you’ve become really frugal when you manage to stay rational while looking at 70% price tags!

  28. We are an Old Navy/Gap/Banana Republic/Target family. Without them we would be naked. I had to learn to think about what we need vs. what is on sale. I also ask myself “Do you love it?” if the answer is no, put it down. I have also learned that there is ALWAYS another Old Navy sale. Always.

    Tracey´s last post…Make Maternity Pants from Pants

  29. I love the target comment. I’m with you – not throwing anything here – and don’t get me started on Costco. Loved this post!

    Jennifer´s last post…Heaven

  30. I avoid malls if at all possible, for the exact reason that Rachel stated… all of a sudden I find all these things that I didn’t know I needed. Then, since I don’t have the money because I have other financial goals that don’t involve a new wardrobe, furniture, etc. I leave the mall depressed.

    Why?

    I really don’t like to shop, and I don’t like to spend money, and I’m happy where I am in life… so why does it make me depressed to go to the mall?

    The pressure, the advertising, and all of the “Jones” that are walking around who I should probably be keeping up with.

    silly.

  31. Sigh. I’ve been thinking about this even before this post. Mainly about thrift stores and yard sales. We don’t have a Target close by and Walmart is well, Walmart. But give me a good sale at a thrift store and… I have tons of clothes for my 2 year old. I buy them all used and cheap(50 cents each normally, $1 if it is super cute) but still, I have a lot. And not a lot of space. I think that I need to make an inventory of what I already have bought ahead for her (she grows through sizes like crazy, we’re rather tall folk) and then shop yard sales with a list. It will make much more sense that way.

    The other issue is cleaning supplies. With those scattered in 2 bathrooms, under the kitchen sink, in the laundry room… who knew what we had or where? Now, with an impending home inspection for our foster/adoption application process, I’m having to centralize all chemicals and medicines and what do you know – I have more than I thought! It’s turning into a rather good thing being forced to do this. And while I would say that forced organization is not a good enough motive for adoption, it is a nice bonus.

  32. Good point! As I’m getting ready for my first – and who doesn’t want their child to have the world! – I keep reminding myself that the fewer adorable dresses I buy her, the more we can afford to do things together as a family.

    • Also remember that the fewer baby outfits you have, the more special they’ll become. When they are worn more often, you’ll have more memories of them later.

  33. I keep a list of kinda want/kinda needs in my head, and if I happen to see it on a screaming deal and we’ve got a bit extra I’ll get it.

    For example, I haven’t owned a black sweater in a few years, and I now live in the Pac NW where it is chilly 9 months of the years. I only own 3 or 4 sweaters as is, in gray, navy and brown. Owning one more doesn’t seem extravagant, but I didn’t want to get a cheap acrylic one that would pill up after one season.

    Then while looking in Banana Republic for a dress for a very fancy wedding (couldn’t get around having to buy a cockatil dress for that one), I saw a nice black sweater on clearance for $13, and got it. Normally its over $70, it is good quality that will last years with the right care, and it was a missing piece of my wardrobe.

    Knowing what I have in my closet and what essential pieces are missing helps me make those decisions and keep an eye out.

    Kait Palmer´s last post…What the Kale

    • Kait I’m pretty sure I got the pink one like your black one a couple of months ago. I feel the same way about acrylic sweaters: they don’t last, and they never feel as good, no matter how cute they are. But I have plenty of sweaters, so no more for me!

  34. Patricia says:

    Great post. I went shopping with my elderly parents today. My Dad was very surprised that I didn’t buy anything. After I dropped them off, I stopped by Goodwill. I bought a flannel shirt for hubby (in our favorite school colors) and a jacket for Mom that I think I will give her for a Christmas present. Retail is too expensive.

  35. I don’t go to malls but I have this problem on eBay. OMG that’s sooo cheap I should just get it, it’ll never be that cheap again. To make it worse I’ve got the application on my phone. You’ve inspired me Rachael, I’m deleting the application. Hold on…..OK done. When I’m freaking out latter from ebay withdrawal I’m blaming you

    Benjamin Bankruptcy´s last post…Budgeting apparently I need to do it-

  36. Love this post! The “only buy it on sale if you would be willing to pay full price for it” doesn’t work for as I don’t like paying full price for anything EVER. However, I do think about whether or not I truly need something before I buy it. I’ve gotten so much better at this everywhere, except Target that is.

  37. In general, I’m not much of a shopper, but I have a weakness for books- especially at used book stores. I’ve found one thing that helps me is having a wish-list of books that I would like to own (generally either books I love or books I can’t get at the library). I find having a list lets me pass by books that look “interesting” but aren’t on the list because I know there are other books that have a higher priority. Occasionally I pick up a book that is on clearance for $1 or $2, but I rarely buy a book that is more than $3 unless it is on my list.

  38. Rachel,

    I need these reminders to STOP BUYING! I was talking with a co-worker yesterday and she was so excited by the fact she had cleaned out her kids’ bedrooms and play room and got rid of loads of stuff. It took her a lot of time to clear out the rooms and she feels so refreshed now that it’s gone. Why is it we always need more and more?

    You’re so right about shopping and sales. They suck you in! I don’t feel good when I go into a store for one specific thing and walk out with ten things because they were a good deal. In the end, did I really get a deal?

    Thanks for the link to the way you store baby clothes. We’re expecting our first baby (a girl) in less than a month. We already have a TON of clothes for her – many generous family and friends, but I agree with you on there not being much need for so many clothes when they’re so small and we do laundry anyway. Can’t wait to go and read your tips. Thanks!

    Nicole´s last post…its coming!

  39. He could not be any cuter, seriously! I am the same way, I haven’t bought much for my second child, but most likely because he’s a boy. I still have problems refraining from buying or making new clothes for my girl though!

    Elizabeth´s last post…Random Hump Day Ramblings

  40. Rachel,

    I am doing no spend month so no malls, bookstores for me as I know some are harder for me to resist, such as books.

    I personally think kids grow out of the clothes so quickly, so I buy some gently used and some new for wearing outside. I am not a big shopper, books are different story all together.

    I am glad you are sticking to your gut feeling, I can see you have moved beyond no spend month now.

  41. Danielle says:

    I work at a discount retailer, and we are given first pick of the clearance merchandise… I just bought an ellie tahari dress that was $300 for $19. Its hard to resist something beautiful at more than 90% off. When I make purchases from work, I let all my decisions pass through an obstacle course of requirements.
    1) will i be able to wear this item in my future profesion? (teacher)
    2) will the upkeep of this garment be more expensive than the inital cost? (i only buy things i am capable of laundering myself)
    3) am i paying less than my company paid to buy this item? (highway robbery prices!)
    4) Do i still want it after waiting a week and trying it on?
    5) Does it flatter and fit my figure perfectly?
    6) is it comfortable enough that I will truly want to wear it?
    7) Do I really want to hand my paycheck back to my employer to own this garment?
    After all this criteria, I buy very little, considering I am CONSTANTLY surrounded by the sales, yet what I do buy I don’t truly need. I have a closet full of beautiful clothes. I feel like now is the time to build my truly cheap wardrobe for my teaching future, because I will certainly not have the time or money to buy one then.

    • I like Elie Tahari too. Buying clothes isn’t always about what you need. It sounds like you’ve got a sure plan to make good choices!

  42. I love what you say about saving 100% versus saving 50%, it doesn’t get much truer than that! Sometimes I’m more bothered by the fact that I know I’m missing a sale (for example, if I just can’t make it to the store before the sale ends), which is odd considering there’s been so many times that I actually am at the store and can’t find just what I want for the right price. Thus, chances are pretty good that if I’m missing a sale, I’m really not missing anything at all.

    Alison´s last post…On Being Prepared

  43. I am proud to say I almost always follow the “don’t buy a sale item unless you would buy it if it were not on sale” rule. But I am not immune to impulse buys, either. What has saved me with cute kid clothes is buying ahead. When I see all the lovely clothes at the start of the season, I wait. When they all go on clearance, I buy the next year size. I have been super lucky that my guy has grown very steadily and everything has fit!

    Robin´s last post…Hello Again

  44. This is a post I need to read and reread. I am very disciplined when shopping sometimes, other times, not so much. I live overseas, so I probably save a lot because there is no Walmart, Target etc… :( But I also hate that there aren’t any thrift stores-that’s where I could become really dangerous. I have two boys and I’m pregnant with another boy, so I am trying to stay clear of some of my fav stores that have super cute boy clothes, the only problem is that they don’t always last. I’ve decided to buy at the better stores for better, longer-lasting clothes (on sale, of course!) so that they will last through at least two of the boys. My boys are rough on their clothes, so this makes sense. I recently bought some school clothes for my oldest-he starts school in Sep! For such a big milestone, I really think I did ok, not over-buying, but it was hard! I am really trying to think quality or quantity, so far, so good. And I try to wait for the clearance items and then buy the next size up. This has saved me money in the long-run. I just need to limit the amount that I buy-sometimes easier said than done. Thanks for the great reminder!

  45. Yes, it is hard for me to resist a sale…but only if it is something I will use. This month it hasn’t been a problem, I avoid stores. It actually feels freeing….:)

    Sharon´s last post…Diary of a Spend Less than I usually Do Month- Day 14

  46. For many years my motto has been…

    “WHEN IN DOUBT DO WITHOUT”

    It has proved to be a wonderful advice.

    :} Becka

  47. I love this! I’ve been thinking about doing this, but right after the Nordstrom Anniversary sale! I think it’s funny that your icon kind of makes me want a cute, yellow handbag.

  48. Jessica says:

    I’ll admit that I scoffed a little when I read that you don’t like Target. Who doesn’t like Target?? But then I realized, No, this is good. This is exactly why I like her. I can learn something.

  49. OK, Rachel…you need to post those 8 items…..I’m totally intrigued…

  50. I used to feel that way about buying a bargain I saw on sale but I’m largely reformed now. I realized after cleaning out the basement in my old house that I felt like I had more stuff not less because I could find what I needed more quickly. I also got rid or repurposed my worn out stuff so I no longer felt that I didn’t have nice things like kitchen towels. I just had too many worn out kitchen towels to notice the “nice” ones I only wanted out when company came over. Now I can find and use the nice ones every day.

    Condo Blues´s last post…Help Condo Blues Win Her Dream Job – Salada Tea Spokesperson!

  51. Shannon says:

    I won’t pay full price for anything except some very specific grocery items. So full price is not a deciding factor for me:D I have price marks instead, if an item we need or want goes under a price point I will consider it. If I didn’t know I wanted it, then I wait a few days and see if I still want it, if it is gone then I didn’t want as bad as I thought.

  52. I used to LIVE for bargains, or so I thought but now a days I just stay as far away from the stores as possible until I am urgently needing something. I guess I figure if I am not terribly suffering I must not really NEED anything at the moment, no matter how cheap it is.

  53. “If I bought those pants, I could have saved 50 percent. By not buying them, I saved 100 percent.”

    My grandpa says something like this (and he also says “If you don’t buy it… it’s FREE” but that one isn’t as helpful) and I used to laugh it off but now that I’m older and have kids and much less money in my budget, I see the wisdom of it. It’s so hard to resist when I see a good sale on kids clothes, but reminding myself of it gives me the few moments I need to remember that my daughter has plenty of clothes she doesn’t wear and my son has shorts in his dresser with tags still on them. Thanks for the reminder!

    One Mom (Kristina)´s last post…Bad Storms

  54. This is really good advice. I do agree with the theory of living a simple life, it is hard to accomplish I must say.
    Thanks for sharing.

  55. Mmmm… There is almost nothing that I am willing to pay full price for so that rule wouldn’t work for me.

  56. I admit for me it is not the mall it is thrift shops, I have to have a mission and blinders on when I go into one of those. Preferably I have to have cash in hand. Having said that I have furnished 90% of our home and 75% of our wardrobes from thrift stores.
    Lisa @Granola Catholic´s last post…Green Your Halloween–Repurposing Costumes