Frugal Weekend Wrap Up
Monday, June 09, 2008
Back to the city after a weekend in the brilliant sun at Channel Islands' Hollywood Beach. What a gorgeous area! Only an hour from L.A. - I wonder where everyone IS, as it is quite quiet. Gas prices, not doubt. (It takes hundreds of dollars to fill up the tank of a stinkpot motorboat just to go out). We have a sailboat!
More finds at the Yacht Club rummage sale - a Thai dress with great embroidery - a nice sailing t-shirt, a blue Green Peace sweatshirt, some cute shoes - a straw bag and a little travel bag - some paperbacks and some costume jewelry! All for $7!! Mark also picked up a lovely set of a duvet and matching pillows & pillow shams ($15) - he said it was for the boat, but it really is too nice, so we are going to use it at HOME.
TIP FOR ROCK-BOTTOM BARGAINS AT YARD/RUMMAGE SALES: The advice is usually to come EARLY for the best stuff. That may be true for collectibles and minor antiques that antique pickers and collectors are out for - but the REAL bargains are at the END of the sale, when they are almost packing up and just want to get RID of everything! It's either sell as much as they can to you, or drag it around to a thrift shop, and they would rather get rid of it on site. I even have been GIVEN an oak cabinet at the end of a yard sale, when the woman just wanted it to GO AWAY.
With the exception of the duvet (which they did originally want $50 for, I got everything at $.50 apiece. And they threw the paperbacks in. Good deal!
To me thrift is about increased value. As prices rise, due partially to inflation, it means that our money just isn't worth as much, and so we have to pay more of it to get the same stuff! I calculated that NEW what I got for $7 would be at least $200 - can you believe it? And, frankly, I get as much VALUE out of it all as I would if I had spent top dollar. That means my dollars go further, and I have some to spend elsewhere, as at the gas pump, where I don't have much choice.
The main barriers are psychological ones - thinking that you are "less-than" for wearing used clothes - and using used items. It's foolish, especially in the current economic climate! If you want to be discrete, just don't tell anyone where it all came from. I used to just say "Oh, I got it in my wanderings." Or nowadays you can casually say, "Oh, it's VINTAGE." But the truth of the matter is that you will be better dressed and generally have more of the things you want to make your life comfortable and enjoyable without going broke or further into debt.
Actually, I pride myself on how clever I am to get things so inexpensively - and actually have fun calculating the difference between retail prices and what I paid. It's sort of like winning at Vegas. Ka-chink!
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Savings by the Sea
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