I often feel that as a personal finance blogger, I should be more frugal in my purchasing. Although I don’t throw money away exactly, I’m also not a follower of some of the most basic “being frugal” advice that there is. This is particularly true of clothes.
I usually pay full price for my clothes from regular high street shops.
A real frugal person would buy there clothes second-hand, or at massive discount in the sales. Whilst I don’t spend much money compared to many of my peers, compared to the rest of the personal finance crowd, I’m afraid I’d be considered a spend thrift. Here are my top 5 excuses.
excuse 1: a deprived childhood
When I was a kid, up until about the age of 16, apart from my (revolting brown, beige and gold) school uniform nearly all the clothes I had were hand me downs. When it was dress down day at school I was always very careful to be wearing the nicest of the clothes that I had.
Although I don’t resent this, I did always want new *shop-bought* clothes. I still do. I know that this isn’t really a deprived childhood, but this is one of my biggest excuses for not buying from second-hand clothes shops. I feel that I deserve better.
excuse 2: I’m a funny shape
People that have met me will confirm that I am not an average shape person. I’m 5 foot nothing, and a UK size 14 (US size 10?). This means that I am too short for regular women’s clothes. In fact, I’m actually too short for regular short people’s clothes (more commonly known as the petite section).
I am the perfect height for age 12 children’s clothes. Sadly (since kid’s clothes are cheaper) I’m far from the perfect build for that. In practice this means that it’s quite hard for me to find clothes that fit reasonably well – I’m usually in petite clothes that I’ve hemmed myself for work. When it’s hard to find clothes that fit, you are basically stuck buying them even if they aren’t that frugal.
excuse 3: I’m picky
I don’t wear brown. (See above mention of school uniform for reasons why.) I also don’t wear double breasted coats, or pencil skirts, or shirts. Basically, I’m a fussy dresser and I’m not willing to think too far outside the box. I know what suits me and I stick to it. This does mean that I don’t actually buy that many clothes, but on the other hand, it’s another reason why I end up paying full price for everything. When you’re picky, there’s less choice.
excuse 4: I don’t like busy shops
A great time to get the same clothing for less, is in the sales. Unfortunately, I hate shopping in the sales. I hate it being busy, everything takes twice as long, and the queues for the changing rooms are enormous. It gives me so little pleasure, that I’ve almost stopped going to the sales completely. When I do go, it’s generally at the tail end. It’s quieter, but not much is left.
excuse 5: I can afford to
I don’t need to pay tiny amounts for clothes. I have no kids and a reasonably well paying job. Unlike when I was a student – and it didn’t matter – I can actually afford to pay full price for clothes, as long as I don’t buy too much. They say that necessity is the mother of invention, and with no necessity, and not a great deal of innate fashion sense, my frugal invention skills are under developed.
What do you think of my excuses? Should I try harder? Do you have any (justified or otherwise) excuses yourself for your own non-frugality? Let me know in the comments.
Image by mell242