I spent yesterday unpacking my suitcases and a whole lot of boxes, and have now almost finished unpacking and sorting out my new bedroom. As satisfying as it was to get everything neatly sorted out, it was also quite confronting to see exactly how much stuff I own. I have done more shopping the past three months than I usually do in a year, and while I am really happy with the purchases I have made, I think it is about time I stopped shopping, and I want to try and save some money. I have reached a point where I feel like my wardrobe is just about right, and apart from a few key items I have nothing else that I really need. After some consideration, I have decided that I will make a dramatic reduction to my shopping, and I have decided that I will set myself a 4 month shopping ban. The reason I have decided on a 4 month ban, rather than the more common 6-month time frame, is that I am going to France and London in June for just under 3 weeks, and I expect I will be doing a reasonable amount of shopping while I am over there.
I know I won’t be able to go 4 months without purchasing a single item of clothing, accessories, makeup etc, so I have come up with a few rules to follow which I think should allow me to get through these 4 months without much trouble.
1. I can buy basic essentials. Things like tights, socks, and basic, practical underwear are okay, but only if I need them.
2. If something breaks or wears out, I can replace it, but only if I don’t have something similar. I don’t see this happening very often, but if something I wear regularly does become unwearable and I don’t already own a suitable alternative, I am allowed to replace it.
3. When it comes to makeup, I can only replace things I use on a daily basis. I own a rather small amount of makeup as it is, and I am interested in building a better collection, but I think I will wait until I am in London to do that. Over the next 4 months, the only makeup I buy will be replacements for things that I use on a daily basis. I know my primer will run out soon, and I can see myself needing to replace some of the lipsticks that I wear on a near-daily basis, but apart from that I shouldn’t be buying too much makeup.
4. I can buy myself one black coat and one pair of black boots when winter gets here. At the moment I only own one winter coat, as my old black one became too small, and my current black ankle boots have gotten very sad looking, so they will need replacing. I will make sure that both of these items are high quality pieces that will last me for years, and I will take the time to find something perfect, not settling for anything that doesn’t tick all the boxes.
5. No magazines except Frankie, and minimal books. I have limited time to read during the semester due to my high study load, and I am now living very near to my favourite library, so hopefully I can make it through these 6 months without buying any books, but I refuse to set myself a complete book ban.
Well, that is it. From today onward, I will be dramatically cutting down my shopping. I am feeling really good about this ban, and I do think that I will be able to maintain it. I find I get enough retail therapy from just doing the grocery shopping, and I do believe I have reached a point where there is almost nothing that I actually need. I will keep you updated about how I am going on a monthly basis, and after 4 months I will most likely write a post about my experience.
Have you ever placed yourself on a shopping ban? If you did, what did you find the hardest to avoid? Are there any pitfalls I need to watch out for?