Frugal February

Frugal February Clothing Rack

I’m usually one of those people who makes plans, but the other day I made a spontaneous decision and I feel like I need to tell you about it because if I don’t then no one will know and I’ll just back out of it and it will never happen. After reading a post from Fern at The Fern Life’s decision to cut back on her Kmart spending, I’ve decided that I’m going to join her in taking on the Frugal February challenge. I’ve decided that I’m not going to spend any money this month that doesn’t need to be spent.

The thing is, my spending has gotten a little bit out of control lately. I looked at my bank statement the other day and realised I’ve been spending little bits here and there … and they really add up! I’ve been frittering money away and after sitting down with my calculator and bank statement, quite frankly I’m embarrassed. I just worked out that in the last six weeks I’ve spent almost $700 on things I don’t really need. How did this happen? I’m supposed to be on a tight budget and meant to be saving money. At this rate I’m never going to be able to afford a deposit for a house and I’ll be stuck in my dreary flat FOREVER. Oh hell no, this is ridiculous. I don’t even know where I got a spare $700 from for goodness sake.

Frugal February Counting my pennies

This is the month I’m wiping the slate clean and getting serious about saving money. And to do that, I need to be a bit more frugal with my spending.

This month, there will be no visits to Kmart to get cute homewares. No trips down to the village to grab coffee. No shopping online in the middle of the night to buy yet another top that looks the same as three I already own (I’m looking at you, ASOS). No visits to the nail salon. No ordering pizza because I can’t be bothered cooking…

Instead, I’m going to be doing a wardrobe clearout and cooking at home. I’m going to make my own coffee. I’m going to be going through all the things that I’ve been wanting to clear out around my house for ages and either selling them, binning them or donating them to charity. I’m pretty sure that’s going to make it really apparent that I have been buying a lot of things that I really don’t need (actually, that’s already obvious!).

This no spending thing isn’t going to be forever, just for a month. I want to make sure I’m really thinking about where my money goes and living within my budget. Especially if it turns out I’ve got an extra $700 a month that I could be spending on rad clothes or saving for my dream house! The bonus of this for you is that I’ll be able to share any tips I pick up along the way and I’ll be thinking more about how to have a fabulous wardrobe while being on a budget, is that something you would want to know about?

If anyone wants to join me, let me know!
I can tell I’m going to need all the support I can get.

Missguided Plus Size

19 Comments

  1. Michelle
    February 13, 2017 / 8:33 pm

    You’ve got this! I’ve really cut down over the last few months. It’s incredible, I CAN love without most of the stuff I would usually buy. Next, wardrobe clearout!

    • Michelle
      February 13, 2017 / 8:33 pm

      *live

    • February 14, 2017 / 8:54 am

      It’s amazing what I was spending money on that I totally didn’t need! So far I’m doing well… Good luck with your wardrobe clearout!

  2. February 11, 2017 / 5:46 pm

    Ha! Great post. Ironically in mid-January I decided we’d go on a financial detox for February as December and January were eye-wateringly expensive, what with Christmas, summer holidays and 3 birthdays in the family! We also have a goal of a getaway to Fiji during June for our 5th wedding anniversary and to do that, some serious saving is absolutely in order. Not to mention that seemingly out of reach goal of owning our own property (in Auckland nonetheless – yikes!).

    Turns out my husband got injured at the end of January, meaning our income has had a bit of a trim down for a few weeks while he recovers at home. Not an ideal situation but at least with the no non-essential spending mindset, we have been ok.

    I too have been seduced by Kmart many times as well, but I decided awhile ago that I prefer a more eclectic and unique home rather than have it filled with the same old stuff that a lot of other Kmart addicts have. I have nothing against Kmart but lets face it, having well-considered items of better quality that last for years is probably more cost effective and feels a lot more special in the long run.

    I am hoping another few months of concentrating on just the essentials is going to put us in a really positive place. Good luck to everyone on their own frugal February’s!

    • February 13, 2017 / 8:55 am

      Sounds like you’ve got lots to save for! Saving for a home in Auckland is so hard

  3. February 2, 2017 / 4:25 pm

    I freaked out at the start of the year because December was such an expensive month. I really needed to dial it back. I lived really frugally in January and managed to save a third of my income! As you know, I love to eat out, but I’ve been making better decisions on eating out and taking advantage of specials, vouchers etc when I do. I always have food at home, so it’s been a matter of telling myself, I can wait until I get home instead of dining out. It’s a habit that is good to get into.

    • February 2, 2017 / 5:27 pm

      Eating out can get pricey, right? That’s where a lot of my money went in January – feeding three people (including a growing teenager) is hard on the wallet. Taking advantage of specials is a good idea, I’ll have to keep an eye out (from March haha)

  4. Sandra Troy
    February 2, 2017 / 9:35 am

    Morning Megan. I fully applaud your commitment. Maybe you should go back and read your blog of Dec 17th 2015. Buying at Kmart is not where its at! Definitely not supporting NZ Made, sustainable, ethical. Its cheap for a reason, however tempting. Because you have such a huge following (much admired ) You could definately spread the message of conscious buying. My daughter works at a Salvation Army store in our capital city and talks about the volume of discarded cheap clothing that arrives hourly at the shop. 90% of it does not go on the rack but is bundled to be sent offshore. The 3rd world countries are being overwhelmed with our discards (plenty about this on google) Its piling up and they don’t have the resources to cope. Woman complain about the cost of clothes from the boutiques. But when you spend $300 plus on a beautiful garment you don’t do it on a whim. That garment carefully chosen will last for 3-4+ seasons and always look & make you feel fantastic……..Naturally being a NZ plus size designer I will always consciously support NZ made first and foremost in everything I buy…even my wine!

    • February 2, 2017 / 10:30 am

      Thanks Sandra. Not everyone can afford to buy NZ Made, sustainable, ethical clothing which is why I talk about options for different budgets on my blog. Interesting to hear that the Salvation Army is sending 90% of the clothing donated overseas, because I’m forever hearing from other charities that support women in New Zealand that they don’t have enough clothes and need more – I’ll definitely encourage people to donate clothing there rather than Salvation Army.

  5. February 2, 2017 / 9:08 am

    I’m in! I plan to hire a skip for all the big rubbish (Reno stuff) and then finally get some stuff on trademe or neighborly. As for my wardrobe… it is so overdue. Reckon I’ll find lots of things I forgot I had for some almost-new-almost-retail-therapy vibes. We’ve had such an expensive summer. Time to tighten the purse strings!

    • February 2, 2017 / 10:38 am

      WOOHOO! Shopping in your own closet is great, especially new stuff you’ve never worn. I’m getting my roof redone so might have to hire a skip for that too – thanks for the reminder!

  6. February 2, 2017 / 5:01 am

    I’m the same though there’s things I’m thinking about buying (shorts), I’m also wanting to save as much as possible for my 2nd ever trip to North America (parts of USA & Canada).

    I know I have a $50 voucher with Max so will use that at their Outlet Shop, but decided last month that I just need to clear out (sell, dump) things that don’t fit or i don’t like, selling has earnt me some money back, but I still have things & still hoping to sell them.

    i know how to control my spending is learning to how to shop my wardrobe & to get on aim to what in my wardrobe i actually want in it, that is totally where I need the most help

    • February 2, 2017 / 10:33 am

      I think you’ll find heaps of cool stuff in North America as well! Maybe save up to spend there, and figure out exactly what you’re looking to add to your wardrobe?

  7. February 1, 2017 / 8:52 pm

    I’m trying to do this – except mine is from now until May. We just booked flights to Vietnam for a few weeks so I need to save save save! While also trying to pay off debt. I’ve stopped buying lunch every day at work and am making a really really really amazing salad every day instead. We’ve also been trying to cook cheaper meals at home – instead of buying lots of food to cook, then having takeaways every night instead and throwing out the food we bought to eat.

    • February 1, 2017 / 10:10 pm

      Vietnam, how exciting! Sounds like you’ve made some good changes to help save some money, I totally hear you on the food front, it’s so easy to get takeout but so wasteful if you’re buying groceries as well!

  8. February 1, 2017 / 7:45 pm

    I love this idea and I really need to rein my spending in. We’re currently trying to save for a new shower, a new car and a new kitchen! But unfortunately I’m needing to fly to Australia to see my sister who’s not very well, so there goes a lot of our savings 🙁 Just have to keep on saving and not spending money on silly things when I’m back!

    • February 1, 2017 / 8:28 pm

      Sorry to hear your sister isn’t very well, I hope she’s better soon. I’m sure she’ll be glad that you’re going over to see her – and you can keep saving when you’re back! x

  9. February 1, 2017 / 6:05 pm

    This is fantastic, I’m so excited that my blog post inspired you! I found it so confronting when I added up how much money I’d been spending just cos. Hopefully we’ll both be rich by the time March rolls around…

    • February 1, 2017 / 6:10 pm

      SO confronting. I’m keeping my fingers crossed for riches in March! Thanks so much for the inspo Fern 🙂

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