Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Confessions of a Bargain Lover

When I started this blog, I had no idea it would morph into what it is today. At that time the Roots journey was just a few wild dreams mixed with a crazy guess or two. Since then, it's become an outlet for me to write about the things I'm passionate about, and opened the door to some great relationships. The exciting part is, when it comes to what it looks like next year, just my imagination (...and time) is the limit. That's why, starting today, I'm blogging about another part of my "roots."

My mother has always been a bargain shopper. As I grew up, she was lovingly known as the "return queen" for making end of the season clothing hauls, letting us kids pick out a few of our favorites that fit, and returning the rest. I'm sure the shopping at home gig was much easier than dragging 3 small children to the store. Plus, as a kid I loved the surprise of what she'd bring home. When I did go to the store with her, I quickly learned to make a beeline for the clearance rack. Before we ever covered it in school, I learned to calculate 10, 20, and 50% off!

However, my love for a good deal goes even deeper than that. At Christmas, my Grandma would show up with neatly wrapped presents overflowing from the car. The treasures of her outlet mall adventures would fill the living room as we excitedly opened our presents on Christmas morning. Even when it wasn't Christmas, each time my grandparents visited, there would be a new book, doll clothes, or a truck she'd "just picked up for a quarter." When my brother and I would go stay with Opa and Grandma, a morning of garage sales was always on the agenda. Someone would give us a buck or two, and we'd spend hours strategizing the best way to stretch our little budget. Our parents were never as thrilled with the bang for our buck we were so proud of when it was time to pack and head back to Iowa.

They say the apple doesn't fall far from the tree, and I suppose in my case this is true. You see, I'm a bargain lover too. After a crummy day on campus, I love to take some me time and head to the Goodwill a couple blocks from my house. I feel so much better after finding a cute shirt with the tags still on it, even if I did fail my pop quiz or struggled to stay awake during lecture. Until this past weekend, Ames was the best Goodwill I'd ever been to. I swear mothers send their kids to college with brand new dress pants, sweaters, you name it! Kids' styles change, mom doesn't get what's cool anymore, or they won't need dress up clothes (which is the biggest lie ever)... I don't know, but somehow it all ends up two blocks from my house, brand-spankin-new just the way mom dropped it off, calling my name. 

I didn't know Goodwill could get any better than that, but this week it did! In case you haven't read on the Roots Facebook page, I'm interning at Beck's Hybrids in Atlanta, Indiana. It's just north of Indianapolis, and I'm staying in a beautiful old farmhouse with four other girls. This past weekend, in celebration of payday, three of us decided to venture to the big city to see what the 50% off Saturday at Goodwill was all about. Boy, did we hit the jackpot! I got 15 items for a grand total of ....drumroll...please... $35.19! Sunday afternoon was spent doing laundry to get our purchases washed up just in time for the work week. 

Yesterday, it took forever to pick out what to wear, but I finally settled on this:

Don't mind the already worn look as this blog post was a post-dressed-daydream! And I promise I'll learn to take better outfit pictures! :)

Following in the steps of my mother and grandmother, I paid regular price for nothing. Just for fun, I decided to break down the cost of a few of my favorite outfits just to see how thrifty I really am. Here's yesterday's breakdown:

  • Dark Red American Eagle Skinny Jeans: $3.15 - These were one of my weekend Goodwill finds. They fit well and are a bold color that I can wear with my large cardigan collection (...more on that later)
  • White Target T-shirt (new): $8.00 - Just ask my mom, I love a fresh, bright white t-shirt! Come to think of it, I wear this with cardigans a lot too!
  • Black and Gray Target 3/4 Sleeve Cardigan: $3.48 - This was one of my Ames Goodwill finds that still had the store tag on it! It's super soft and perfect for the chilly air conditioned office.
  • Black Target Flats (new): $17ish - I got these shoes at Target last summer when I was working at the Iowa State Fair and needed a pair of cute flats that had some cushion. Their so comfortable I went back and got a brown pair too! They've gotten plenty of love!
  • Black Leather Aeropostale Belt (new): <$5.00 - I remember this one of my first clothing purchases for myself way back in middle school when it was sooo cool to buy my own clothes. Ha! See, I was in to bargains even then!
  • Silver Vanity Cross Necklace (new): $1.98 - These days I get all my cheap, faddy jewelry at Vanity after I wait for it to get to their lowest clearance price, $1.98. I don't feel as bad when I don't wear it much, it breaks, or it disappears after lending it to a friend if I only paid a couple bucks.
Grand Total: $38.91

That's right! Head to toe, my outfit cost less than $40! The best part is, this $38.91 was used to create job opportunities for individuals with disabilities or facing other barriers for employment. Stay tuned for the breakdown of more of my favorite outfits and tips for making the most of your thrifting trip. Thanks for reading!

No comments:

Post a Comment