My partner and I have recently put our thrifty heads together in a tightening of the household budget as evidenced in our recent gift giving, cooking and in enjoyment time. Since my thesis (and tutoring for the undergrad course) is taking up a large portion of my crafting time, this post is largely about gifting, sharing and clothing!
Yesterday we spent a few hours playing in the charity shops in the capital looking for new work clothes. Partner made out like a bandit with two gorgeous pairs of pinstripe trousers and two dress shirts from the same original store- one with a pair of cufflinks. Working as a team it was amazing how quickly we could swoop in, identify the important racks and grab stuff to try on. Not that we were rushing in any way- two pairs of eyes just kept us more focused on the quality goods.
As partner was paying for something at the till, I looked up to see this lovely lady surveying the shoppers below. Tucked behind an earring rack, I asked the shop worker if I could photograph her saying that I’d move the earrings back in place. He said yes, but seemed to wonder why I’d want a photo!
There were many hidden joys in the 8 or so shops we hit, including this crocheted dress I had seen in the store window a few months ago. Sadly, no one seems to want it. Sure, it’s ugly, but someone made it!
In addition to the charity shops where I had no luck yesterday, we’ve received some clothes from freecycle recently and have given away two bags of clothes. My partner got a brand new suit- trousers and jacket- perfect for interviews, etc. Unfortunately, it is dry clean only- so we shipped it off to the supermarket along with the skirt pictured below, which I also got from freecycle. While £4 for dry cleaning is obviously cheaper than purchasing a new suit, we worry about the chemicals used. I plan on airing my skirt out very well before I wear it…and on washing it by hand in the sink next time!
The grey cardigan also came from freecycle and it was covered in sequins. Luckily they weren’t sewn on very securely so I snipped them off with minimal effort. The cardigan is cropped and is a very soft blend of acrylic, nylon, angora and lambswool. The two pairs of trousers are charity shop finds- the brown pair is linen and will be for dressier occasions, while the tan pair are a linen/cotton blend and are for regular wear. The grey-black jacket is a hand-me-down from a friend. She was cleaning out her closets and never wore it- after wearing it on two of the 5 days I’ve owned it, I know I’ll be wearing it often. I really like the artist-smock type cut to it and the large pockets. It may acquire a small stencil but I cannot decide which shape to use. The t-shirts were also hand-me-downs from two friends.
Lastly, in the clothes category, I dyed three shirts last month. Using a rich purple colour, I transformed one shirt that is a peasant style in a natural colour- but getting so see-through that the colour just looked dingy instead of “natural” white. I wear that one as-is now. I also dyed two other short sleeve blouses that are quite boxy and awaiting a bit of tailoring.
For partner’s 26th birthday this week, I made another chocolate cake upon request, and gifted a green Friends mug I found months ago. We had two in the house already- partner lived in Staffordshire where they are made and loves the show Friends. We also used the ipoints I had collected to order a (birthday gift) book.