operation spending freeze.

Back in early January, I shared the vision {cv} and I crafted for this year. As I coined it, 2012 is the year of health + home. In order to make our dream home a reality, it was time for me to make some big changes in my shopping habits. For the first month ever, I spent not a single cent on clothing. I stepped in my favorite store only once--to return a backordered sweater I purchased back in early December. The saving grace in a spending freeze happens to be my weekly Friday's Fancies posts--because I still get to create outfits, even if they don't end up in my closet. This post is devoted to the items I would have really loved to add to my rotation if it weren't for operation spending freeze...



Making it 31 days without a dime spent on clothing is definitely an empowering feat. I know it isn't realistic to think I can go an entire year without buying something new. {Case in point: I shrunk a sweater on Friday. Stuff happens, right?} The biggest encouragement is knowing that each thing I don't purchase means we are that much closer to getting in our house. This pin really helped me gain perspective on that.

I'll keep living vicariously through all of you {and doing it up with Friday's Fancies} to make it through operation spending freeze. Since we're focused on spring fever this Friday, I can focus my desire for some bright and cheery clothes into that post. Enjoy your Tuesday--and I'll see you back here tomorrow!


56 comments:

  1. my boyfriend takes my credit cards away? but seriously, i think i manage it because my mother always instilled this want/need'ometer in me. so if i go buying a bunch of things i instantly get HUGE buyers remorse. that and when i have to bring the bags home to my boyfriend and he looks at me like "really moneybags".

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  2. ugh, I am so bad at managing want/need. I always bargain with myself - I can have this sweater, but I'll have to give up Starbucks for the month. That pin is perfect, though, and something I need to remember! I'm living on as little as possible this week as an experiment for my blog (will be posting a nuts-and-bolts on living in London on Sunday) so we'll see how it goes!

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  3. so proud of you chickadee! keep it going you can do it! :)

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  4. You get major props for that! Definitely something I need to make myself do, especially since I had some unexpected expenses pop up (car problems & chiropractor). And since today is the last day of January, February seems like the perfect month to do it! Thanks for the post! :)

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  5. That's amazing! You have a great goal, so I'm sure you can keep it up :)

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  6. You go girl! I'm also trying desperately to spend less in 2012. Bianca and I (we're in this together) just started using LearnVest to help keep track of everything and manage our money better. It's awesome! But it sounds like you're doing a great job on your own :)

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  7. Good for you!! I wish I could say that I didn't spend last month (well I didn't spend a lot, but I still spent) but it will all definitely be worth it in the end for you with your house! That's really exciting and in the mean time just keep dreaming things up just because!

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  8. I need to do this very same thing! I have been saving up for a Vegas vacation with my bf and family in March, and I plan to move out in June. I had a little saved up, but just bought a series of things I "had" to have for my Vegas trip...because a gold bracelet, new sunglasses and new jeans were so necessary. UGH! I feel guilty, but at least I haven't been buying MUCH lately...and after this, I want to pull an {av} and go on a serious spending FREEZE so that I have afford to buy the house things I need come June, and hopefully have some extra saved up. Thanks for the extra motivation!!! (PS watched your vlog last night, you are super cute!!)

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  9. That's a really good idea-stuff you DIDN'T buy for the month! I love that. If you did a link-up for that every month, I would totally join in! In case you couldn't tell, I can definitely relate-trying really hard to cut back on my spending, instead of my usual "Oh I like that! K I'm buying it." It's nice to hear someone else is in the same boat!

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  10. Congrats on one month! I know you'll keep this going :) Have you two met with a builder yet? If so, I bet that's really helping the process seem like a reality! xoxo, e

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  11. January has been the exact opposite for me! My online shopping has gotten a bit out of control. You have inspired me to try not to spend any money on clothes for the whole month of February (but I'm not terribly optimistic about my chances for success...)

    forloveorfashion.blogspot.com

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  12. Love your blog cute friend!!!!!!!! Thanks so much for stopping by!!! I'm your newest follwer!! :)

    ~Mel

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  13. in effort to get out of debt and increase my savings account--I've been living on a major budget....at first it was really hard BUT It feels better to actually have the security of a savings account.

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  14. Good job! Whenever I'm about to buy something, I think about how long I had to work for it, that usually stops me.

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  15. So proud of you Alison! That is definitely no small feat… looking forward to Friday :)

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  16. Great job! I'm doing the same thing as my fiancee and I are saving up for our wedding and to buy a house. It's hard but worth it!
    ~KAH
    http://cocktailsandfriendship.blogspot.com/

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  17. That is some serious will power girl! I am inspired by you. I think I will try to go a month w/o spending money on clothes. I need to seriously save for a new car.

    xoxoxoxo

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  18. I decided a few years ago to swap clothing with friends or to buy only (mostly):
    1) second-hand /thrifted
    2) handmade
    or
    3) fairly traded
    except basic stuff like underwear/socks ecc.
    I had to change where I shop, I discovered a lot of talented friends sewing/printing and a lot of micro projects to support women.
    These seems like barriers that prevent overshopping but they also lead you to make conscious choices.

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  19. It is so inspiring to hear you went on a spending freeze! I know how hard that can be, but you did it and should be super duper proud! :)

    XO,

    Sam
    www.ThePeakofTresChic.com

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  20. I wish I had your will power! I actually just bought some mint skinny jeans (like the ones in your post) online last night! UGH! It's out of control! Keep staying strong, maybe it will rub off on me!!

    Because Shanna Said So Giveaway

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  21. You go girl! It will feel so good when you end the race with a home! :)

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  22. My husband and I are doing something similar to this right now--it's hard, but I know it will be worth it! So nice to hear other's success stories!:)

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  23. It's been a while!!! Miss you girl and you're so close to a new home that you can decorate with your fabulous taste!!

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  24. I feel like blogs are the worst thing that ever happened to budgeting. It is sooo hard to constantly be inspired and not be able to pull the trigger. Keep up the good work! Kelli

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  25. I love that yellow sweater - I'd be so tempted to buy that too! I'm trying not to buy anything I absolutely can't to hoard away money for a house... Which means finding creative ways to outfit my pregnant self. Thankfully a lot of my clothes can accommodate a bigger version of myself and I have some pieces from round #1 that work for this round too :) It stinks but putting a chunk of money down on a house is going to be the BEST feeling and while I love my house now I can't wait for a house I love even more - even if that's a few years from now.

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  26. this is going to seem crazy but i buy something new maybe once every two months...:/ i spend WAY more on food and love going out to eat and trying new restaurants! we stopped going out to eat twice during the weekend and found we have saved so much in doing so! it's finding a balance that takes time, but once you do it seems like you're not sacrificing that much!

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  27. i'm so broke.
    thats how i manage my wants versus my needs. lol.

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  28. I feel ya! In Dec/Jan I went on vacay to SF, bought Xmas gifts, and bought my plane ticket and made hotel reservations for NOLA. So this credit card statement is rough. I am totally one of those people who has to pay off the entire balance each month, too. So my spending must stop for a bit ;)

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  29. I gave up shopping for lent once and my life was never the same! Ever since, I have been incredibly more conscious when I shop and have become way less impulsive. After going 40 days without an un-needed purchase, I realized how many things I just don't need! Congrats on making it through the month, it is not easy!

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  30. I feel your pain! I've had to trade in shopping for fun things for shopping for counters and backsplashes!

    Thanks so much for stopping by my blog! Best of luck on the build, it's just as much work as a renovation--I've been through both!

    Melissa
    housesweetitis.blogspot.com

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  31. Thank you for this post! I repinned that inspiring quote that you posted. I am going to try to not spend money on clothing and non essentials this year as well so we can finally go on our honeymoon!

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  32. I think it is so commendable of you to do this! I always think I can go weeks without shopping until another "30% off sale items at J.Crew" e-mail pops into my inbox... especially when everything is so cute! I certainly will have to refer back to this post whenever money is tight and I need help on resisting!

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  33. Umm I give you so much credit for not buying any of that, I want it all!!!

    You can do it! How exciting a dream home!!

    Tab
    my-cliffnotes.blogspot.com

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  34. ah! oh my gosh! that's almost worse than dieting.

    good luck! xoxo

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  35. What an inspiring feat! I'm so impressed — I'm not sure I have the willpower to do what you've done!

    Love, love, love your blog!! I can't wait to read more.

    xoxo,
    Megan

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  36. You're so good! I only bought two workout tops...but I guess that still counts, huh?

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  37. Best of luck with decreasing on spending! Since spending the last of my holiday retail gift cards, I'm also cutting back - we'll see how it goes!

    ...Lauren

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  38. Ah, very impressive! I tried to do the same, but failed at J. Mclaughlin!

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  39. working in retail is so hard when trying to figure out what i need and want! because lets get real, with a 50% discount to gap and banana...youre gonna want everything! Luckly, I will wait and wait and wait till its on its final thread on sale, and if its gone by the time I'm ready to buy, then it wasn't meant to be. At least there is always forever21

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  40. OH! P.S. thank you for the birthday wish! so sweet of you! I too was in a long distance relation ship for two years. Florida to California and then it was 3.5 hours away...so difficult, but definitely makes you stronger

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  41. Congratulations!! I'm cutting back as well — it becomes a lot more clear what you really need vs. just want when you constantly remind yourself of the bigger need!

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  42. Ahh Congrats! i almost made it a month but the lululemon warehouse sale happen, but i didn't do too much damage and I couldn't pass that sale up! Keep up the no spending!
    xx
    z

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  43. cute blog! glad you found me. :) do you ever participate in meet-ups with other northeast bloggers? there don't seem to be a lot of us on here?!

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  44. Officially committed to a similar spending freeze in my blog. Now I HAVE to follow through...

    forloveorfashion.blogspot.com

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  45. Honestly, I don't think I manage it very well other than just knowing when I don't have any extra to spend. I was definitely drooling over the jcrew catalog I got in the mail this week. At least my birthday is this week, so hopefully I'll have a little extra shopping money! :)

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  46. Phew, I'm glad I have a blog buddy to commiserate with over spending freezes! My system is to write everything down to hold myself accountable and I've cut down on eating out or ordering in meals. I also keep a post it on my Apple's dashboard of my "Wish List" in descending priority. So, if I feel stable enough to "splurge," I pick an item that's most necessary to decrease buyer's remorse or guilt.

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  47. Well done:)I've been trying to resist this January too and it's tough!

    Laura xo

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  48. I'm on a spending freeze as well because there are a lot of holidays I want to take this year! I'm currently trying to shop my closet for clothes that I haven't worn in ages - luckily pinterest always inspires :-)

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  49. You've inspired me to be better with my money! I'm not saving for a house, but my grad school loan payments are looming. I'm trying really hard, starting now, to not spend money on anything that isn't like, groceries or gas to get to work. We'll see!

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  50. Ahh! Ok, you've made me realize that a spending freeze IS possible! I'm on day two - it's tough. But having a big goal in the end makes it totally worth it. I'll keep you updated!!

    - Caitlin

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  51. You are incredibly strong to take part in such a freeze!!
    I admire you for that! Clothes come and go but a house is a much better investment!

    I do like you and live vicariously through my FF's for my shopaholic syndrome!! ;)

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  52. i dont think i can manage.
    i have a spending issue--major.
    but it makes me happy so it's okay (sometimes).
    im getting better though, now that i have a full time job.
    budgeting is key :)

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  53. I love love love that gold bracelet! Cute post.

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  54. oh my gosh I love this idea (what I didn't buy...haha). My family thinks I have a "shopping" problem because I am constantly looking at cute clothes online and pinning them, but really it helps me not buy everything I like!

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  55. How did I miss this post?! Great idea, and fabulous way to think of the items you love in a "What I Didn't Buy" way--I may have to borrow this idea sometime in the future. ;)

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