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March consumption log

That time again! Here’s what I bought this month:


*Baby monitor (new)

We’ve done without one so far, but had to finally get one when we moved Milo into his own room up the stairs.


* Emery pattern (new)

* Some bias binding, elastic and buttons (new)

* 2m of ikea fabric (new)
Ikea fabric

The emery is not in my sewing plan (oh yeah, I have a sewing plan, did I mention?) for a while, first I need to finish my red Violet and the next thing I want to make is a Chardon skirt, but Dave bought a pattern from this website, and since I am intending to make it at some point I thought we might as well spread the postage cost.

The notions were for the red Violet, which is happening!

The fabric was a £3 a metre bargain for my first attempt at the Chardon, when I get round to it. I’m not sure a white patterned skirt is really what I need, but it’s pretty much the cheapest cotton fabric I’ve found anywhere, and it does look nice, so maybe I’ll surprise myself and decide to keep it.


* Gap trench (charity shop)
thrifted gap mac

* Superdry shirt (charity shop)
Superdry thrifted shirt

* Camper shoes (new)

The trench I’ve already talked about, the shirt is for my growing collection of Deb from Dexter shirt, as well as part of my quest to add more shirts to my wardrobe in an attempt to look vaguely professional.

The shoes were bought mostly with a voucher I won an a competition last August (!) and needed to use up. They are a bit brighter than I expected, so they do look pretty in your face, but they’ll become less bright as they get dirty. And I’ve worn them lots! I didn’t really buy them with this in mind, but they actually fill a gap for a casual waterproof pair I can slip on without effort and that is suitable for the bike commute. Previously I usually put on my waterproof trainers, which are sadly getting pretty worn through.

Juicer (new, free for a sponsored post)

Although I’ve used it surprisingly often since it arrived, I really wouldn’t have bought this if I hadn’t been offered it for free. I didn’t pay for it but it’s still a thing, and resource used, so I’ve decided to include it.


This is all actually a lot less bad than I thought! It seems to be a permanent feature that I’m really skint towards the end of the month, I actually feel a bit anxious about it, because I’m not quite sure why it happens. I feel a bit ridiculous complaining, we are both in good jobs working almost full time, and well above median income. Since coming back from mat leave I have been working on poverty and welfare, and it’s really made me realise just how lucky we are. We’ve no right to complain whatsoever.

Yet at the end of the month we’re always desperate for pay day. I am totally aware that biggest part of this is choices we’ve made – no one forced us to buy a big ‘forever’ flat in a good school catchment area with a high council tax band. No one forced us to take the most expensive of the three nurseries in our area. These are the reasons our pay is largely allocated, and then the general increase in the cost of living is really noticeable. But if the worst came to the worst, they could be changed, and so I really need to stop moaning.

Anyway, sorry about this little excursion! To get back to the sustainability point, I am glad that at least this month’s budget hasn’t gone (much) on stuff. I kinda touched on this before (re coffee), in the absence of any viable alternatives to capitalism I actually think spending on services is pretty beneficial in keeping economies going without screwing over the environment. At least when I spend on yoga classes, highlights and fancy meals (on reflection, those were my biggest costs this month), it creates employment for people in this country, and decent quality employment. It gives me an experience and it doesn’t use resources pointlessly.


In other news, Meg (who came up with the original wartime wardrobe challenge), has written about a similar challenge that has cropped up, but designed for crafters. It’s called Sew for Change. I’m not committing to doing it, but since this is going to be the year where I finally make myself some clothes (that’s the plan anyway), I thought I’d see how I was doing against their points chart. Alas, I have run out of time tonight, so maybe next month. But I just wanted to give them a shout out just now!

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • señorita mandarina 31 March 2014, 11:11 am

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  • Meg 31 March 2014, 1:00 pm

    You are absolutely right about yoga classes, hairdresser, a treat meal (even child care)! These personal services are what Tim Jackson (of Prosperity without Growth, Economics for a Finite World) calls the Cinderella economy and something he very much advocates as useful for economic stability as well as the wellbeing of both the buyer and provider. In my case it is yoga, music lessons, a small venue gig, the occasional massage… but the principle is the same.
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    • Franca 1 April 2014, 8:37 pm

      I’ve read prosperity without growth (although when Milo was tiny, so possibly not too much in the frame of mind for economics), I thought it was good at problem definition, but pretty thin on the proposals for what we should do, which is what I read it for. I tend to always find that with academics. They’re good at pointing at all the things that are wrong, but awfy vague on the workable proposals of what we should do about them. (Possibly showing my government researcher status here). Anyway, my search for a book that actually tries to formulate some decent answers continues.

  • Style Eyes 1 April 2014, 5:42 am

    Love the trench coat and the camper shoes. I agree with you about spending on services rather than stuff as I think it actually enhances my life more to go and do things. Buying stuff just clutters up the house and is not sustainable either.
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