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3 of my Favourite Blogs July 2, 2009

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1. Elsie’s blog A Beautiful Mess. It is soooo incredibly cute! Full of  inspiration & lovely shots of Elsie’s paintings, products for her shop & her very talented boyfriend…

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2. Just Like Camping Mrs Boo Radley’s (Not Her Real Name) blog is intriguing… she’s a foodie, a locavore, grow-your-own with a very satirical sense of humour. Have a peep…

3. Papillon Jewelry Tho Dinh’s very cute blog showcases various Etsy sellers/artists (including moi! Yay!) & her own gorgeous jewelry…

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Thriftily Frugal June 24, 2009

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I am declaring myself, from this day forward, a thrifter.

I am a consumer junkie. I buy magazines as if they were necessary to hold my house up. I buy yarn, fabric & embroidery floss because it’s pretty & I want it. I buy shower gel, shampoo, conditioner & hairspray for me & a whole other load (cheaper versions! tee hee!) for my fella. I used to buy clothes, shoes & books as if they were going out of fashion (some probably were!) but that started to change last year when my boyfriend & I moved into our flat. Back then I still smoked & would go out most weekends. Even now I think nothing about buying a bottle of Coke a day & eating out because i wanted an extra hour in bed and i didn’t have time for breakfast!

NOT ANYMORE!

I am too broke. It’s crazy. Our flat is roomy, it’s in a lovely area, but it’s expensive. We live in Oxford which is one of the most expensive places to live in the UK. The South East has the highest property prices in England after London. I’ve seen places to rent in Hillingdon (Greater London) cheaper than you can get in Oxford. The cost of eating out & drinks in bars are the same as london. The difference is in London you generally get paid more for the same job. (Not everyone in London is on a good wage I know!) So the reality is that I simply can’t afford to live the way that I have been.

These days we are all more globally & environmentally aware, we are informed consumers, but consumers we still are. More & more people are buying handmade, local, organic, fairtrade and so on. Handmade is great because it gave us Etsy! So with all the environmentally aware information floating about it’s not too difficult to make sensible choices. Given my own financial crisis i’m voting for local where possible, in season for food but not for clothes, and trades, charity shops & handmade for everything else!

I actually bought a tomato plant the other day, my first tentative baby step towards being more sustainable & having tastier tomatoes! I intend to buy pots of herbs too as they are expensive to buy “fresh” from the supermarket & they don’t last very long.

Soon my garden will look a little bit like the one above!

I will no longer buy magazines (apart from Frankie I can’t live without it) but I will reread the ones that I already own. (When we moved house I had 2 boxes filled with magazines!) Vogue, Elle Living, Zest, Giant Robot, Nude… they’re all great to revisit.

Books I will buy from charity shops. You get some amazing bargains that way. Why spend £7.99 on it when you can pick it up for £1.50? And if it’s a gift for somebody else I will slip off to a cool little bookstore I know of in Jericho, Oxford that sells brand new books for £2! Yep, you read that correctly!

Stack of old books

Kitchen stuff will be easy I will just head straight back to those charity shops.. Mr Joaly breaks crockery & glasses as though he were a Greek so its not worth spending much money on mugs & plates anyway!

Clothes… my theory here is to only buy them if I actually need them. I’m going to Mr Joaly’s brothers wedding at the end of August & I have to buy an outfit for that I don’t think baggy skater jeans & a Gremlins t-shirt would be deemed appropiate! That’s pretty much all I need though.

I guess I’ll just have to avoid BleubirdVintage then… 😉

I am also attempting to restrain myself from buying any more materials until I’ve used up the majority of what I have. My crafting hobby is costing a small fortune itself! Speaking of which i finished off my latest piece of embroidery out in the garden this afternoon.. pics to come!

Hope I haven’t bored you all to tears, just wanted to let you know that I’m entering the Thrifty World as my blog may well take a slightly different slant as I become increasingly desperate  inventive! Any great money saving/making tips you guys might have would be much appreciated!

Ciao xoxoxox

Animal, Vegetable, Miracle June 24, 2009

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What an amazing book! Have you read it yet? If you haven’t, you should! It’s a real eye opener.

Barbara Kingsolver, the author, & her family not only ate local but also grew/reared their own food for a year. Its not something everybody can go off & do in practice but eating local really is something people are starting to think about. Barbara’s writing style is quite witty & there are some interesting facts in there.. did you know that Turkeys these days are incapable of breeding all by themselves? Me neither!

No nookie for these guys!

Thats where ive been for the last few days, stuck inside the book! Ive finished it now though so it’s back to Harry Potter & the real world 🙂

I’m working on a gorgeous embroidery piece with the threads I won from Cymberrain which i’ll show you when it’s done & I got some fabric through in a trade with Erin

 

Haven’t decided quite what to make with it yet…

Gotta go we have to go out & buy food shopping!