When I was just starting out, I bought more than I do now, probably due to my lack of experience. What cured me was after replacing a set of bath towels I thought were showing signs of wear, I noticed that the new towels looked no better then the old set after a few washings.
Now don't get me wrong, you want to replace articles if they wear out, and sometimes you really do need to buy a specific item if it does an important job properly. Obviously, you wouldn't wear a lamp shade for a hat to shield yourself from the sun, nor use a magnifying glass to read when you need a pair of eyeglasses. When something is essential; it makes your life better, safer or happier, buy it.
But nowadays, I'm more mindful about buying new things. I try to separate my wants from my needs; and I consider the cost to the environment with a desire to lessen my carbon footprint. Furthermore, I learned not to buy toys, tools, or kitchen gadgets that aren't very practical. How often will you use a bread maker, or a tomato slicer? I mean, you can make bread in a mixing bowl and your oven. It takes two seconds to slice a tomato using a sharp knife.
I also try to repurpose things when it makes sense. Here are four ideas that might let you use an old standby in a new way, resulting in savings:
1) Mason jars (above) - Canning jars are sturdy, transparent and come in all sizes. You can repurpose them in so many ways! I store everything from dried spices, flour, sugar, refrigerated leftover food, loose buttons and small office supplies in them.
I will probably never again buy another candle holder. Mason jars make beautiful glass candle holders, and the price is right.
Shoe organizers come in both cloth and plastic. You can repurpose one to organize all kinds of things to hang in your bathroom; on one side of a door; or inside a closet. Vertical storage saves horizontal feet! There is no reason to restrict a shoe organizer to just shoes.
Have you repurposed something you'd like to share? Your ideas may be even better than mine!
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