Hello again! After 6 months of tracking our spending during our buy nothing challenge, I feel like it’s time for a change. This challenge has served it’s purpose, because our mindset had changed a lot, we live more frugal without cutting out the fun.
Like to read more? Check out our earlier updates:
- Buy Nothing Challenge 2019
- Buy Nothing Challenge – January Update
- Buy Nothing Challenge – February Update
- Buy Nothing Challenge – March Update
- Buy Nothing Challenge – April Update
- Buy Nothing Challenge – May Update
We think more before we buy something, we try to grocery shop more thoughtful and we’re doing a great job overall actually.
So, I’ve been thinking about a new challenge for the month of July and I will explain what I’ve come up with in this post. But first, let’s go back a second to conclude our buy nothing challenge.
What we learned from doing a buy nothing challenge
Already after a week I noticed a change in my mindset. As I couldn’t buy anything, I had to postpone it or solve it in another way.
#1 You don’t need so much stuff
Most things we buy are ‘wants’ instead of ‘needs’. While a lot of things seem like ‘needs’, they actually aren’t. We don’t need tons of clutter. It saves time to find things and to clean as well. Win-win!
#2: Postpone buying helps
If you postpone buying something, most of the time, you realize that you don’t really need it. Or you found another solution in the meantime.
#3: Borrow stuff
You can borrow lots of stuff you almost never use from friends or neighbors. For instance when you’re working in the garden and you need a tile cutter.
#4 Experiences are worth more
Experiences are worth so much more than having the most expensive car or every gadget that’s out there.
We already didn’t buy the most expensive stuff, but I did realize that having fun with the boys is worth a lot more than buying something we don’t really need.
Our view from the backyard of our holiday home, that was an awesome weekend!
#5 We are fine with spending a little bit more on groceries
We learned that we are okay with spending € 500 (or a little bit above) a month on groceries. We could go lower if we really have to. But we love snacks like cheese for example, which isn’t cheap. We also love to barbecue and we love meat.
These things give us joy and I think € 500 a month is still pretty decent. We’re not doing anything too crazy. Plus we can afford it. I’m not going to save every penny to be able to invest more.
I don’t have to be the most frugal person on the planet. We found the balance that works for us at around € 500 a month.
#6 Kids cost money
Well, everyone knows that kids cost money of course. But we had to buy more than I thought. Our kids are growing fast and F mostly uses the clothes of his older brother L, but L actually needs some new things once in a while.
He’s 5 and loves to play outside, so especially his jeans are having holes on the knees pretty fast. Now I don’t throw those away immediately. He still wears them or I cut them to make them into shorts for the summer.
We do look for secondhand /cheap clothes, but we couldn’t spend nothing on the kids. Also, for L’s birthday, we did buy a few presents. But most of the presents were already bought last year when I came across great stuff on sale.
As I want to minimize for a long time already, I decided to make this into a new challenge, starting with my clothes. I’m going to go through all of my clothes and will get rid of most of them, so the challenge is this:
Own a maximum of 50 clothes
I have absolutely no clue how much clothes I’ve got. But I know it’s a lot…! Okay, this is pretty shameful 🙈 but here goes:
So, these are mostly my clothes… As the wardrobe is always kinda full, the fresh clothes are just kept in the laundry baskets. I did fold them this time though, that’s already better than it looked 2 days ago 🙈
I’m going through everything this month, clothes & shoes! I didn’t show my shoes yet, but I will make pictures during the challenge. Now I don’t have an extreme amount of shoes, but I do have too many. I usually wear the same shoes anyway.
What do I hope to get out of this?
- Less clothes means that the clothes I do have will fit neatly in the wardrobe.
- Having less also means that I will save time picking an outfit. I don’t have to go through 50 shirts any more. When I’ve only got like 10 shirts I really love, I can just grab one and feel good in it!
- I only want to own clothes I love and get rid of the ones I don’t like anymore or the ones that don’t fit.
- When I have less clothes, I will have less laundry, which is always a good thing!
- I don’t have to look everywhere for the clothes I want to wear, because they all fit nicely into the wardrobe. Everything in one place means saving time and also saving money because I don’t have to buy something I already own but can’t find anywhere.
- Having a good looking wardrobe after this month would be awesome.
Maybe I can even get Mr. FIM to do a cleanup round for his clothes. He’s got LOADS as well. You’ll read next month if I succeeded to persuade him ;)
How am I going to do this?
Looking for challenges like this, I stumbled upon the 333 project. It’s about having 33 items (clothes, shoes, jewelry) for 3 months (so for one season). I read though it for tips on how to start doing something like this.
The seasons in the Netherlands aren’t that much different. Yes we do have low temperatures in winter and high temperatures in summer, but I still wear shirts in the winter, spring and fall and I also wear sweaters in the summer sometimes.
So I thought lets make it 50 clothes and then just an all-year-round wardrobe. It saves time as I don’t have to go through everything 4 times a year.
And I see myself getting into a mess again when I have 4 boxes with 33 items. It will end up with some clothes from every box in the wardrobe probably and not being able to find the rest anymore.
My shoes don’t have to be a part of the 50 clothes. I’m perfectly fine with having 50 clothes and 5 pairs of shoes.
- Pick a day this month when the kids aren’t home or when my husband takes care of them
- Collect all of my clothes & shoes in my bedroom (also my dirty clothes!)
- Put everything into 3 piles: Love – Doubt – Out
When I’ve got 3 piles:
- The Out-pile will go into bags and will be donated
- The Love-pile will go into the wardrobe
And then there is the Doubt-pile. I will have to go trough them again and ask myself these questions:
- Would I buy this item again?
- Do I feel good in it?
- Does it still fit me & my life?
- Can I match it with other clothes I love?
After that, I should have separated the Doubt-pile into Love- & Out-piles and then I’m done!
All I have to do now is to make sure to keep it this way. So my new rule will be: If I buy new clothes, the same amount of clothes have to leave the house. It would be great to always have a maximum of 50 clothes and always have an organized wardrobe.
Join the challenge
How does your wardrobe look? Can it also use a good cleanup? Join me in the challenge this month!