Budget Confessions

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(photo by me)

If you’ve been following my blog for awhile, you may know that I’ve been trying to stick to a budget since January.  For a recap, go read my Spring Update and Summer Update.

I have a confession to make.  Despite creating this budget and “trying” to stick to it, the fact of the matter is that the only month since January that I stayed in budget was February, which also happened to be the shortest month of the year and the month of my birthday (= b-day money to spend).  Some months I’ve only gone over by a little bit, some months I’ve gone over budget by a couple hundred dollars.  The problem is that I got used to having that student loan every semester to get me through, and right now I’m having to face the harsh reality of not getting a lump check all at once. I’m starting a new job on monday, which will fully cover my rent, groceries and regular monthly bills.  However, it leaves very little extra for non-necessities.  I will be substitute teaching as well, but that won’t provide much more, and it’s inconsistent in hours.  Thus, I’ve decided that it’s time to institute a shopping ban ala Sally from Already Pretty.  I think that this is the only way that I can curtail my shopping enough to make ends meet, and start paying off my student loans.  My previous budget plans gave me a bit too much freedom, and I abused it greatly.  So here’s my new shopping ban, in place until I either get a full-time job or December, whichever comes first.

  • I will give myself a $15 a week allowance for spending at thrift stores, vintage shops, or on Etsy.  No malls.  If I don’t spend my allowance one week, it rolls over into the next.
  • I will be allowed one $50 free day per month, which I can spend anywhere I like.  This is to keep me from feeling too deprived.  This is also because I can’t give up Anthropologie for four months; I’m addicted.
  • I haven’t decided what to do about shoes yet.  I’m leaning towards buying no shoes at all during this period.  If I decide to allow it, then only three specific pairs will be allowed – a pair of brown dress pumps, a pair of ballet flats, and a pair of knee-high boots, because those all fill gaps and can be worn professionally.  Definitely no sandals are allowed, as I have more than enough for now.
  • All other non-necessities besides clothes, shoes and accessories will be in a separate budget area.  I haven’t decided yet how much I will budget for this each month.

Hopefully with this plan, I can keep from going further into debt, start paying off my loans, yet not feel completely deprived.  I’ll keep you updated.  Wish me luck!

(And Alechia don’t worry, our Anthro date is still on.  That’s my free day for this month 🙂  )

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About Diana

Style maven, knitter, crafter, seamstress, one who does not walk the beaten path.
This entry was posted in About me, Budgeting and Shopping and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

12 Responses to Budget Confessions

  1. qin says:

    I think the $50 free day is a great idea 🙂

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  2. Lesa says:

    I have just started a one month ban and I don’t know how i will do it….but I’m going to try.

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  3. spacegrrl says:

    i like reading financial blogs to help keep myself on track – i recommend http://www.iwillteachyoutoberich.com/blog/ (although he’s always pimping his book – but there’s still a lot of good stuff just in his blog) and http://www.getrichslowly.org/blog/

    (i’ve been lurking here a while – i love fluevogs, too!)

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  4. puglyfeet says:

    Thanks for sharing. Two weeks ago, I decided to curtail clothes/shoe shopping until my student loans are paid off. Well, I am going to make one exception: one item from the Anna Sui for Target collection should be okay. 🙂

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  5. Nicole says:

    I read this post hours ago and I can’t stop thinking about it… I’m completely inspired. My spending on clothes/shoes has been out of control lately, and I’ve got about $300 on a store credit card that is like a cloud over my head. I’m starting on the $15/week immediately, starting Monday, and I’m thrilled to have a plan in place! Thank you for your blog, not just today but every day – yours is one of my favorite fashion blogs. Thank you for being a real person. 🙂

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  6. chezshoes says:

    This sounds like a plan that one could stick to. I’ve been thinking this sort of thing over too – I may use your budget to model mine!

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  7. alliedow says:

    So glad you are keeping the Anthro dates, how would I survive without our shopping adventures? Budgeting sticks, I spend $9 dollars a week on groceries now. Seriously. Lack of money makes you cut down real fast. Very inspirational post, and I believe I agree with the other comments, you are a very real person and your fashion sense is impeccable. The money thing will pass!!!

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  8. ambika says:

    As often as I think I’m going to give up shoes, or ‘have enough’, I find another pair I just have to have!

    Good luck and congrats on the new job!

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