Thursday, November 13, 2008

Pinch Pennies...Without Feeling Pinched

I don't like feeling deprived, even in the name of frugality. Please don't get me wrong: living within my means, saving for the future, and avoiding debt are all important to me. However, that doesn't change the fact that I enjoy good food, nice clothes, and many of life's other luxuries.

Fortunately, being frugal doesn't mean I have to give these indulgences up. There are plenty of ways to live well, without spending a fortune. One of my favorite tricks is to cut corners in some areas, in order to free up more of my income for the things I really want. For instance, clipping coupons and getting my toiletries for free means I have extra money to spend on those designer handbags I love so much. :)

If you want to enjoy the good life on a dime, why not try some of my favorite strategies for living well and spending less?

  • Buy jewelry, handbags, and other accessories from crafters on etsy, rather than spending big bucks at a boutique.

  • Reduce or eliminate meat from hearty main dishes like chili, lasagna, or nachos.

  • Take films out of the library, or get them free from Redbox, rather than renting DVDs or going to the movies.

  • Purchase clothes and shoes off-season. You'll save even more if you shop at factory outlets or consignment stores.

  • Use coupons and gift certificates to eat cheaply at your favorite restaurants.

  • Invest in a cappuccino/espresso maker rather than spending dollars a day at Starbucks.

  • Free up more of your income for fun things by coupon-shopping, meal-planning, and CVSing.

  • Check your city's chamber of commerce website for free or inexpensive activities and attractions in your area.

What are your favorite ways to live well and spend less?


Cathy said...

I enjoy attending holiday craft fairs, especially those that are fundraisers for my favorite local organizations. I often find unique, inexpensive handmade gifts for family and friends.

Kara said...

I love nice clothes, and I know that my favorite store turns their selection very frequently. When I see something new out, I usually wait two to three weeks and by then it's usually half price or even less! :) I also clip coupons to save on groceries, visit, etc. so that my husband and I can eat out more.