How long can Sheena Grant go wothout buying anything new? Could she be £1,000 better off at the end of the year?

How long before Sheena gives in to the lure of the shops?

How long before Sheena gives in to the lure of the shops? - Credit: Gregg Brown

Sheena Grant’s thrifty living tips.

What would you do if you were handed £1,000 you weren’t expecting? Or maybe even £2,000?

You might decide to go on holiday, pay off some more of your mortgage or perhaps clear your debts.

Let’s be honest, it’s one of those things we might daydream about when staring out of the window for a few moments of glorious escapism in the middle of a hectic day, but it’s not something many of us imagine might actually happen.

But maybe, just maybe, it could ? if we adopted a bit of radical thinking. In moments of random daydreaming I’ve been toying with just such an idea for a while now.

After a year of trying to live more thriftily for the sake of my bank balance, the health of the planet and because of a deep unease about our seemingly insatiable (but ultimately pointless) appetite for material things, I’ve come to a couple of conclusions:

1. It’s been harder than I imagined to swim against the tide in a society dominated by the idea that the accumulation of “stuff” will enhance your life, especially when a bit of retail therapy feels good, even if only for an instant.

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2. Tinkering around the lifestyle edges with a bit of composting, a smattering of wild food foraging and constantly patrolling the house to turn off lights others have left on is only ever going to produce miminal results.

For that reason, I’m thinking bigger. Much bigger. For my next year of thrifty living I’m going to try to avoid buying anything new, except for food, medicines and any other essentials I can’t source from anywhere else. To stand any chance of success I’m going to have to be resourceful. Clothes, for instance, will have to be homemade or preloved (although I prefer to call them vintage). I might even have a go at making my own toiletries (apologies to anyone I come into close proximity with if this is less than successful).

But, on the plus side, once I’ve stopped frittering away cash I hope to have more of it ? and options to choose a different way of living. And each week, I’ll share the highs and lows with you.

Email Sheena Grant or tweet using #ThriftyLiving.