Save Money: Join My “No New Clothes For A Year Challenge!” comments

By Wendy Mihm | Saturday January 29, 2011

Yes, you read that right.  I’m challenging myself to not by a single stitch of new clothing for myself in the year 2011. 

I’m calling it the “No New Clothes for a Year Challenge!” 

One of our core beliefs here at FinancialRx is that an occasional splurge is imperative, healthy and fun.  Without it, we can develop pent up demand, which can build up like water behind a dam, which can then burst forth uncontrollably, resulting in a dangerous, out-of-control spending spree.

To avoid this, I’ve built some rules into the challenge.  Here they are.

No New Clothes For a Year Challenge Rules

  • Reasonable clothing purchases for children are allowed.  Children are growing, they need clothes, and buying them is just as much fun—often even more fun—than buying them for yourself.
  • Reasonable shoe purchases are allowed.  The definition of “reasonable” extends to the replacement of current shoes that have worn out, such as running shoes, or sensible shoes that are used over and over again that have begun to really show their age (i.e. become embarrassing).
  • Occasional accessory purchases are allowed.  “Occasional” is defined either as every other month, or for a special occasion, such as to attend a wedding, fundraiser, or holiday event.
  • Clothing purchases may be made only for the following occasions:  a wedding, funeral, or business-related event or special occasion comes up and I really, really have nothing appropriate in my closet that fits properly.

It is January 29th as I announce this publicly, and I am proud to say that I have already had 29 days of success.  So far.  We’ll see how I’m doing come March, July and October.  And executing this successfully has already taken practice and discipline. 

What has been strange, however, is that I have not had to talk myself out of buying any particular item that I wanted really badly.  It has been more subtle than that.  It has felt more like I’ve had to get myself out of the habit of buying—like I’ve had to just say to myself “Oh yeah, I can’t buy that anymore” and then just walk away.

But do you know what?  I can’t remember a single thing I didn’t buy.

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