Tuesday, December 31, 2013

december budget


J.Crew Crinkle Boy Shirt: originally $90, on sale for $50
Loft Brush Stroke Dress: originally $90, on sale for $45
Loft Tailor Striped Blouse (seen here): originally $55, on sale for $30
Banana Republic Bella Dream Tee: originally $40, on sale for $25

December Budget: $150

Quarterly Budget: $590 - $195 in November - $150 in December = $245 for January

With the end of school looming over most of December (the entire subjects of medical microbiology and immunology had to be learned in three short weeks!), and being at home or at the library in comfy clothes most of the time, buying new clothes wasn't something I was really thinking about. One look at this month's purchases shoes that I have a bit of a black and white problem! I picked up the two Loft pieces on Cyber Monday and am so happy with both of them. I haven't had a chance to wear the dress yet but I can see it being a great piece in both winter and then transitioning into spring. I really wish they made the striped shirt in more colors as I like it and wear it that often. The Banana Republic tee was something I saw when I went to return a sweater I had ordered online. It's incredibly soft, long enough on my arms and torso, and has a low enough neckline to be flattering (I find boat necks aren't really that great on chesty girls, and most striped shirts seem to be boat necks!). I hope it goes on sale soon so I can pick it up in blue as well!

The J.Crew gingham shirt is something I've been thinking about for a long time. I was at the mall in Madison last week, and really liked this shirt. Buffalo plaid/red check has been all over the place, and with a 30% off promotion going on in stores, I was like "hell, let's just do it" but as soon as I walked out of the store, I felt uneasy about my purchase. My feelings were justified when I got home and didn't really know exactly how I wanted to wear it. The colors are red and dark blue, which in my crazy head makes it not really something I want to pair with black bottoms (the majority of what I wear to school). In addition, I've been trying to narrow down my style and how I want to dress, and red and blue buffalo plaid is just not something that will be that versatile in my closet. If I'm going to spend that much money on a shirt, it was going to be on something I really would wear a lot. It was definitely one of those purchases that wasn't well thought out, so I'm glad I was in a position where I could still return it. The next day, I received a promotional email announcing 40% off final sale items online. I found the black gingham shirt on the regular page, but marked down $10 off the original price. I've wanted a black gingham shirt for years, but never found one I liked - this one was it. Same cut as the buffalo plaid, but in a pattern that is more versatile for my closet. Even though it said that the 40% off was only for final sale items, I tried it on the recently marked down shirt, and it worked! So now the black gingham is on its way to me, and the buffalo plaid is on the way back to the store. It was all definitely a learning experience about not making impulse purchases and what I want to have end up in my closet.

As I look back on my purchases over the last year, I'm happy about where I am at when it comes to the clothes in my closet, what I'd still like to own, and my feelings when it comes to shopping. Buying something new is fun, and getting it for less than what the store would like you to pay for it is exciting, but I find that I don't have that need for new things all the time. Part of it is that I just don't have the time - school is very consuming, and the few hours I get to not be in school are spent doing fun things with my friends, not wandering around the mall by myself looking for something to buy. The other part is that I like all of the clothes in my closet now, and I don't have those "I have nothing to wear!" moments as often anymore. Sometimes I feel guilty because I've been spending "more" on individual pieces, but I would rather buy one shirt that will be worn many times, instead of 3 that I'll wear twice each. As the new year starts, I want to continue this method of buying and rounding out my closet, and maybe cut down on the budget a little bit to tuck some money away for summer activities.



This month, I also received a few pieces from sponsors. I've wanted a monogram necklace for so long, and was lucky enough to receive one from oNecklace. Back in September, I won a contest from OnlineShoes.com, and received a $500 gift certificate. I've been trying several different boots, but none have worked out so far. I did order these black flats, and have been wearing them nonstop since they arrived. They're the perfect simple black flat!

Did you stick to your budget this month? Was Santa extra nice this holiday season? I'd love for you to link up with other budgeting bloggers below! Please make sure you link back to this post so that your readers can discover other budget-conscious bloggers!




26 comments:

  1. You did a great job this month! It seems like you really put the thought into making good purchases. I think that I am getting to a similar place where I don't just "need" to shop all the time, and the pieces I choose to spend money on need to be versatile and of great quality. Shopping on a budget this year has been an awesome learning process for me. Thanks for the inspiration!

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  2. That Loft dress- so pretty!! And yeah lots of B&W but it works SO well on you...you have a keen eye for adding pops of color to neutral palettes..you're a pro!
    -Valerie

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  3. Beautiful pieces this month. I'd wear all of them!

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  4. Great pieces to add to your wardrobe for 2014! I love the crinkle boy shirt from J.Crew...definitely a closet staple! One of my New Year's resolutions is to keep a better tab of my spending habits...so I'm not surprised at the end of the year lol;)! Wishing you all the best in 2014 Fran! Happy New Year <3!

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  5. $500 in credit to onlineshoes?!?! O_O that'll buy you a lot of shoes, lol. Or, I guess if they sell the Valentino Rockstuds, you can just pick up a pair of those. Alternatively, I guess you can get another pair of Frye boots, which I think are more your style as opposed to the Valentinos ;)

    Good job only adding pieces that you love to your closet this month! I've realized that I need more hobbies (my default hobby is shopping when I have free time) so I guess I could try to apply for med school just so I can get super busy with studying that I don't have time to shop. Makes total sense. Happy new year, girlfran!




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    1. YEAH! COME TO MED SCHOOL WITH ME. ERIE IS SUPER FUN, I PROMISE (no I don't. don't move here)

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  6. I love this post! I think it validates the whole point of being on a budget- you have less, but you love everything you have. That's such a great feeling. I definitely was NOT sticking to a budget in October and November, and, while it was fun to buy more with a new salary, I'm definitely looking to get back to my budget. I'm also realizing how much better it is to spend more on a few pieces rather than buy a bunch of things I'll only wear twice.

    I never would have started budgeting bloggers without you so thank you! My boyfriend and I are planning a trip to Europe in June so that will definitely be an incentive to stick to a clothing budget. I can't wait to keep joining the budgeting bloggers!

    Kaitlin
    www.teaandsequins.com

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    1. So true Kaitlin. I think it's great that you had a few months of enjoying your new found income, and now you can draw back a little, enjoy the few awesome purchases you make, and then put that money away for that vacation. I'm so jealous!

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  7. The sales got me baaaaaad. Christmas money helps, but I will definitely be on a no shopping ban through Q1.

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    1. Get it girl! You are a stronger woman than I am.

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  8. I love the dress you got this month! Also, those flats look amazing. Are they comfy?! All of my flats right now suck (I mean they are cute but they hurt my feet by the end of the day). I also need a new pair of plain black ones!

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    1. They are! No breaking in required (unlike my Revas! owwww) and have held up like a champ so far :)

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  9. I am pretty sure your comments about your overall wardrobe are exactly how I am feeling! It took me a couple of years, but I am FINALLY at a place where I am happy with most of what I own and I have so many less "I don't know what to wear" moments. I am also finally at a place where I am willing to invest more to have more long-lasting pieces. It feels so good!

    Thanks for hosting every month, Fran - it has been so good for me to share my budget!

    Haaaaapy 2014!

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    1. I'm so happy to hear that Ashley! It's been great working on all of this together and getting to our "happy" place :)

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  10. I think we both have arrived at the same place through this journey of blogging on a budget… being happier with what I have, wanting to spend more on less (I need to find a better way to say that)… maybe quality over quantity sums it up nicely. Excited to see how your budget posts evolve in 2014.

    xx
    Here&Now

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  11. Is the link down? It's not showing up. I just love this series!!

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    1. It looks like the website I use (linkytools) is currently down - hopefully it'll be back real quick! Thank you for letting me know :)

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  12. Oh hey hey hey! January is going to be good - you've got some good things on your wish list {especially that gingham!} xx

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  13. Ughhh Fran I wish I could have as much restraint as you do! I've decided that 2014 will be the year of simplifying my wardrobe and this post is totally helping me to stay motivated! You are so right about spending more on quality items that you'll wear over and over again!

    PS love that dress! So cute!

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  14. I've been SO impressed with the suppleness of the Lucky's shoes' leather. Its like butta!

    New follower *hearts*
    The Working Girl's Shoe Closet
    blog: www.workinggirlsshoecloset.com
    fb: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Working-Girls-Shoe-Closet/157318177643118
    twitter: WGsShoeCloset

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  15. I'll be joining the ranks of your budget bloggers this year, Fran :) My husband and I have always had a budget but I've never documented my purchases. It will be fun to focus on making my closet better within my budget!

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  16. Love this post! It's so important to budget out your clothing allowance. I can get carried away!

    Lindsay

    http://lcbf441985.blogspot.com/

    lcbf44198@gmail.com

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  17. Happy for you and getting that necklace! So cute!

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  18. Ooh, Fran! I love the things you got this month! Both of your striped shirts are really great, and I can't wait to see you wear them in more ways on the blog :)

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