Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Getting More by Needing Less

Browsing around recently I saw an article from Cosmo about stationary supplies with the subtitle:
"Because you work damn hard and you deserve to be surrounded by beautiful things."
I clicked it. I'm not going to lie, I like beautiful things and I have worked hard. I wanted to see what I deserved for having done all that hard work. Apparently I just deserve a really pretty desk, organized and coordinating both in theme and color. I mean, this is an article from Cosmo, so I shouldn't be surprised at the click-batey emptiness of the actual writing, but dang. The entire post was just a way to get me to buy things. (They didn't even throw in a pretty planner!)

And I like buying things. I like buying things a lot. When I put on a new shirt I feel better. I feel 'newer', 'fresher' and maybe even more exciting. There's been more than one time where I've contemplated getting a Coach purse. Not because I'm a Coach purse carrying kind of lady, but rather because I feel like I'm expected to own one at least once in my life. (I don't know if that's a typical white lady american thing or what the deal is.)

Since last week I've been on a Japanese inspired minimalistic no buy. Yeah. That's quite the mouth full. Basically it means that I'm not buying anything from a chain store except food. Why? Because I want to save money and I want to invest in quality objects and in my eventual retirement.  Two things which have been pretty foreign to me. I've attempted the French Capsule Wardrobe (more of that later this week) before and almost had a nervous break down trying to figure out what to do with the Ralph Lauren wrap my friend Hannah gave me that I honestly can't wear because I'm short and it's a blanket.

But I did it. I cleaned out my closet. I also haven't bought anything from a chain store, despite wanting to. 

Photo Rights: Sarah Zepick Pottery
Things I have purchased this week:
$97 worth of groceries (this included a wet mop/broom combination.)
$15 handmade bowl by Sarah Zepick 
$50 handmade necklace by Jill Burrow
All of these things have increased my quality of life. Even the food. I have a huge love for salmon and decided that instead of spending $15+ on an order of sushi that I was instead going to learn how to make Poke. Thus, not only did I eat a great meal I also made it myself.

Photo Rights: Soil Stone Co

I have lusted after this piece of Jill's since I saw it at her show at Reverie. Finding out that she hand knit and dyed the wool means so much to me and I know that it's going to be one of my signature pieces that I'll wear and take care of for life.
The bowl I purchased from Sarah was something I saw and immediately knew I had to have it in my life. Around Christmas I had made Matt's nieces each a little bowl from Sculpey that had a gold rim. They were great for the girls because they were not breakable, but the one I made for myself kind of felt...hollow. Having found this precious bowl from Sarah that is beautiful in it's delicacy makes my heart do a little happy dance every time I see it.

(Maybe I should eat my Poke in my new bowl?!)

There's also been a numerous things I have wanted, but didn't buy because even though they're quality, they're things that I want to save up for. 
Instead of buying Chloe Flats (which I will, some day) and buying a waxed canvas tote - I made them. About once a year I go through a fit of wanting to do leather work and produce a few items under my label Syzygy Leather Co. Last year I made quite a few things I still use, so I'm hoping my tote will go the distance as well. The little loafers I made are a prototype and I'm excited to make a real version.

Not buying a cheap pair of flats and making my own out of leather I already had instead of buying a quick and easy pair has left me pretty dang pleased with myself, as have my two purchases from local artists. Holding something in my hands that I know was made with care and love feels so much more substantive than buying something from Target. Don't get me wrong, I love Target, but it's nice to feel a bit of self control and self satisfaction by not going there.

Have you ever participated in a NO Buy or do you yourself have a minimalist lifestyle? How does it effect how you feel and engage with objects? Let me know in the comments! 


  1. Eat Poke in that bowl, lady! And lots of other things!

    I'm currently in a no-buy. I did end up buying some stickers from Mochithings that I'd been eyeing for a while, though... My no-buy is more about clothes. I always end up buying things on clearance racks - Target... - just because they're cute and "totally a steal". I ended up capsule-wardrobing in February - purged a bunch of crap out of my closet and it feels hella good to not have stuff I hate/never wear/forgot about in there. I actually enjoy my clothes and getting dressed now, which is definitely an improvement!

    Also, those shoes are awesome! You're so handy.

    1. Same! I'm a clearance rack shopper for sure, but since doing the capsule I do feel muuuch better. I just reach in my closet half asleep and pull out whatever and end up looking great.
      I'm pretty excited about the shoes! Going to make the next pair black to go with the whole capsule thing! Thanks for commenting Amanda! <3