Alice Catherine Alice Catherine

I’m guilty of being quite an impulsive person – I pretty much know right away when I like/want something, but it’s not always a positive trait. Especially when it comes to my bank balance, I’ve really had to teach myself to curb my spending habits over the years and consider my purchases more carefully. At Twenty Six, I feel like I’m much more in control of my finances and generally behaving like a responsible adult (most of the time) – I budget, I save, and I try to avoid impulse buying as much as possible. With this in mind, I thought I’d share some of my top tips to help you over the Christmas period and beyond…

With Black Friday being shoved down our throats at any given opportunity – it can be difficult to feel like it’s okay not to be shopping constantly…

Make wish-lists – I’m a huge wishlist advocate and truly believe that it helps to decrease mindless purchases. If I love something, I’ll add it to my wishlist and keep referring to it whenever I have some disposable income. If I feel like I want a new pair of winter boots, I’ll check my wishlist and compare the options I’ve noted down – there’s usually a few similar pairs, and one of them always happens to be less expensive…

Play the waiting game  If you see something and you instantly fall in love, wait a while before making the commitment! Even if it’s a week, give yourself time to consider whether it’s something you will actually utilise, or whether it’s just something that looked amazing on someone else. It’s like when you become obsessed with a haircut because you see it on someone else, then suddenly you’re at the hairdressers and instantly regretting a bleach blonde bob…

Mull over the practicalities – so you want that new faux fur coat or beaded bag, but how practical are they in terms of your current lifestyle? For instance, I love a nice pair of suede boots, but I live in Manchester where it happens to rain 75% of the time – suede boots are often a nice pipe dream, but not a practical wardrobe choice.

Avoid high streets where possible – This sounds pretty hardcore, but it’s massively helped me when it comes to impulse spending. I used to always walk home down a busy high street and would often spend my lunch hours wandering around the likes of H&M and And Other Stories. Now I try and avoid shopping strips unless I’m actually in need or something specific, or I really fancy a quick browse for inspiration.

Read reviews and do your research before buying – Especially if it’s a bag or a pair of shoes. Do your research and weigh up the pros and cons. There’s a fair few brands that I lusted after for years, saved up for, and then was pretty disappointed with the overall quality. High end doesn’t always mean high quality, and actually some of the best things I own were cheap vintage shop bargains.

Always look for a vintage alternative if you can – My last point brings me nicely onto this next point. Always look for a vintage alternative if you can. Especially when it comes to expensive blazers and blouses – I’ve found so many amazing dupes hidden away in vintage shops. Often these really sought after/trend pieces tend to be inspired by vintage pieces that were once popular, so be savvy and save those spends where you can. After all, there’s nothing sweeter than saying ‘it’s vintage’ when someone asks you where your new top is from – it makes your wardrobe more personal, and leaves your purse a little fuller…

Remind yourself of your long term goals – This is something I try to do whenever I find myself browsing Chanel bags on Vestiaire. How much joy can a bag that costs two months worth of rent really bring me? Is it really worth two months of graft? Will it be taking away funds that I could be putting towards my long terms goals?

The answer is usually yes. As much as I love pretty bags and checked blazers in abundance, I’m also very aware that I have bigger dreams in life than the size of my wardrobe and the catalogue of different brands hanging within it. I want to travel as much as possible, and I also want to invest in property. That’s why, other than the odd treat (because we all deserve it now and again), that hideously expensive bag remains firmly on my wishlist for now…

Photographs by Catherine Booty 

Blazer – WeekDay 

Jumper – Gap 

Trousers – Massimo Duti 

Boots – Grenson

Bag – A.P.C 


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1 Comment

  1. Summer Read says:

    Love these tips, I have a fashion wish-list board on Pinterest that really helps me budget things! I’m also one of those people who will wait months before buying something too, just in case I change my mind (or if its in the sale)

    I find the presence of black friday deals overwhelming, yes you can get some good deals but when it’s mindless consumerism I find it really sickly! x


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