Monday, October 6, 2014

Money Monday: Quality vs Quantity

The Scenario: You budget $300.00 to spend on clothes, and you have to spend it this week, where do you go?

Do you hit up Target and stock up on bargain tops? Do you head to H&M or Forever 21 and buy basically the entire store. Do you head to a mid priced store and buy a few bags of clothes? Do you head to a mid to high store like Banana Republic, JCrew, or Ann Taylor and get a few basics? Or do you hit up one high end store and buy one high quality item?

A few years ago, I would have headed straight to Target and filled my cart with their tops and workout gear. Then, I would have rounded out my day at Gap, and picked as many items from the sales rack if I could until every single cent was spent. 

Today however, my m.o. is different. Rather than buying as many cheaper lower quality clothes as I could, I am a bit more discerning. I would probably head to Banana Republic and search for some high quality pants and tops to last a few years. Over the years, I've noticed that my tastes have changed. I am content with fewer clothes, as long as they will are classic pieces that fit me really well, and feel good on my body. 

Another area that we have changed our tastes is in our food selection. When we were first married, we filled out carts with cheap treats. Lots of refined foods, refined sugars, and cheap meat. Now day's we try to fill our cart with fewer refined foods, and more whole foods, organic meats, and quality grains. While we are not 100% organic, we make a point to buy only organic meats, and as many organic fruits and vegetables as our weekly budget allows. 

In real terms, that means we have to go meatless a few days a week in order for us to eat organic meats. It means we need to fill up on sides like fruits, vegetables, and grains, rather than make meat the center point of our  meal. 

In the end, our choices mean that we get to do less, have less and do without certain things. But, filling our home and lives with higher quality foods, clothes, furniture, and healthcare items, we have found that the things we do own last longer, look and feel better. No better, no worse, but for us, it is a choice we are happy with.

Tell Me: What would you do? 


Kristen said...

I am starting to learn that quality is better than... well, lesser quality. Sure, I have some things from F21 that have lasted me 5 years and I have a pair of jeans that I paid $200 for that lasted 6 months... so it's all about knowing what's gonna fall apart and what isnt, what you're going to get the most wear out of - for me anyway! sometimes that's target and h&m, and sometimes its the more expensive places lol.

Denise said...

at this point in my life...quality, but there was a time when it was just a matter of what we could afford!

Mrs. Frugalwoods said...

We similarly prioritize high quality foods. We actually rarely eat meat because it's just too expensive--we prefer to spend the money on organic produce. And, with clothes, my ideal is finding high quality brands at thrift stores. Nothing beats the price of used :)!

Tracy said...

I'm with Kristen - when it comes to clothes, my price range is all over the place. If it's something I know I'll get a lot of wear out of, I don't mind paying for better quality. If it's something trendy or something I know I'll have to replace at some point regardless of how much I pay for it, I go with a cheaper option. I've definitely been trying to pare down my wardrobe and only buy and keep items that I wear regularly so in that respect, I'm all about quality.
As for food, I definitely buy organic and better quality foods whenever they're available. I hate having to buy the cheap version of something! Our grocery bill could definitely be lower, but since the savings would only amount to a couple of Starbucks trips, it's worth it to me to pay the premium for better food.

Brooke said...

i'd grab some slacks in the $30-40 range then some trendy tops. best of both worlds!