Tuesday, February 27, 2007

From the department of discount shopping

I found a Hype bag for $22.50. I was going to sell it on eBay, but they are not really selling. I decided to carry it today. It's olive...it's leather...it's really pretty...it's not really me.

I found some new rugs for the bathroom because I am heavily involved in what you might call "cat litter management and disposal" and I had these bath mats all lined up to catch it because it tracks but I hated the idea of everyone who came over having to stand on a bath mat, even if it was clean. Then I bought a nice denim blue rug at Costco, and realized after I brought it home that it isn't machine washed. And...you guessed it. Somebody pooped on it. So that was the end of that. And then I found some nice cotton WASHABLE chenille rugs at Target, both for $20. Rug pads make the world go round, and the whole shebang looks nice, cleans easily, and keeps those darn dirty animals from tracking potty dust all over creation.

I'll tell you what else I did. I'm saving for another car, because though I love my Nissan I'm really over the idea of driving a 10 year old car, even if it's paid for. I don't want to tinker with it or have it in the shop every few weeks. (Hi! I'm a single girl! I'm a target for auto repair ripoffs!) So...car. I'm going to save enough so that I only have a teeny car payment that I can pay off within a year, because that is how I roll. I am a big believer in the debt-free thing.

So...I've been trying to think up ways to not spend money that I already planned on spending...like, for instance, on getting a custom slipcover made for my couch.

I know that sounds wildly extravagant, but... it's not. The couch is beautiful, and it's worth it - a couch-and-a-half, down-filled, super comfortable silk-damask-covered giant monstrosity that was artfully and painstakingly decorated with permanent markers by one of my favorite kids in the world. (In case you don't know, silk is not washable. When you get it wet, you get an ugly brown stain that keeps spreading and looking weirder and weirder, similar to rust.) It's not pretty, but it's clean. And over time this couch made its way from my favorite family in town to my house, and was similarly loved by me and a couple of cats (though no markers). I have a friend who's an interior designer, and I bought a bolt of fabric (20 yards) from Sir's and got an estimate...realistically I'm looking at another $550 on top of the fabric cost. I know it will be well made and all, but with a car on the horizon...the original idea was to restuff the cushions with more feathers/down and make a washable anti-cat slipcover. Because the couch is still a really good piece of furniture. But, I want a car. I am ready to take the fabric cost as a loss. Or maybe try to sell it on Craigslist, or give it to my designer friend to unload for me.

So this weekend I went to the Pottery Barn Outlet in Memphis (just Google it for directions, it's fab). I found a twin-sized quilt in a stone color, solid with an interesting pattern, and four pillow covers to fit some down throw pillows I already have. Let me tell you it was a LOT cheaper than the cover, the couch is the width of a twin bed, and everything matches beautifully.

Grady, the bum, has not gotten off the couch in about two days. At least the cat hairquilt is washable. I no longer have the couch problem hanging over my head, and maybe after I get a car I'll get that slipcover made. Or maybe I'll buy a nice big slouchy leather sofa, and banish all permanent markers from my house from now until the end of time.

Clearly I'm a value-status shopper, eh?


Blogger Delia said...

I must know where you got a hype bag for $22.50!

1:18 PM  
Blogger TheBunny said...

Surefit.com has some good prices for slipcovers that fit better than a lot of what I've found in the stores. They might have a good stop-gap for you until you get recovered.

4:21 PM  
Blogger Carol said...

I agree completely with the debt-freet hinbg. My car is a 1997 Crown Victoria and I'm gonna keep it till it starts racking up bills. Fortunately I have a great mechanic!

5:29 PM  
Blogger Anne said...

A girl after my own heart! I drive a 1993 Toyota Corolla--paid off since 1995, only ever in the shop for routine, predictable stuff.

Our hand-me-down couch and loveseat are looking a bit ragged, and I am in the process of comparing the cost of cheap pre-made slipcovers to the time of making some myself...but I like your solution, too!

6:13 PM  
Blogger MadDog Knitting said...

Keep the couch, when you can go ahead and get a GOOD slip cover made [$550 labor is not a bad price by the way]. It sounds like a well made couch and those big slouchy sofas are usually pretty to look at but don't wear worth a damn. How do I know this....for years DH & I were in the Upholstery business. Too many times we had clients that got rid of their old couch for a slouchy one only to REALLY regret it later. To get a couch re-upholstered may cost as much as buying a new one..but your old one was probably made alot better.

p.s. HI from Maddog - your SP7 pal

6:25 PM  

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