Frugal Friday–Cheap Beginner Sewing

frugalfridays-754123-778598.jpgSewing can be a very expensive hobby, especially if you’re just starting out. Here’s some ways I’ve saved money as I learn to sew:

*Borrow a machine. Often a friend or relative will have one they no longer use. If you’re lucky, they might give it to you. If you do buy, try the machine out at the store to be sure you’re getting what you want.

*Buy pattern paper for tracing and “share” patterns with friends or relatives. That way, you won’t have to cut the pattern. Just trace off the size you need.

*Hobby Lobby has patterns for $1 or $2 pretty often. Check and see. Sometimes it’s an unadvertised sale.

*Use remnants when you can. Our local Wal-Mart still carries fabric, so I go through the remnant bins every time I’m there. For small projects, it’s great. Often there will be up to a yard of fabric in each remnant.

*Some community or extension centers offer free or low-cost classes. Sometimes a tech school will do the same. Or if you have a friend who sews, trade off and teach her a skill in exchange for sewing lessons.

*Check out the library for books before you buy.

 Frugal Fridays are sponsored by Crystal at Biblicalwomanhood.

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Published in: on April 4, 2008 at 7:45 pm  Comments (2)  

Frugal Fridays—Just Ask!

frugalfridays-754123-778598.jpgOne thing I’ve found is that if you ask, you will receive. Let family and friends know what you are in need (or want) of. Just by letting our family know that we were willing to take unwanted items off their hands, we’re received tons of items for yard sales; a huge playhouse, picnic table, tricycle, and rocking horse for our daughter; clothes, shoes, furniture, and books.

Most of these items were in great or even new condition. The original owners just didn’t want them. For example, my cousin lost some weight and wanted her “fat” clothes out of her sight. I was happy to take them off her hands. We try to pass on the favor by giving things we don’t want or can’t use to others who can. We also sell items very cheaply at our yard sales (like 5 or 10 cent clothes). We may not make a lot of money off them, but I know I’m helping someone else get nice clothes for very little money.

It never hurts to let people know what you want! My sister in law had always wanted a piano and received one for free; she just had to pick it up. (So far, this hasn’t worked for me with receiving a new car, but hey! You know never!)

Check out more Frugal Fridays at Biblical Womanhood!

Published in: on March 28, 2008 at 11:39 am  Comments (1)  

Frugal Friday–Reusing Grocery Bags

frugalfridays-754123-778598.jpg    Okay, so this might not be the most environmentally friendly thing to do, but I think it is frugal. I actually thought everyone did this. I save plastic grocery bags and use them for little trash can liners, for diaper transportations (I use cloth mostly, but they work for disposables. You don’t have to buy those little diaper trashbags), for taking stuff to a friend’s house, etc. You could also use them for doggie poop bags.

If you’re really frugal (or my grandparents) you can use them for suitcases. (This is not a joke btw-my grandparents really do use grocery bags as luggage. And they even have a nice set of luggage. They’d just rather use a Harvey’s bag. You can imagine how much I enjoyed family trips.)

A good way to store them is to stuff them down in an old Kleenex box. You can get tons of bags in one and it doesn’t take up much room.

More Frugal Friday tips are at Biblical Womanhood!

Published in: on March 21, 2008 at 12:21 pm  Comments (3)