Junk shop in Islington, London

How I buy nice things without spending a fortune

You could say I have champagne taste, lemonade money. But just because I can’t always afford the things I want doesn’t mean I believe in going without. I’m just good at shopping 😇

Some things are worth saving for but, actually, I rarely pay the RRP: I have to adore the thing in question and need it in my life. You can almost always find a way to save some dough.

How to save money when shopping online

Cashback

My first tip for aspiring savvy shoppers is cashback websites. My site of choice is TopCashback—I’ve ‘made’* almost £1,900 since joining five-ish years ago. That isn’t a typo! If I can’t find a retailer on TopCashback, I also check Nectar eshops and Avios/Gate 365.

*I say made but you have to spend money to get any back. Find a shop, click through, shop as normal, then the cashback site gets commission for referring your sale and they share it with you. It’s usually under 10% but for contracts (phones, etc.) you can get a nice chunk! I don’t advocate mindless spending but if you’re buying anyway you might as well click through here to save yourself some pennies/get some points.

Promo codes

Another tip is voucher code websites. My favourites are My Voucher Codes, MoneySupermarket and VoucherCodes.co.uk. Brands/stores sometimes share discount codes via email or on social media, so sign up if you’re a fan. I often share codes too! Give me a follow :)

Online outlets

My favourite discount e-tailers are The Outnet, Shoeaholics (AKA the Kurt Geiger outlet), TK Maxx, Achica and Brand Alley. The Jaeger Outlet is hard to resist and Hobbs, Boden and ASOS have great, seemingly-permanent clearance sections.

Cheaper high street shopping tips

Ok, I know, not all shopping is done online! Besides hitting up bricks-and-mortar stores during sales, try charity shops, vintage fairs, junk shops (I love sharing thrift-type stores in London), flea markets, car boot sales and of course TK Maxx (and sister store Homesense) again. You can find good quality items at bargain prices!

Refresh your belongings, without splashing out

  • Swap items with friends and family (also known as ‘swishing’)
  • Hunt down bargains on Etsy, eBay, Depop and Vestaire Collective
  • Have a clear out—who knows what you might find?
  • DIY stuff you’re bored of—cut off hems (so SS16), add patches or pins, get out the dye, etc.
  • Make your own stuff! You don’t need to be super crafty (check out my no-sew bunting). An easy DIY I often do is to frame wallpaper samples or tear-outs from magazines, rather than buying prints

Vintage furniture store, Hackney, London

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