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Monday, August 10, 2009

My Splurges Summer 2009: Home Edition

Since I have never left school, I follow the school year, rather than the tax year, in budgeting. And, since Mr. FS and I do not teach in the summer, we tend to spend a lot then, because we can finally get around to doing the stuff we didn't have time for during the school year.

School starts early here. The public schools are already in session in my town. My school will begin shortly. So it is time to review my splurges of 2008-09.

Getting two good quality swivel chairs re-covered has been on my list for a while. Problem: picking fabric. At issue is an enormous Chinese Deco rug given to me by my father, after his sister left it out for the trash. It is too big for the room it's in, but no one else has the space. I am a poor decision maker, and fabric stores set my head spinning.

My splurge: I hired someone to pick my fabric. My mother discovered a woman in a furniture shop in Florida who helped her with various home items. She's really good! My mother encouraged her to start her own business, recommended her to friends, and she is now a successful small-business owner. I asked if she could work from pictures. She said OK. So she sent me swatches, bought and sent me the fabric, and will recommend a paint color.

Cost: $250.00. Definitely Worth It.

I just got the chairs back and they look great! Cost for 2 chairs $400.00 labor plus around $250.00 for fabric. The chairs are good quality, by the way; otherwise, reupholstery is not a good option. Also Worth It.

Next up: Ottoman reupholstery and some pillows (Why am I a klutz incapable of sewing???). This will end up being another $400.00 or so.

Mr. FS will do the painting himself.

It should be no surprise that I tend to be an extreme cheeeepwad with myself. I am making an effort to get what I want, rather than what other people tell me I should want. It is difficult for me.

But I think I'm going to have some help in another room next. I am so happy!

Any splurges of Summer 2009 you'd like to share?


Duchesse said...

My mother left me a ring whose band was too thin and tight. Spent $2,000 to have stone recut (jeweler's suggestion) and wider band made. Difference is day and night and I enjoy it- sentimental but beautiful too.

OOoh a Chinese deco rug- sounds wonderful. Bet your room looks entirely different now!

Someone said...

Love the philosophy. This is old-school, bespoke, and reasonable for the quality - nothing wrong with that!

As an aside, it's so nice to make room for wonderful vintage carpets. I loooove the 2 golden Afghans I've "inherited" from the family!

Chance said...

OMG! There are people you can hire to do that? Too cool. I think it is very frugal and clearly Worth It to keep high quality furniture and pay for the reupholstery compared to trashing the furniture and buying new -- frugal from many perspectives. Congratulations on your big splurge.

My Summer 2009 splurges have involved buying books from Amazon -- all on food, charcuterie, smoking meat, making salami and cheese, and after seeing Julie and Julia, the 40th edition of Mastering the Art of French Cooking. My Autumn 2009 splurge will be a weight watchers membership....

Frugal Scholar said...

@Duchesse-Still have a ways to go. The rug is great, but is 17 by 14 feet. Really too big for the space it's in. I hope one of my children can take it eventually.

@Someone--I've always wanted to be old school! Seriously, it's hard for me to spend money on stuff like this.

@Chance--Love the charcuterie idea. I read a book by, I think, Jane Grigson (?) on the topic many years ago.One of my colleagues lost 50 lbs on WW. Good luck.

There are lots of people who hire themselves out to do things, but Susan happens to be extremely good. I sought out help for my kitchen reno last year, but ended up doing it myself b/c all the "professionals" said the same thing: maple cabs, "peninsula," granite. NONONO. Susan is a zillion times better than I am at what she does.