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Tuesday, March 2, 2010

An Unexpected Time and Money Saver: For Shoppers Only

For a Frugal Scholar, I spend a lot of time and money shopping for and with my dear daughter, formerly known as Miss Em, and now known as Lucy Marmalade, since she is the proprietress of a blog of that name.

In part, this is family tradition. My mother did the same for me. She even bought me a pair of pants this year! Also, the best way to create frugal children is to help them see that frugality does not involve deprivation and an air of shabbiness, but can involve fun, creativity, chic, and abundance.

Also, Lucy M. has proven to be a household asset. She cuts my hair, Frugal Son's hair, and she would cut her father's hair, only he has almost none at all, so he can trim it himself.

Finally--and maybe mostly--Lucy M. is very economical. She chose a no-cost college. It's not that I feel I owe her anything for that choice, but, as Mr. FS says, people should see that there are consequences to decisions. In this case, a no-cost college option leads to more treats.

Anyway, Lucy M. has been pining for a coat. I got her a wool jacket at Goodwill to serve as a temp coat. Then I noticed that Nordstroms is having a very good coat sale. I realized that we could have coats sent ($8.00), try them on, and then return what we didn't want ($6.00). So for $14.00 we could have a no-time-at-all shopping experience, even aside from the fact that there is no Nordstroms in my state.

So, Lucy M. picked out a few to try on. We ordered them. Guess what? Over $200.00 and shipping is free. This will be a $6.00 shopping trip, for whatever we return.

I hate going to malls and department stores. The coats will be waiting for Lucy to try them on over Spring Break. Perfect.


simple in France said...

How funny, I hate malls too. And sometimes it keeps me from buying clothes I need--the jacket is a need! So good for you.

Mary said...

and then there's Zappos, free shipping in both directions! Love it!

Lucy Marmalade said...

Can't wait to try on my coats! I was dubious about ordering because shipping costs irk me, but when you pointed out that the $6 shipping would cost less than the gas to drive to a real store--not to mention the precious time it would take--I was convinced.

Revanche said...

I love this! I just did this with my jeans shopping from Old Navy (except I have to return in store to avoid shipping costs, thus nullifying the No-Trip aspect). Sadly, none of them were exactly what I wanted/needed.

Linda said...

That is similar to how I do my maternity shopping (baby due in June). JCPenney is the only place where I like the maternity clothes, so I order everything I am interested in in a couple of sizes (if you are signed up for their e-mails you regularly get codes for free shipping over $49). Then I try things on at home and return the things I don't want to the small JCPenney 10 miles from my house.

Anonymous said...

I think that having no Nordstrom in your state is a plus because it saves you from having to pay sales tax on your online order.

see you there! said...

Who knew? I hate shopping but Nordstroms as least has decent quality last I checked.

Thanks for the info.


Duchesse said...

I've noticed free shipping (usually just for given periods), formerly offered only at Christmas, is now regularly offered by many of the big online vendors like Land's End, J Crew, LL Bean and Talbots.

Hope the 'expedition' has a happy ending!

Frugal Scholar said...

@simple--Well, it's not REALLY a need. But it's nice of you to say so.

@Mary--My son has gotten some shoe from Zappo's--you are right--the return was very easy.

@Lucy--Just arrived yesterday.

@Revanche--I do that with Lands End--you can return to Sears. Why is it so hard to find jeans that fit?

@Linda--I've recently starting liking JCP too. Their jeans are the only ones I wear nowadays (ana). Maternity clothes are so much nicer than when I wore them. Lucky you!

@lore--I wish I did though. I have to wait till I visit my mother in FL.

@seeyou--You're welcome. Glad the info helped.

@Duchesse--I've noticed tht too. To tell you the truth, shipping costs always kept me from buying on-line. Now, with free shipping, the temptations are greater.