Thrifty is trendy! get orrf that bargain!

PRAISE be and sing hosanna! Yes I know it’s the festive season but that’s not specifically why I am full of hallelujahs.
It literally warms the cockles of my heart to discover that commonsense has finally prevailed and not only has Widdy been voted off Strictly, BUT it has at last come to pass that it is indeed fashionable to be thrifty!
I have always loved a bargain. Even in my high flying days of earning a decent wage as a London girl I was always up for a bargain or a discount. Of course living among the well heeled middle classes as I tend to, I have found that some (but NOT all) of my friends have expressed something of an aversion to my great announcements of bargain hunting. They seem to shiver and a pained looked befalls them when I recall heady retail tales of buy one get one free in Pizza Express, or 25 per cent off at Sainsburys. Of course my really, seriously wealthy friends (I have two I think) have always been up for a bargain and have often snaffled sales day delights that I was extremely envious of, not to mention nabbed the most coveted charity shop finds this side of Crouch End.
But now it would appear that everyone has embraced this age of austerity and what I am experiencing is bargain envy. It’s getting competitive out there in discount land and I think before long we may even enter an age where we lie about the cost of things. Back in the day girls would go shopping, max the credit card and hide the booty in the bottom of the wardrobe. When questioned about the little black dress they are wearing for the husband’s Christmas party they would simply offer that well rehearsed line “what this? Oh I have had it aaaaaaaaaaaaages darling. Really you MUST pay more attention!”
These days instead of the glorious gloating of “It was only £800 in the Chloe sale-BARGAIN!” we have “I paid 50p for this in Help the Aged-it’s SO vintage!” Cheap really has become chic but it’s not entirely fair and is something that a lot of us discovered…oh….at birth?
Soon we will have groups of girls systematically trying to out do each other with tales of secret underground-invitation-only-postcode/private school-specific sales at Boden or priority customer-only-available-if-you-own-a-Jag discount cards for Jigsaw. We will end up with sales and secret discounts only being made available for the very wealthiest of the wealthy while the rest of us hang on to our Nectar points because we know that the sparkly top/padded gilet/two pack of bras will all be slashed by 25 per cent in Sainsburys next Monday to Thursday.
It worries me that the queens of bargain hunting who have tirelessly walked the streets, strategically fought for parking spaces at Bicester Village by lying about ‘only needing the cashpoint’ and battled in TK Maxx shoulder to shoulder with dozens of other women may now miss out.
We have paved the way for bargain hunting to be chic and sophisticated; we made the sale rail socially acceptable and have worked our shopping butts off to get whopping discounts…why? Because we NEED them. All the posh, rich people who have always been able to afford to pay full price for everything and who blatantly snubbed the discount bandwagon can put their Burberry wallets away and leave the lovely cheap goodies to the hardcore shopanistas who have perfected the art of grabbing a bargain and earned their stripes in the loyalty card wars.
This is the rule. If you can afford to pay full price for anything then you are either very rich, very stupid, very desperate or ALL of the above. If this applies to you please move away from the sale rail and let us through. Perhaps shopping should be means tested-if you earn six figures in the city then get orfff that bargain.

Published by Sarah Adams

I am the author of The Life Edit, an eight step personal development coaching programme that harnesses the power of journalling and writing to help people make transformational changes to their lives. I am also journalist and writer who has worked for newspapers, magazines, TV and online for the last 35 years, and an accredited personal development practitioner. I have written books, appeared on TV and radio and have worked in the world of corporate communications as a senior manager. I launched and ran The Community Media Group for ten years-this is a social enterprise that exists to produce professional, community newspapers in socially challenging areas as well as providing free training.

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