buy nothing new / part 2

I’m not one for new year’s resolutions. I don’t know. I guess I feel that if you want some real change in your life, tomorrow is as good as any day to start doing things differently. There really is no point to wait until January 1st.

That being said, I guess this year I am somewhat steering away from my anti-new year’s resolution believes: starting January 1st I will stop buying new stuff for the period of three months. I call it my buy nothing new quarter. A month felt to short to make a real change in my purchasing behaviour. A year, at this point, feels a bit daunting. I guess I’m hoping that three months of thrift store shopping only will effortlessly extend itself into a year. We’ll see.

Why do this? you might think. For one, I am very curious to see how this idea will effect my relationship to the things I already have. Will I start to appreciate them more? Will I find new ways of using old things? Be more inclined to repair instead of replace? Also, I strongly believe there is enough stuff out there to last us a lifetime, or at least a very long time. Second hand shops can be found everywhere and they are always filled with furniture, books, clothes and what not. All these things are already here and still functioning, and yet we continuously make new products for which precious raw materials are used.

So what are the rules for my buy nothing new quarter?

* I am not allowed to buy anything that is new, with the exception of food and drinks, medicine and cosmetics

* I am allowed to buy second hand, to trade and share things with others, to loan things, to rent, to make things myself and to repair.

The real challenge for me will be not being able to buy any new books and magazines. Luckily, books are easy to find second hand (and I have enough unread titles standing on my bookshelves), but with magazines this is harder. Especially with the international titles I love to read. Of course, a lot of content can be found online and I have quite a collection of magazines at home, so until April 1st that will have to do.
I’ll keep you posted on this blog on how my little experiment will do.
Inspired? For more information on not buying new things you can do here.

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