Let me divert from my university recklessness for a moment to ask you a question. Do you think thriftiness comes with age? Is it experience which makes you thrifty in the long run or is it something inherent to your nature? I know a few of my friends were very definitely born penny pinchers and a great many of them are also naturally as reckless with money as I was.
When I first set up A Thrifty Mrs, just as the financial poop started to hit the fast, spinny thing - thrift and frugality seemed to come with a 'fuddy-duddy' cloak. Before I mentioned my age or did outfit posts people assumed I was around 40 because and I quote 'that's the age people get into penny pinching.' Umm really? Wow! It hadn't occurred to me before that point, that thrifty and frugal lifestyles were in any way related to age. Sure, if you're older you may well have more life experience (equally you may not) and know the best way to stretch a pay packet but considering circumstance often dictates action - anyone at any age can be saddled with debt, recession and the job market from hell.
For me, money issues stopped me dead in my tracks as a newlywed, aged 24 - I had no choice whatsoever but to start on the thrifty path. This year I'm seeing a lot of younger readers coming to A Thrifty Mrs and adopting thrifty lifestyles. I'm sure part of it isn't through choice, our current financial climate is forcing people to cut back, scrimp, save and fight for every penny. However I'm also seeing a lot of young people who come here, who are fortunate enough to be well off, or in well paying jobs and they still actively pursue a frugal lifestyle. It definitely seems to be a trend I'm noticing more and more as someone running a lifestyle blog centred around money saving issues. And more power to them I say.
When I started reusing things, making face masks, using what I had instead of buying new I was branded 'a modern granny' by my friends but fast forward 5 years and it seems everyone is actively cutting back whether it is through necessity or not. I'd never wish for economic collapse (especially the social and personal repercussions) and I'm sure the bad is out weighing the good - however it would be silly not to stand up and say 'actually the recession has brought about some good things' (did I just say that?) because it has taught a fragment of a new generation to take control of their finances before they can wind up in debt. The landscape of thrift has changed over the last five years and I for one am glad to see more fresh faces who are proud of their frugality.
At what age did you decide to give your life a thrifty slant? What spurred you on?
P.S. Do you think people have preconceptions about those who lead thrifty lifestyles? Do you think age is attached to that?