Project 333 and an Exercise in Restraint

Early in my life, I was what you would consider “working class”.  I had a home, food, clothes, etc. but I also had a lot of wants.  I wanted brand name items instead of K-mart fare and I wanted new clothes more than twice a year(August and December).  Now that I am on my own, I make a decent living and don’t have any real financial obligations besides my mortgage.  I don’t have children, student loans, car loans, or anything else to tie up my funds.  Somehow, I am still pretty much broke.  I don’t have any substantial savings, aside from my 401k – so where does my money go?  Clothes.  Usually clearance rack impulse buys, internet flash sales, and some stuff that I really, really like and wear regularly (that category is pretty small though).  I just have disposable income and the urge to BUY EVERYTHING.  However, after getting married and becoming *gasp* responsible(?), I am starting to tire of the consumerism.  I am getting claustrophobic; stressed out by my belongings and really tired of buying cheap, disposable goods.

I go in cycles.  I buy, buy, buy because of the high that I get from it.  My UPS man knows me very well, as he is here daily.  (Thanks, Amazon Prime!)   Then I get stressed when I look at all my “crap” and purge.  A lot.  Then a week later, I get bored and sucked into online flash sales or clearance sales at the outlet mall (I can’t say no to a good deal) and the cycle of buying begins again.

But as I said, I am getting tired of my behavior and my priorities are really starting to shift.  My main wants now include getting my backyard made over into a usable suburban oasis, meant to be enjoyed regularly (instead of just a doggie toilet).  I also love to travel, and while I get some awesome travel opportunities through work, I am without my husband and would really like to enjoy new locations with him.  So I am focusing my life on living with less, but better quality things.  Things that I truly love and being able to have extra money for an awesome yard and great travel experiences.

Which, finally leads me into Project 333 (http://theproject333.com/), which I found last year while looking at the Vivienne Files (http://theviviennefiles.blogspot.com/) during research for packing enough stuff in one carry-on for a three week trip home.  A three week trip home that included a rehearsal dinner, my wedding, and time in two different states (my family and his family).

I decided to begin Project 333; today is the first day of officially participating.  I spent the last few nights culling my closet and picking out 33 garments that I will be wearing for the next 3 months.  I will discuss what I picked out and how I came to those choices in the next post.

I will through out a disclaimer and say that I wear a uniform to work four days a week – so I have it easier than some other participants.  I am also not totally following the rules (as the original includes outerwear, shoes, bags, sunglasses, jewelry, etc.)  I need to ease into this project.  Maybe next cycle I will do it proper, but for now – I chose 33 separate articles of clothing.

So, Day One (September 5, 2013) and I am wearing pajamas (which don’t count as your original 33 items).  Is that cheating?  I don’t know, but I come home every night and take off my uniform, replacing it with some comfy pajamas.

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