Posts Tagged ‘trademe’

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Walking in other men’s shoes

July 1, 2010

I reckon I’ve spent about $120 on shoes on Trade Me this year. For this outlay I’ve received four pairs of very solid, classy, high end shoes — classic style, old-school welts, leather sole, good condition. Only one pair has not fit, and I’m going to sell it again, or maybe trade them in at my favourite second hand clothes shop, so I expect to realise a small loss on them. I reckon I am still well, well ahead of the game here. I have shoes which prompt unsolicited compliments for a fraction of the price they would have cost new. In fact, I found one pair of the very same make and style in a Cuba St vintage shop for twice what I paid on Trade Me.

Trade Me’s saved search facility has been very helpful. I have a saved search in the mens shoes 8-8.5 category on “´╗┐´╗┐loake OR barker OR grenson OR church OR vintage” which pretty much covers anything of interest, ie English-made welted shoes and odd old ones. The thing about the English welted shoes is that they are generally made to a very high standard and are designed to be resoled and have a long life.

Another thing I’ve learned is to ask for measurements as well as the size. People can be a bit vague about US vs UK sizes, and sizing varies anyway, so find out how long and how wide the shoes are and compare this with a pair that fits.

Knowing how to do a good spit shine has also brought them up a treat. Old leather, well polished, looks better to me than new.

About the only problem is that the shoes are very nice, and the pleasure of acquiring a bargain is strong, so I’m kind of tempted now to keep going and buy more shoes than I need. I guess I need to delete that saved search…

At a meta level, I believe I’ve practised proper purchasing. I read up on the subject. I looked around to find out what the normal price was. I took the time to find a cheap source. I lurked and ruminated before buying. Mission accomplished.

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Best investment ever. The footstool

October 26, 2009

I originally bought this stool with a 70s ‘lazy-boy’ design, waaaay back when I came home from Melbourne. Since then I’ve constantly lambasted anyone who’ll listen with the tale of the one that got away, a matching armchair and stool. Now, this is mostly because it is extremely comfy, and only cost $15, an absolute steal.

Since that time, i’m come to regret it more. This is because this stool has become the most oft-used piece of furniture in the apartment. In addition to serving as a footstool, it has been:

  • a seat for parents watching a wee man in the bath
  • a seat for parents feeding a wee man at his high chair
  • a spare chair at the dinner table when people come over

And, most importantly:

  • A zimmer frame for a wee man learning to walk about the house.

So why is this on Frugal Me you ask?

Because today I saw a walking-toy for boddlers (babies who aren’t quite toddlers), for a whooping $120!! And I asked myself, why in the hell spend that money when you have the superfootstool hanging about the place?

Again – the best damn investment I ever made.