I love cleaning and scrubbing. I love cooking and decorating. I even like doing the laundry, but there's one thing that I really hate: IRONING.
My husband works in an office setting where dress shirts are required 5 days a week. Because I hate ironing so much, I used to take his shirts into the dry cleaners to have them washed, ironed and starched once a week. It was a pleasure to do this, and I felt so "pampered."
When we moved to New Zealand in the fall of 2008, the dream of no more ironing ended abruptly. I'll never forget the first (and last) time I visited the dry cleaner in Wellington. I had 8 shirts to be laundered and the total came to $64.00! $8.00 per shirt? Why? How? Better to throw the shirts away and buy new ones at that rate!
That was the dawn of my "frugal awakening," born out of downright necessity. I began to ask "how much is too much" to pay for someone else to do something that I can easily do myself.
Still, when we moved back to the US, I was excited to return to my old lifestyle of dropping off shirts for someone else to iron. Except now, paying $2.00 per shirt even seemed like too much. Plus, a woman's blouse was $5.00 and up - way too much when I can do it myself for practically free! So, back to the ironing board I went, armed with a can of spray starch and a good soap opera to watch.
Here's this week's ironing (2 weeks worth of shirts): 16 shirts - 10 work shirts, 2 men's casual, and 4 women's blouses.
I still hate ironing, but the truth is that being frugal isn't always fun...except when you add up how much you've saved!
Now let's do the Fake-It Yourself Breakdown!
16 Shirts Bi-weekly = 416 Shirts Per Year (Spray Starch $1.00 x 6)
Total Fake-It Cost $6.00
16 Shirts Bi-weekly: 10 work shirts, 2 men's casual, and 4 women's blouses ($2.00 for men's, $5.00 for women's = $44.00) Cost per year (416 Shirts) = $1,144.00
Total Fake-It Yourself Savings $1,138.00