Use what you have, borrow, swap, thrift, make, buy...how many of us follow this in order?
Typically, today, many people go straight to the top without a second thought. The convenience of Amazons one-click buy and Wal-Mart's 2-day shipping has made it like an express way to the top. Many millennials have been dabbling with making what they need/want thanks to the growing popularity of Pinterest and related sites, blogs and on-line tutorials.
Thrifting, my personal favorite, is an adventurous treasure hunt. Yes you come across a lot of crap. But the times that I have found those diamonds in the rough have made it worth it! Swapping is a bit more challenging. To have the same tastes, styles, and sizes can be difficult. When you do find a swapper match, the barter/trade process can be fun.
Borrowing a shovel is easier than a dress, I get it. I love to ask friends and family to borrow things like party supplies, books, tools, etc. Most people don't mind being asked and returning the favor is great etiquette. Getting creative and using what you have is always a first go to for me. Look around your house and rearrange....it can make a space look totally different. Adding a sweater or different necklace can transform an outfit.
Rushing to buy needs to slow down. I personally struggle with this. Buying ahead a season, passing around kids clothes, shopping yard sales, adding lace or sewing on a patch...all ideas to start at the bottom and SLOWLY work up as needed.