Cultivate Simple Podcast in iTunes Chiot's Run on Facebook Chiot's Run on Twitter Chiot's Run on Pinterest Chiot's Run on Flickr RSS Feed StumbleUpon

Friday Favorite: Wear it Out!

February 13th, 2015

We’ve reached that point in our marriage where many of the things we received as wedding gifts or inexpensive items we purchased have started to wear out. I’m a big fan of wearing things out, I HATE getting rid of things before their useful life is over, it makes me feel like I’m wasting money. My clothes are usually completely indecent before I finally turn them into quilts or rags. The jeans below were worn for 5 more years after this photo was taken. They eventually made it into my travel patch quilt.
This year we’re going to have to replace a few major household items, like our living room furniture. When we first got married we had a hand-me-down sofa that was in rough shape. After we’d been married a year we finally purchased this couch. It wasn’t a pricey couch, so it was never going to last 30 years.
wear it out 3
wear it out 1
It did well enough, but we’ve been talking about replacing it for the past 3-4 years. It’s full of holes and the worst part is that the foam is breaking down. I vacuum up a little ring of foam dust around the sofa each week. That’s horrible for your lungs, so we finally settled on what we wanted and ordered a new sofa.
wear it out 2
Our new sofa is a classic shape (English roll arm) and we chose natural colored textured linen for the fabric. We knew we wanted to get something that would last much longer than our previous sofa. The linen is really tough and we can order new cushions if needed, when it wears out it can be reupholstered. Of course there’s no instant gratification when you purchase furniture like this, it will be 10-12 weeks until it arrives. That’s actually a good thing considering our only 36″ door is in the back of the house and there are 6 foot snowdrifts all around the house. No doubt it will be scheduled for delivery during mud season, stay tuned, no doubt there will be some kind of excitement that happens.

It feels great to wear things out before replacing them. It’s been a good sofa, we’ve watched many movies on it and Mr Chiots has used it for many naps. It’s moved with us three times and has almost always been a part of our lives. I’m debating on whether or not the sofa should be donated to Goodwill when we get our new one, it’s in such bad shape and so uncomfortable I’m almost embarrassed to pass it along to someone else.

Are you a use it up, wear it out kind of person? 

8 Comments to “Friday Favorite: Wear it Out!”
  1. penni brown on February 13, 2015 at 5:04 pm

    ok wierd lurker coming out two days in a row! But having to agree with your post. My mom had a gorgeous cross stitch hanging in the house that read “Use it up, Wear it our, Make it do, Or do without.” -a hold over philosophy from the depression era, but it embedded itself into all our lives.

    On a side note… We had that very sofa with the same holes and foam breakdown. I was ready for a smaller sofa and went searching for the best fit when my friend had a small couch for sale when she moved. I bought it, ditched the old one, and ended up with a sofa that looked very small in her home, and just as large as the one that broke down.
    Measure twice, right?

    Reply to penni brown's comment

  2. Nebraska Dave on February 14, 2015 at 11:34 am

    Susy, I’m so with you on this issue. When I finally stop wearing clothes, the goodwill don’t even want them. I am a firm believer to use what I have until it just doesn’t work any more or can’t be repaired. I’m so disappointed that things are not built to last or be repaired any more. I used to try to repair broken appliances but the cost of the parts were such that it wasn’t a wise choice. Well, that’s if parts could even be found. I’m still dragging my feet into the cell phone world. I do have a cell phone but only use it to talk and text. No browsing the web, snap chat, or facebook from my phone. I’m still an advocate that pictures should be taken with a camera and not a phone. Call me old fashion but it’s just the way I am. I laughed during my youth years when old people would not change into the new digital world. Now I am one of those folks and totally understand their reasoning. :-)

    Have a great day of using things for their full life span.

    Reply to Nebraska Dave's comment

  3. Sarah on February 14, 2015 at 4:36 pm

    How do you keep your cats from scratching your couch? Even with just 1 cat we’ve re-covered our couch 5 times in 10 years and it looks terrible even now.

    Reply to Sarah's comment

  4. Yolanda on February 14, 2015 at 9:53 pm

    It is so nice to be comfortable with being frugal. That is how we are, too. My mother grew up during the great depression and she was this way, too. It saves so much money, time, and all that… but I’m glad you’re getting a new couch. The foam disintegrating… not good.

    Reply to Yolanda's comment

  5. Chris on February 15, 2015 at 4:10 pm

    Yup, same here…use it up, wear it out, then recycle it! :) On the Goodwill thing, we’ve stopped donating to them as they take all the good stuff and sell it on e-bay, although they do provide jobs for a lot of folks.
    We’ve started donating things to local shelters, etc. as they don’t charge people in need for things like Goodwill does. There is also a great need for items to furnish temporary housing in a lot of the shelters, missions, etc.

    Reply to Chris's comment

  6. Kate Boucher on February 15, 2015 at 7:06 pm

    Would you mind sharing the furniture company you decided on? We are sofa shopping too, and have been less than impressed with the studf we’ve seen so far.

    Reply to Kate Boucher's comment

    • Susy on February 15, 2015 at 7:29 pm

      We ended up going with Pottery Barn. I contacted them last year and as of January 2015 their sofas are no longer treated with fire retardant chemicals. We were going to go with a local company, but their sofas were made at the same place Pottery Barn’s are made and we didn’t really like any of their styles. Their sofas are made in the USA which was something we were looking for.

      Reply to Susy's comment

  7. Nikala on February 16, 2015 at 12:10 pm

    I hear you! Our couch and chair are both 80+ years old. My sister in law reupholsters so you would Never know the age of the furniture aside from the Amazing hand carved detail on the chair. My husband actually makes furniture, so am Very thankful we likely won’t ever have to buy a piece of furniture, unless it’s a super old piece which can easily be reupholstered!

    Reply to Nikala's comment

Comments RSS

Leave a Reply

Reading & Watching

Shop through these links and I get a few cents each time. It's not much, but it allows me to buy a new cookbook or new gardening book every couple months. I appreciate your support!


This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

Read previous post:
Stress Less – Puzzle More!

One of the things we like to do around here is puzzles. We find them to the perfect stress reducing...