I applaud the principle of buy once, buy well, and never need to replace. And I think we could all use the buy once policy for certain items, particularly things that are robust and get better with age.
For example, kitchenware comes to mind – cast iron casserole dishes, coffee makers, chef’s knives. Products that are an investment and acquire memories as you use them. For me, buy once works best with items I regularly use, but don’t wear.
Because human beings are incredibly complex creatures. We’re constantly changing and sometimes we leave things behind, or grow out of them and naturally desire something new.
It happens to me mainly with clothes. If I put something on and it reminds me of a phase or event in my life that I feel I’ve moved on from, I may not want to wear it any more. Usually it’s not a definite decision, the garment just gets left in the cupboard until I realise it’s time for it to move on.
I’ve given those things to friends, for whom they don’t have the same associations, or donated them to charity, to try and make sure they are used fully.
But sadly I never know which are going to be the keepers when I buy them! So sometimes I wear something out while hunting in vain for a replacement, and other times I’ll let it go while it’s still good. (If you’ve worked out a way of accurately predicting which items are going to stay the course I’d love to hear it so I can stock up!)
What would you buy once?
I’m sure everyone is different when it comes to what they would want to buy once, and what they’d prefer to change occasionally. Just another part of the intricate pattern that is consumer life in the early 21st century.
Whatever you’re looking to buy once you’ll find BuyMeOnce helpful. They ‘find the longest lasting products on the planet’, from clothes to homewares and beauty. They’ve even found unsnaggable, durable tights, which the makers will recycle when they finally wear out!
Heddels (‘Own Things You Want to Use Forever’) has comprehensive guides to help you choose quality denim and leather, and a Fade of the Day feature showing how readers’ jeans and jackets have worn over time and washes.
Do you have items you ‘grow out of’ in an emotional rather than physical sense? What do you have that you plan to keep forever, and possibly hand down to family or friends?