This winter has been cold. Working around the house usually keeps me warm, but this year I kept getting chilled. We did our usual frugal home winterization chores, but the house is older and can be drafty. We do not have a fireplace, so in the colder parts of the day I head to our basement. The heat in the basement works well and it’s a finished basement.
After homeschool, it’s time to head upstairs. That is when I usually get cold. Making dinner helps because I am moving around, but when I have to sit still, I just want to head for the blankets. Wintertime is my favorite to enjoy quiet music, and good book and warm blanket. The trouble with that scenario is I have work that has to be done. Since the living room stays the most chilly, I try to work in the kitchen.
To keep the house at a comfortable temperature while maintaining a stable energy bill I decided that my winter wardrobe had to change. Layering up with warmer clothes that made sense has been working to keep me warm and my heat bill down.
Here is what I found to work.
Start with a Base Layer
A base layer is the first line of defense in keeping warm. Many years’ ago people wore long johns under their clothing every day in their frugal home. I believe the clothing they used to wear had to be thicker and warmer than what we have today. But, my usual workout clothing was definitely not keeping me warm. So, I started to wear my leggings and long johns under my clothing. Pantyhose would also work well to insulate and keep in heat.
To not break the bank buying a bunch of winter clothing start small. Buy a pair at the goodwill, or check in your closet for something that will be tight fitting and comfortable under jeans or dresses. In the winter I try to wear my leggings under my church dresses, but if that doesn’t work then I use pantyhose. They do make thicker pantyhose to accommodate colder legs.
Second Layer of Frugal Home Winter Clothing
A good choice of a second layer of clothing is a long sleeve shirt. When turtlenecks used to be in fashion, I always wore those. Wool is a good choice for this second layer of clothing and will keep you very warm. Wool is a great choice because it doesn’t take heat away. Wool is not a good conductor of heat.
Another second layer of clothing option would be long sleeves with a t-shirt material. Whenever I go shopping if I find any of these on sale, they go in my cart. Especially white, black, or grey because they will go with anything. Keeping arm flexibility in mind, and the first layer of clothing don’t get anything too bulky. Work conditions also play a part in the second layer. Depending on the job arms have to be able to move freely.
Comfortable and Removable Third Layer
Choosing a third layer of clothing should be something removable. For me, I wear a lot of hoodies and sweaters in the winter. The other preferable item is flannel. A good button down flannel is a perfect third layer. They are not too hot, easily come off, and come in many different colors. This year before winter hit, I found some on sale and bought several.
I like my flannel shirts because they go well with jeans, and last a long time. Another reason that I choose flannel is because of laundry. Frugal home flannel shirts are washed many times before falling apart and hold no special instructions. Some may shrink, but for that a size larger would work. For Christmas this year, I received the best gift of all….a flannel shirt insulated with wool. It definitely keeps me warm!!!!
Another type of shirt for a third layer of clothing is fleece pullovers. These are wonderful.
Final Layer of Clothing for Winter
My final layer of clothing is insulated jeans if I can find them, a vest lined with wool or heavy sweater that zips. I like something for my final layer that is fashionable, easily removed, and warm. After many year’s of thrift shopping I have found several sweaters.
Insulated jeans are hard to find in my size. I am under 5 foot so they do not make a lot of insulated jeans for short, petite women. When I do find some they are expensive. I usually buy two or three pairs and make them work for the winter.
I also like to add in a fashionable scarf that matches my ensemble. Some days I am outside more than others so the fashion falls to the wayside, but I try to always wear a scarf. They can be useful for more than style when trying to keep warm.
My best frugal home mom advice is to shop for sales, layer up, and stay warm. Our heat bill has not been outrageous this year, and I have stayed warm in my layers. Conserving on heat energy has been our priority and goal this year with food prices inflating. Clothing that keeps us warm has been a big factor in heat conservation.
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