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A Life Less Throwaway: The Lost Art of Buying for Life
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A Life Less Throwaway: The Lost Art of Buying for Life

3.68  ·  Rating details ·  545 ratings  ·  74 reviews
Now more than ever, we live in a society where we covet new and shiny things. Not only has consumption risen dramatically over the last 60 years, but we are damaging the environment at the same time. That is why buying quality and why Tara Button’s Buy Me Once brand has such popular appeal.
Tara Button has become a champion of a lifestyle called ‘mindful curation’ – a way o
Paperback, 272 pages
Published February 8th 2018 by HarperCollins Publishers
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3.68  · 
Rating details
 ·  545 ratings  ·  74 reviews

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Great for rich white people who are judgmental and want a giant advertisement for a blog. Otherwise, straight up irritating and inspires nothing. Literally, not a single moment spent on the fact that cheap, shoddily made products are often all that's available for many and that's not their fault. It's a bigger structural problem and frankly, sending Apple a tweet to ask them to make more sustainable products isn't going to solve that problem. But hey, it invites a few more moments to be Holier T ...more
Jul 06, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: discard-studies
I agree with all the advice in this book, which pretty much boiled down to: Buy less and look after the things you have. But it just didn’t inspire me. A lot of the studies and quotes were familiar to me (e.g. the marshmallow test, the lightbulb conspiracy). There were a couple of statements that seemed borderline racist, and it was certainly a book for the rich. What does it offer? A pretty reminder that pots should last for life. If you’re lucky enough to afford such pots in the first place.
Mar 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is the best book I've read on sustainable living. It's that sweet spot of balancing out minimalism and zero waste with quality products and a quality individual-tailored, self-curated lifestyle. I will have to make a full discussion video on this. Its main message is to buy everything (that you need) with the intention of buying it only once and having it for a LIFETIME and for it to be potentially inherited, thus making you focus on QUALITY. If then that item rips or breaks to focus on REP ...more
Jun 29, 2018 rated it liked it
Very much an advert for her website, and a lot more about politics and economics than I was expecting, however I did enjoy this, and I learnt an awful lot about how advertising works, the wasteful way in which companies make their tech, and how to spot quality in clothing. Overall I think this contains much more useful and applicable information than wishy-washy books about minimalism (I'm looking at you Marie Kondo), and I think 'mindful curation' is a good yardstick to use. Definitely very inf ...more
Jun 04, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Sometimes in life we need a reminder on how to be a grown-up.  At least, I frequently do.  In A Life Less Throwaway, The Lost Art of Buying For Life, Tara Button provides concrete steps for choosing and purchasing items that will last a lifetime-not just this week's trend.  

Reading this book was like having a great conversation over coffee.  Button provides anecdotes and exercises on how to discover your personal style so you can make careful choices about your purchases.  She describes how buyi
Jan 27, 2019 rated it liked it
3.5 really. This was a library lend so I can’t really work through the exercises properly, and I skimmed some of the chapters that aren’t relevant to me (childless vegan who doesn’t wear makeup or follow fashion!). But a lot of handy tips and I have checked out the website several times since starting the book, and added a few good brands to my list of ones to check out when something needs replacing.
Sep 09, 2018 rated it liked it
Bottom line is to obtain things that will last and take care of them. For the most part, this has been our philosophy over the years but has anyone tried to get a flat-screen television repaired lately? Most modern-day appliances with electronic controls are pretty much "throwaways" which is horrible for the landfills. The author has suggestions on what and where to buy most anything although I ended up skimming some of the more detailed parts of the book.

This is a nice addition for those more s
Jan 30, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm not sure what exactly I got from this book...I think I'm a little more clear on wanting to buy certain things and knowing what to look for in items I do buy to last. But overall I just don't think this book said anything I hadn't already figured out by myself, and at times it was like reading a long advertisement for the author's website/business. There are a few good tips here and there, but a lot of them have that same self-help mushy, saccharine feeling to them where I know there's no way ...more
Aug 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
A brilliant book that sheds a bright light on our over consumption and throwaway culture.

“The way we buy things is broken and the things we buy are breaking. But we can break the cycle. If we buy things we love, buy things that last, and take care of them, we might just save the world”

This book highlights the humanitarian and environmental impact of the western world’s continual need for things. How we are marketed to to believe we need new things frequently and how many products are often
Rachel Blakeman
Jul 05, 2018 rated it liked it
I grew up in a household where you kept something until it died. Buying new meant you had a need for a replacement, which I continued long into adulthood, when I realized a few years ago that I can buy new things just because I want an HDTV or lamps that don't look outdated because they still work, but old habits die hard. In sum, I wasn't necessarily the target market for this book. It was a quick read (finished it the same day I started it) but I didn't learn much. Frankly this book is written ...more
Panda Incognito
Author Tara Button encourages readers to discover what they love, curate a collection of meaningful, long-lasting items, and stop embracing and discarding trends with the rest of the Western world. However, instead of addressing over-consumption and its tax on the planet with vague, emotional argumentation, this author exposes the history of modern consumerism and advertising in detail, delving into the social and personal mental processes that lead to over-consumption and waste. For example, sh ...more
Emily Jorgensen
Nov 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
I loved this book. It fit a genre that has been my current obsession lately, and this book nailed down the guilt that has been rising to my consciousness lately on consumption and wastefulness. I love the author’s passion for her topic and the business she has built, and I will be talking about this book to anyone who will listen!
Uttara Makker
Oct 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
It is an eye opener.
Jan 18, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019
Another book about simplifying and living with less stuff, what sets this apart is the section on marketing and planned obsolescence. If you think you’ve been manipulated this will confirm it!
Mar 31, 2019 rated it liked it
This isn't a memoir of her life learning these lessons, but more of a guide. It is inspiring and I learned a lot.
Oct 04, 2018 rated it really liked it
This was a great read. Some of tge later chapters were a bit more than I needed, but it seemed to have a broad audience. Hoping to implement as much as possible when I return home.
Rhonda Lomazow
Jun 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A great concept buying for life in our world where everything seems expendable this well written fascinating book teaches us to buy less buy goods that will last forget trends & styles that change monthly.I love the idea of buying for life and will be thinking about this before I spend on the latest trend.Thanks #Netgalley #tenspeedpress for this advance copy,
Muthia Ulfa
Aug 15, 2018 rated it really liked it
The book is an okay to good choice if you wanna start to getting know more on how to tackle materialism influence on keeping us buy more and more. She mentioned her website quite often, but I don't see it is a problem (maybe because I don't live in UK most of the products was not sold in my country).
But still, she explained her point in such a simple way and easy to understand. I could say it's an easy guide to live a more meaningful life. I am glad that I read this book before I get to work an
Annabelle Bell
Feb 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A life less throwaway and the buy me once philosophy is something everyone should take on board. little changes make all the difference and with the great ideas in this book you won't find it difficult to do. x
Kathleen Mck
Aug 01, 2018 rated it really liked it
A must read for anyone concerned with our over abundant lifestyles. A lesson on less is more and how to declutter your life and learn the art of "mindful curation". The author has some great tips on buying for quality and for life.
Nathalie Claes
Feb 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
great book! Well written and inspirational.
Nicola Whilton
Apr 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
A nice introduction to an excellent idea. Worth reading.
Dec 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
Almost daily we read about, hear about, are social media-ed about downsizing, decluttering, being less wasteful, purchasing carefully and mindfully - you get my drift. So much advice, help, mindfulness, guilt trips, recycling, mental torment. In my own little way my 2018 New Year Resolution was to not buy any new clothes for 12 months, other than replacement underwear, socks, walking shoes, and Kmart sports gear. On the first day of a new year, I now look back and think I did pretty well, not pe ...more
Danella Yaptinchay
Now that we’ve all cleaned out our homes the Marie Kondo way and have kept only the things that spark joy, the question becomes: how do we maintain it? Tara Button addresses this by helping us shift our mindset altogether about life and the things we collect.

I like how she sheds light on the things that have shaped our modern psyche. With some pretty strong zing, she cites studies and personal experiences to make us think twice about how we are living our 21st century lives. She gives great thi
Felicia Owens
Mar 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing
PICK. THIS. UP. NOW. Button starts this book with a strong study of manufacturing and consumer culture through the last few hundred years, citing studies that proved companies colluded to ensure products only worked for so long. She provides such a clear wake-up call to reconsider how I interact with the tangible objects around me. The second half of the book provides great templates and action plans for minimizing your home and buying (and taking care of) quality products that will last as long ...more
Jan 17, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: essays
I had expected this book to be more of a tidying and housekeeping sort of book but it ended up being far more wholistic. It covered everything from the perils of the fast fashion industry to brainwashing and manipulations of the advertising industries.

While the book is clearly from the perspective of someone from the UK, its easy to translate local euphemisms like "the hob" and "going on a mini break" into the American equivalents.

Many of the points are valid and is a solid entry point into man
Dec 07, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: non-fiction
There isn't a lot of useful advice on how to actually acquire things that will last for life. Most of advice here is on how not to buy/overspend, which I think most people who have picked up this book already have figured out. This book is also advertising heavily the author's website, BuyMeOnce, which is ironic given that, in her book, the author speaks out so vehemently against the advertising industry. I looked at her website, and it's unclear to me whether it's recommending useful stuff that ...more
Dec 12, 2018 rated it liked it
I enjoyed parts of this book, like the research portions on planned obsolescence and how marketing companies manipulate audiences. Parts of it were tedious such as the portion about different types of clothes and their structures- there was literally a list with 30 different types of shirt collars!!! She did keep plugging her website (BuyMeOnce) but after checking the website, I can see why. There isn't a lot of items on it, so she needs people to give more feedback on products in order to drum ...more
Dec 27, 2018 rated it it was ok
The book repeats the concepts introduced in many other books and around the halfway it turned into marketing and consumer behavior textbook, which wasn't something I expected or looked forward to. Some examples given are also quite cliche by now (like lightbulb conspiracy or target coupons & pregnancy case). If you have some background in marketing (I do), skip this book and save yourself a couple of hours. If you have no clue about advertising, haven't read any other books or blogs on minim ...more
Jun 30, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: for-yourself
The thing I liked most about this book was the use of the term "mindful curation." It's not necessarily about stopping your spending but more about investing your money in not only things that will last but things that fit you and your lifestyle. It went a little deep into how we get suckered into stuff (cheap or otherwise) and while I totally see where the hype of the ending was coming from it felt a little fanatical even as it spoke truths. Watch out for the sticker shock on suggested purchase ...more
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