How To Be a Cheapskate at Target!

by Katy on July 18, 2013 · 23 comments

Today I made my bi-annual foray into Target for the sole reason to price their curtain rods. I had just bought two of those Ikea wire curtain assembly thingies, and was reeling from sticker shock. (I later decided to return one of them.)

And out of the corner of my eye I spied what I thought was the word “Cheapskate.” 

“Yay, something for me!” screamed my chemical addled brain. (My excuse is that the store seriously stank from plastic off gassing.)

Sadly, the word I had spied was “Chesapeake,” NOT “Cheapskate.”

What? No!!!!!!!


So no, there was nothing for me. Except a penny on the ground, which I ceremoniously scooped up and dropped into my purse.

And that, my fellow Non-Consumers is how to shop at Target!

Katy Wolk-Stanley

“Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without.”

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{ 23 comments… read them below or add one }

JaneUlness July 19, 2013 at 3:17 am

I, am not really fond of target. I went with my daughter once, I got two outfits for the baby. The t shirts kept getting shorter and wider with each wash. I have had better luck at consignment shop and goodwill. At least then, of the clothes were going to fall apart, they have already been washed multiple times at someone else’s expense!


bella July 19, 2013 at 4:11 am

I was a big Target shopper, my friends and I used to play a game on facebook, When we were going we used to change our status.. I’m going to Target and everyone used to try a guess how much you spent! Now after really raining myself in thanks to websites like yours. I avoid Target, I only go in there if I need a present for a kids birthday party. I am really disgusted with myself for the amount I have spent there.


Alexandra July 19, 2013 at 4:12 am

I too smell the off-gas and find i want to get out of there fast.
all their clothes can be better found at thrift stores. My husband’s work gives “bonuses” every quarter for good jobs done and the bonus is a target or walmart gift card. we use them for socks and underwear and then get the heck outta there.


marie July 19, 2013 at 4:33 am

Katy, I find good price on curtain rods at Big Lots


Kate July 19, 2013 at 4:52 am

The worst off gassing I have ever smelled is at the store 5 Below. Holy moly you walk in and it knocks you off your feet.
I sometimes think I see certain wordx- it’s funny how our brains do that! I used to be a Target shopper, but now I avoid it like the plague.



Reese July 19, 2013 at 5:45 am

I have to play devil’s advocate–I shop at Target. Weekly. I also have their store card (5% off purchases and free online shipping). The store card not only saves the % off, but in the event of gift registries and birthdays, we can ship directly to someone for free.

I buy toiletries and household items (cleaners, trash bags, toilet paper, replacement pieces to cleaning supplies, etc.) from Target. Their prices almost always match or beat Walmart’s. And the store is FAR more pleasant to be in than Walmart. I’ve had less near-death experiences in their parking lot as well.

I don’t go crazy in the store. I just get what I need, use coupons and leave. I find it’s often worthwhile!


dusty July 19, 2013 at 6:18 am

I do go into Target to buy towels. I can’t remember the brand but they are the fluffiest towels and since I buy black ones, I want the color to last and these do. They are kinda pricey (10) per bath towel but well worth it to me. I tried shopping at other stores but could never find the same quality. I think Target is a nice store, much nicer than Walmart and I never noticed any smell. On the other hand, I have noticed a smell in every thrift store I go into, the smell of old fabrics, etc., even our local Goodwill has a funky smell to it.


Su Mama July 19, 2013 at 7:36 pm

Katy’s ma here. I always buy the towels for our guest cottages at Target. They wear like iron. They also occasionally disappear, or get hopelessly stains. But for sheets, it’s the Goodwill As-Is. One set I got there probably five years ago is going strong — tho I blush to admit those sheets are not 100% cotton. (Reese, I think most of us will agree that you do Target right!)


cathy July 19, 2013 at 8:23 am

Of all the big box stores, I like Target the best (though our local Kroger affiliate has a couple of larger stores that decent and also sell all the household and clothing items). I’ve found that the closer I watch my budget, the less I shop–and the less I want to shop.
Interesting pennies-on-the-ground situation this week. My son is taking a class at a funky music/video production studio in a very mixed use neighborhood. Several times, I’ve noticed pennies on the street next to my car. But the funky studio is right across the street from a homeless shelter–and one that houses families. I cannot bring myself to scavenge those pennies when I have so much more than the people “living” in that neighborhood. Now pennies on the ground in the Target parking lot…!


Sarah July 19, 2013 at 1:50 pm

I have a hot cheap curtain tip! Metal electrical conduit works awesome as a rod! $3-5 buys you a 10′ length and a hacksacksaw will trim. For big windows, rods can be so expensive, and a single length of conduit is so much sturdier than those cheap segmented rods. With this method you can re-purpose orphaned brackets, or brackets belonging to rods that are the wrong length.

I just did this in my living room this morning – works great. When I take the rod down to paint the wall I’ll also paint the rod with spray paint.


Ani Mia July 19, 2013 at 3:42 pm

If you have a Tuesday Mornings in Oregon that is where I get cheap curtain rods.
I do love Target, but limit my trips there to limit my temptation.


Marissa July 19, 2013 at 6:00 pm

Completely off the subject of Target. I live in Chesapeake, Virginia. I love your blog also.


dusty July 20, 2013 at 4:26 am

I also thought the same thing when I first started reading today’s blog. We lived there for several years, had a great time, wonderful place to live, lots to do, etc. I miss living in VA.


Vivian July 19, 2013 at 7:03 pm

My sister calls Target, Targét. I have to agree with you Katy. From what I can see there really was nothing cheap at the new Target in Kelowna but then again I’m not much of a consumer anymore so most new retail stores have nothing of interest for me.


dusty July 20, 2013 at 4:27 am

I also call it The Working Girl’s Pier 1.


chris July 20, 2013 at 12:28 am

i’m so glad i’m not the only one who notices smells like that; i can’t imagine what that does to the people who work there!


Diane July 20, 2013 at 4:30 am

I love Target and ours has no odor whatsoever. It’s a place of design inspiration for me.


Pat July 20, 2013 at 7:25 am

Plastic off-gassing? Thanks for giving that weird Target smell a name. It is the biggest reason I rarely shop there.


Bauunny July 21, 2013 at 3:51 pm

When my kids were young, Target was my all time favorite. But now that we are almost empty nesters I get there only once every 2 months or so. That said, it is almost always an enjoyable experience. I have the “red card” so save 5% and get free shipping on-line which has come in handy a few times. I like that it is not “junky” and that there are intelligent employees who can help you find things. I do not shop at Walmart or Kmart and rarely go to the mall. I think Target does what it does well — and I admire that they move their merchandise in and out and it is never junky.


Alison July 22, 2013 at 6:01 am

I find the food smell just as bad or worse at Target and Walmart…hot dogs roasting at 8:30 a.m.? Ugh.


cathy July 22, 2013 at 9:52 am

I agree with Bauunny. But then, it sounds like each Target store is different. The one I go to has a Starbucks, so it’s the smell of coffee, not hot dogs for me. And I’m super sensitive to smells–especially that off-gassing smell. Fortunately, our Target does not have it. That said, I’m still not doing much shopping at all.


Qian Li July 22, 2013 at 12:42 pm

Katy, I definitely identify with your box store shopping experience. By the time I’m out the door I’m exhausted from being marketed at.

I do want to share a series of low-budget home improvements I cobbled together, from a vertical wall garden to pedestal table. Even though it arguably took longer than if I’d gotten a car share and hit a box store, I most enjoyed learning hands-on and wallet-off.


Dmarie June 25, 2023 at 5:29 am

I scored a silver dime in a Coinstar machine yesterday! and thanks, this post made me laugh too, Katy — and took me back to when I shopped Tarjay in person when looking for a particular item rather than searching the internet for what’s in stock before going. ha 😀


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