My last post was kind of a heavy one, and I am DETERMINED not to end up with another massive gas bill next spring. Therefore…
Make your own draught-excluders. I just made one this weekend out of bits and pieces of fabric I had floating around the house. You can even just make one with one leg from a pair of old tights, knotted at both ends.
Dance wildly in your living room. If you’re too embarrassed to dance wildly, get on Youtube and find a tutorial for actual dance steps. Charleston is a nice easy one.
Support your local library. They need you! They (hopefully) also have central heating! That you don’t have to pay for! Some even have coffee shops in them!
Ditch your car. It too is expensive. Go for a brisk walk / run / cycle.
Sorry to get all Gala Darling on your ass, but… go through your clothing. Dig out all your thick socks, long sleeved shirts, sweaters, scarves. Practice putting together pratical outfits that make good use of layering! My current fav: layer one is leggings, thin skirt, long-sleeved top. layer two is a frock, layer three is a cardigan and a wooly scarf…
…you could totally take this concept to the extreme. Make a video of you trying on every t shirt you own.
Volunteer. Charity shops always need more folk in the run-up to Christmas, as do The Samaritans, homeless shelters, animal shelters and most other charitable organisations. You get to be in a warm place, give back a little something to society and it looks fantastic on your CV.
Have a campfire. Why do people think this is a summer-only thing?
Quit chucking things away. Paper, envelopes, magazines, cardboard, wood, and even some food waste can be burned on your aforementioned campfire. If campfires aren’t your thing, get this stuff put on Freecycle — other people are trying to heat their houses, and anyone with a multifuel stove would probably be happy with the free kindling! Anything made of fabric can be used to sew curtains or a quilt, or stuff a DIY draught excluder. You should also take up mending things. There really is no excuse to chuck away a jumper that has a hole in it when you can learn how to darn in minutes. The internet can help you fix pretty much anything.
Go vegetarian, or even better, vegan. Your carbon footprint will shrink dramatically, and I bet you any money the amount of energy you use to prepare food will also decrease.
Do as much of your daily work as you can in bed. This is your excuse. Take it! Grasp it with both hands!
Did you know that November is not only Movember (keeping your upper lip warm while raising money for charity!), but also No Shave November. If, for you, No Shave November is not just ‘business as usual, then,’ November, consider it! Cultivate your own cosy fur!
Move your furniture around. If you’ve got stuff in front of your radiators, the stuff will soak up the heat they give off.
Drink water. Hydrating yourself helps circulation which keeps you warm. True.
Build a blanket fort. I just Googled this and it actually does appear on some energy-saving websites as a genuine way to save on heating bills! It’s also lots and lots of fun to do. I am a veteran blanket-fort maker and always try and out-do my last effort.
Adopt a kitty. They’re like tiny cute hot water bottles.
According to this website, “turning your thermostat down just one degree can cut your energy consumption (and your bills) by 10%.”
Buy some ugly-but-thick curtains from your local thrift shop… if they’re too ugly you can always use them to line your existing curtains (NB: as long as they’re long enough, curtains beat blinds hands down for keeping out draughts).
Find a coffee shop that does free refills. Grab a book. Go there.
My gran used to swear by shrink-wrap window insulating film…
…you can also insulate your windows with bubble wrap! I plan to do this in my spare room, where barely anyone ever goes anyway.
Take a long bus-ride. If Lothian Buses are anything to go by, buses are always toasty warm, and there are plenty of good people-watching opportunities to be seized!
Candles. Seriously. When I lived in a one-room, totally-unheated studio I used to light a ton of candles and they’d actually heat the place.
Did you know you lose the most body heat from your head and feet? Therefore you need: a) good slippers and b) a wooly hat. I hear your local thrift shop calling.
Take inspiration from Cat and learn to crochet.
Apparently, this stuff really works.
Get a hula hoop. Choose carefully. Now challenge yourself. Learning tricks and improving is addictive and it most definitely keeps you warm!
I recently discovered that leggings are magical. I have always loathed and cursed tights with their terrible rip/ladder/hole tendencies and their stupid uncomfortableness. I also, until recently, shunned leggings because people say mean shit about those who wear them. However, I have finally got hip to the legging groove and oh my goodness: they are super thick, warm, comfy and you can get ones that make your legs look like Marc Bolan. Everyone should get on this: menz included.
Door sweeps are pretty bargainous.
& finally, I’ve heard that putting chili powder or cayenne pepper in your socks makes your feet warm. Anyone want to try and report back?!
You can also visit Read This Press for poetry and typewriter paraphernalia! Alternatively, check out Edinburgh Vintage, our sister site. If you want to get in touch you can follow OneNightStanzas on Twitter, or email claire[at]onenightstanzas.com. I reply as swiftly as I can!