Me & My Money: Ciara Jordan, owner of Amour Design

‘Best value I ever got was my first mixing drill when I finished my apprenticeship’

Ciara Jordan, owner of Amour Design: “I’ll nearly always haggle; I get it from my dad.”

Ciara Jordan, owner of Amour Design: “I’ll nearly always haggle; I get it from my dad.”


Are you a saver or a spender?

I’m a spender – I make money and I spend it. I’m not reckless, but always seem to have a project on the go that eats money. At the moment we’re building, so saving just isn’t an option right now.

Do you shop around for better value?

Sometimes I do, it depends on the product and how much time I have on my hands. I like to get good value, but I’m not a penny pincher. I wouldn’t lose sleep at night for paying an extra cent per litre for my diesel.

What has been your most extravagant purchase and how much did it cost?

My most extravagant purchase ever was a pair of horsehair boots from Karen Millen that cost €450. I’m not usually extravagant when it comes to fashion.

What purchase have you made that you consider the best value for money?

The best value I ever got was my first mixing drill when I finished my apprenticeship as a tiler. After my wonderful boss had me mix by hand for four years, I was turning out buckets of adhesive like I was baking cakes for Bewley’s. I think it cost me around €200.

How do you prefer to shop – online or local?

I’m almost allergic to technology and only use it when I must. I love face-to-face interaction, and feel very strongly about supporting local businesses. I do all my personal shopping locally, and will use local tradesmen when possible.

Do you haggle over prices?

I’ll nearly always haggle; I get it from my dad. I have memories of standing there red-faced beside him on many occasions. He would always bargain for the best deal, and now I have that brass neck. If you don’t ask you don’t get.

Has the recession changed your spending habits?

I don’t do recessions. If I had no work on, I would work for €50 a day, or for nothing. The only time I recall having no work on, I painted my sister’s apartment for free. I ended up getting two more jobs from it by the people I ran into in the paint shop. Work doesn’t come knocking on your door – you have to get out there and make it happen.

Do you invest in shares?

Only once, and I lost money so I haven’t invested since.

Cash or card?

Card mostly, so I can keep track of any transactions. I’ll always try to have cash in my pocket on a night out, but otherwise I use cards.

What was the last thing you bought and was it good value for money?

The last thing I bought was our food shopping today, so yes, food is number one in my family. We love our grub, and my motto is if you have food on the table and a good bottle of wine on hand, then life is good.

Have you ever successfully saved up for a relatively big purchase?

Yes, I have, plenty of times. I hate any loans that aren’t needed. I saved up for my current Jeep, and bought it for myself when pregnant with my first child and couldn’t travel. My husband was overseas, so I texted him a photo of my present to myself!

Have you ever lost money?

I’m sure I’ve dropped the odd €5 out of my pocket here or there, but no, nothing significant.

Are you a gambler and if so have you ever had a big win?

I’m not now, but I did have a go at gambling on football back in my 20s when I lived with a group of lads. I think I won enough for a leg of lamb and a decent bottle of red.

Is money important to you?

Money comes and goes in life, it’s a necessity. I’m ambitious, work hard and buzz on making money like anyone would, but it’s completely unimportant. A happy marriage and healthy children are important to me.

How much money do you have on you now?

I’d say I have about €250 in my wallet, of which €200 I owe to my upholsterer!

In conversation with Tony Clayton-Lea