I'm exactly the same way, and I'm pretty proud that I have pretty plush surroundings and not a single credit card. My wife has a macy's card but I don't even have a store card, because I just wait for a good deal that I can afford out of pocket. And, like you, I pay more for quality when needed... It's maddening that that's seen as cheap, it's just smart.I'm the same way and I've gotten crap about it before. I like to research any major purchase extensively. I consider getting a good deal on something a bit of a hobby of mine. I think people mistake it for being cheap because I don't just buy things on the spot without thinking about it. My ex called me cheap all the time even though I spend way more money than her. Just embrace it, screw what anyone else thinks.
An example would be my TV. I knew I wanted a TV but it would be a while before I could afford it or had a place of my own for it. So I spent about 6 months researching TVs and watching deals. I could have picked up a decent Samsung LCD or Costco Vizio for a good deal like my girlfriend would have, but I didn't. Instead I waited for the perfect time and picked up a Pioneer KRP-500m for $2000 shipped with a stand. So in the end I spent way more money than most would have, but I feel I got a better deal.