Monday, July 27, 2009

Fabric: Gotta Have More vs. Contentment

Recently a member of the Stashbuster group asked about our stashes of fabric: If you have more, do you want more? As you bust that stash, do you find that you are happier with what you have?

In the past, I was an avid collector of fabric, buying because I liked a print, with no clue what I would use it for. I even went through a period where I bought fat quarters and half yards of fabric on a color of the month basis. I built quite a nice stash that way.

A few years ago I went through a drastic life change, and my need to budget came into play in a big way. These days I usually buy for specific projects, shortly before I begin to work on them. I try to shop my stash first, but I don't feel guilty about picking up new fabrics to supplement a project. Sometimes I amaze myself that I am able to leave a quilt shop or fabric store empty handed. What a change!

Over the past few years I've pared down my stash significantly by giving away fabric. I moved from a big three-bedroom house to a small condo, and I don't have much room for storage. Periodically I'll go through my stash and let go of fabric I don't care for or have grown tired of. I give my castoffs to organizations that make charity quilts. I figure they will take what I don't want and make beautiful quilts for people to love.

People donate fabric to me, as well, bringing in waves of new possibilities. While some of the donated fabric goes into my regular stash, much of it is set aside to make quilts for my favorite charity.

With my existing stash, donated fabrics included, I think it will be a few years before I'll feel that my fabric inventory is inadequate. I guess at this point I lean more to the contentment side of the scale. For now, anyway, I have plenty of fabric, and I don't crave for more.

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