I’ve been holding out on you, probably because if I put it in writing, that makes it official. No turning back. No changing my mind. Here’s the scoop:
On September 30, I was at my annual quilt retreat with a group of long-time quilting buddies. (I’ve mentioned my retreat friends to you over the years, and wrote about them in depth a few years ago.) Anyway, I was seated near my mom, my friend Sylvia, and Sylvia’s sister-in-law Cheryl. As we were busy sewing (and Mom was scrapbooking), I made the mistake of “thinking out loud.” My fate was sealed.
Taunja: “You know, as I was getting organized for retreat, I realized I have so much fabric and so many patterns and books that I could sew for a year and not need to buy any new fabric.”
Sylvia: “I could probably sew for 2 or 3 years with the fabric I have at home.”
Taunja: “I’m serious. I think I might do it.”
Sylvia, “I’m in. We’re doing this starting tomorrow, October 1. No new fabric purchases for one year.”
The conversation continued enthusiastically, but I’m sure there was trepidation in our voices as we laid out our plan. After some discussion, Sylvia and I decided that since our home stockpiles include mostly scraps, precuts and a few kits, we are allowed to purchase background and backing fabric. There was a little gray area regarding sashing and binding fabric, since we technically could go scrappy with both of those. But we decided we will contact each other first for approval on any sashing and binding fabric purchases.
My mom and Cheryl were witnesses to this crazy pact, and they seemed to enjoy spurring us on. Truth be told, I’m not sure if either one of them thinks Sylvia and I have the stamina to succeed!
It is now near the end of October, and I have been a good girl so far, as has Sylvia.
To keep myself honest, I’m recording what I have on hand in my sewing closet. If you catch me sewing anything other than what is on this list between now and October 1, 2022, be sure to call me out!
First off, I have the project I started at retreat: A Christmas version of Thimble Blossoms’ Takes the Cake pattern, featuring mostly Sweetwater fabrics. This project should keep me busy for a while!
I also have the following lovelies:
- Mountainside quilt kit featuring Smoke & Rust (Lella Boutique)
- Tis the Season quilt kit featuring The Christmas Card (Sweetwater)
- Fresh Cottons jelly roll (Fig Tree) that a friend gave me four years ago
- Sweet Tea jelly roll (Sweetwater) that I’ve been saving for a couple years
- Christmas Morning fat quarter bundle (Lella Boutique)
- Yulietide Gatherings flannel layer cake (Primitive Gatherings)
- Several flannel fat quarters and scraps (Primitive Gatherings) from other projects I made this year (Luke’s Hometime quilt, Brad’s quilt and Adam’s Harmony quilt).
- Peace on Earth panel (Lella Boutique) and coordinating Chenille-It kit (in the drawer below). I can’t wait to give that a try!
- Several loose Christmas fat quarters and scraps from Gingiber, Sweetwater, Lella Boutique and Holly Taylor, including two big Gingiber panels with her signature moose, deer, polar bear and penguin characters. There are probably a few prints by other designers as well. This is a wonderful mashup of fabrics, isn’t it?
- A basket full of fat quarters and yardage I’ve been saving for future baby quilts. This includes cheerful prints from Moda, Michael Miller, Pam Kitty Morning and Riley Blake. I even found two new Lola Dutch children’s books I tucked away for gifts! Kennth and Sara Jane Wright are the creators of the Lola Dutch series, and Sarah Jane also designs darling fabric for Michael Miller.
- My project basket for making Halloween Economy Blocks.
- Lots of saved scraps, fat quarters and yardage from recent projects. If it’s pretty, don’t throw it out!
As I’m sharing all of this with you, I’m a bit embarrassed by my abundance of pretty fabric. But I also feel re-inspired to sew from my stash. It will be hard to resist purchasing the next shiny new fabric collection to hit the stores, but I can do it. I think it will be good for me.
Don’t worry about the local economy. We will still need to purchase thread, batting and other sewing incidentals, as well as the services of longarm quilters. And don’t worry about our mental wellbeing during the next 12 months. Sylvia and I have already decided that come next October, if we are successful, we will celebrate our scrimping . . . with a huge fabric shopping spree. Wish us luck!