Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Fabric Rehab

My children told me that I had a problem, but I denied it. "I'm not an addict!", I claimed. "I collect fabric and patterns, that's all. I like to sew. It's my hobby."
"Then why is it called a STASH?" they wanted to know. Good question. Like all addicts, I live in denial. Even though I have over a thousand patterns, (my personal patterns, not even counting the ones I sell on my website) I am always looking for the new ones. I check out my favorite fabric websites every day. Because you just never know. That next pattern, that new fabric might be THE ONE.
I inherited my fabriholic tendencies from my mother.(She was quite a collector of more than just fabric. I think this behavior is genetic.) We used to visit the Fabric Warehouse in Anaheim and Newport Beach just to see what they had. No projects in mind. Just looking. We'd come home with huge bags of treasures. For many years my fabric acquisition was under control because after we moved to Virginia, there was no local source for the designer fabrics I craved. I took up quilting... until one day I found the Pattern Review website. It was as if an alcoholic got a job at a brewery. It was like finding the source of the Nile, fabric-wise! I could buy fabric ONLINE! Things got so bad that once Linda at Emmaonesock called to ask if I wanted the goods shipped in a plain brown wrapper, so my husband wouldn't notice. (I THINK she was kidding.) Yeah, I'm on a first name basis with my pushers...er...textile purveyors. While we were talking she said that her customers sometimes ask her to ship to next door neighbors, hold fabric for later shipping, ship to offices...so that no one at home knows! What kind of behavior does THAT sound like, class? True confession: I have even accidentally bought pieces of the same fabric twice because I had forgotten I had already bought some. This is NOT sane behavior. I've tried to reform, really I have. I donated some fabric that I would never use to charity. I donated supplies to our neighborhood silent auction, to raise money for a new playground. It's July, and I haven't bought any fabric or patterns for FOUR months! I told my son that I was cured, and he said, "No Mom, you can never be cured. Once an addict, always an addict." Isn't it awful what they teach our kids in school these days?


The Slapdash Sewist said...

Oh my goodness, I love your precocious son's comments! I can truly relate to this:

"Because you just never know. That next pattern, that new fabric might be THE ONE."

I had a blinding flash of the obvious within the past year or so that there will never be on platonic ideal single item that will "complete" my wardrobe and make it so I never need new clothes again and I need to just approach my projects as fun instead of crucial and fraught. I am trying to develop the same attitude toward stash, but it is hard!

Nancy W. said...

OMG! I couldn't help laughing while reading your post. My husband is asking me what I'm laughing at. When I told him, he said, "Tell her not to worry. She will see you at rehab with her!"
I never watch TV, but happened to see a "clean house" episode the other day with a lady that was a terribls shop-a-holic. I have to admit it reminded me (remotely, I tell myself) of my fabric buying.
Good job on the 4 months!