Thursday, January 17, 2013

My Old Addiction

This stuff is like heroin to me

When I read the words "Italian Silk-Cotton Blend", I was filled with that acquisitive desire known to fellow fabric... enthusiasts.
Like an AA member who still walks by liquor stores, I regularly look at fabric  I read about sewing and quilting. Occasionally, I even sew things. But my main passion is collecting fabric  That I have many lovely pieces already is not the point. I am always interested in having more. I have tried to be rational about this. But as any addict/collector/hoarder knows, these things are not rational.
I went for a four year period in which I did not buy ANY fabric at all. Last year, I bought some lovely pieces on my birthday. Of course I have not made anything out of them yet...they're Too Nice.
When my daughter asked me what my New Year's resolutions were, I told her I'd have to think about it. Then when I was working on a fabric banner for our Christmas Party, the Resolution presented itself to me, as J.K. Rowling says, "with the force of a stampeding troll": No Saving
I was selecting the background fabric from my Christmas Fabric Collection. I found the perfect one - white with silver stars. I am ashamed to admit that I then thought, "this is too nice, I'd better save it." and then my rational brain spoke up and said, actually yelled: SAVE IT FOR WHAT!!! 
Yes, reader, I used it. What was I saving it for, but to use for our family celebrations? Then I realized: THAT was my resolution: NO SAVING. Don't I deserve to use all of my nice things? My daughter doesn't sew. When I am gone, this stuff I have "Saved" will all be donated to a worthy cause (I hope) so I'd better enjoy it now.
I couldn't decide what lovely piece I wanted to sacrifice on the altar of No Saving, so I decided to use up all my my small scraps in a scrap quilt. Part of my Saving Problem is that I will save Scraps Too Small To Be Saved. And I noticed yesterday that giving up "saving" isn't going to be easy. I'm happily taking sewing breaks, making little scrappy log cabins and courthouse steps blocks, and I caught myself thinking, "This scrap is too pretty to use now, I'll save it for something else". I made myself use it.
What are your sewing resolutions? I'm NOT Saving. I am recklessly using the good stuff, and trying to UN-hoard. It's a constant battle, because my first impulse is to save. But I guess all resolutions are like that, amirite?

p.s. My collecting habit isn't just manifested in humans. My little cat, Miss Etta, has a collection too. Every day, she drags these three things out from my sewing room into a special spot in the living room. When Mr. Hunting Creek puts them back, she fetches them again.

I snapped a quick picture on my iPhone: they are a little lambswool duster that I use to clean computer screens, a bag of wool felt scraps, and a package of Angelina Fibers.The bag of wool felt scraps is bigger than she is, but she loves it and drags it back every day. It's pretty bad when your cats start hoarding too.


badmomgoodmom said...

I have that problem, too.

Iris shamed me into making her a cotton/rayon blend blouse. Had I purchased the fabric for myself, I would have been intimidated to cut into it. But, she kept bugging me to make the blouse; it was sewn up w/in a week of coming in the house.

She wears it every week. It held up to wear and machine-laundering. Machine wash, short run in the dryer followed by hang-drying. What was I afraid of? I'm going to sew my own cotton/silk blouses next.

Venus de Hilo said...

House rule around here for the felines is "no toy shopping in the sewing room." Frequently broken. Should inspire me to put things away more, but doesn't.

Online window shopping is confined to high-end garment fabric, which I can't afford and have no use for, but love dreaming about. Maybe someday...

Pulled a lovely fabric for a quilt back the other day, and then realized I'd rather make a dress from it. All that has accomplished is to move it from quilt stash to garment stash. No clue when making said dress might actually happen.

MTVA said...

When I read this, I was sure you were writing about me! It's especially bad, because I'm hoping to move this year, and I read in a blog (maybe here?) how much weight those totes of fabric are! Let's all keep using it up this year!

Sufiya H. said...

F'r godsake do be careful about sewing thread around cats; they DO like to EAT it sometimes and can die a most PAINFUL death thereby by having the thread tangle around their intestines! I warn all sewers with cats about own cat managed to eat a thread WITH A NEEDLE ON IT and survive (I found the crap in the litter box with the needle and thread embedded in it; fortunately it went through 'backwards"!)but many cats are not so lucky! Do be careful about leaving your pincushions with threaded needles stuck in them out and about; I'm pretty sure this is how my cat got access to the threaded needle!

On a more cheerful note; I think cats like the smell of wool or something; my cat also loves to drag around the lambswool duster; it's hilarious! Also, a peculiarity of Siamese cats is that they will EAT wool; I remember my mother telling me that once my grandfather's big Siamese cat Chow, once ate a sock that was hanging out of the sock drawer; all that was left was the bit of sock still inside the drawer!