Tuesday, April 1, 2014

the newest expected arrival

 march 26th, 26 days - that's how long i went this month before a legitimate need arose for some fabric purchasing. my friend venessa and i settled our duel over d2's girl baby quilt at the church auction with me promising to make her an identical quilt for her highest bid; proceeds going to the fundraiser, of course.

i assured her that i had all the same fabrics at home only to return home and find out i did not. i was shy the green and pink dot fabric. there was a moment of panic because this is an old "nicey jane" print and those are getting hard to come by. however, an etsy search found me what i needed - on sale, even. i got a little more of the "picnic bouquet" in pink just to make sure there was enough of that, too. so now i have what i need to make an identical quilt. only i'm going to use a green dot fabric for the back and the stripe for binding because i just think it'll look better.

i really and truly did not want to make this purchase. i was feeling so good about getting all the way through one whole month, especially after my disastrous february free-for-all. but it was absolutely necessary. the quilt's already been paid for, for cryin' out loud! i was sorely tempted to wait until april first just to say i had gone a whole month, but didn't want to risk it. (oh, me of little faith.)

oh, and while i was at it, i may have dropped a few scraps of heather bailey prints in my cart, too. maybe. scraps! heather bailey! yeah, i caved. but only just the tiniest bit. i'm dreaming up a project just for these bits already.

so i pretty much went the entire month without any purchases at all. one allowable exception is pretty good. it's not the squeaky clean record i wanted, but it's pretty darn good. especially in in comparison to other months. i can say that on another occasion i completely resisted the urge to purchase and made-do with my on-hand stash. i pulled together everything for d2's baby boy quilt from stash, which was a huge stretch. but it paid off in the end. oh, and i also scrounged for a binding for "way out weston." i didn't think there was anything good in my stash but there was. hurray! that's two victories and one concession. (patting self on back presently.)

rebecca lynne asked for tips for how to stick with the fast:

  • don't look - simply stay away from websites or stores since you're not going to buy anything. why torture yourself? if you don't know what you're missing, you kinda stop missing it so much.
  • media fast - take it one step further and stop looking at sites that are going to feature new product or that are heavy on hype. i found myself frustrated when seeing all the cool new ideas out there (which are eternally endless) because it fed my desire to "try that, too." stop being inspired and do what you wanted to do last week/month/year.
  • be a homebody - not only did i stop visiting the interwebby so much, i stopped posting so much myself. by spending less time ogling all the great ideas on the computer, i made more time to actually make stuff at home. and focusing more on actually making stuff rather than trying to document or share it constantly helped me buckle down on quilting chores i wasn't excited about.
  • focus on current projects and wips - my biggest pitfall seems to be the need to round out what i have on hand when i start something new. there are so many things laying around here, begging to be finished that there is no need to start anything else. yes, it's thrilling! yes, i adore new projects and am burning to cut into my to-do list in my head. but continually starting and never finishing anything just makes for piles and piles everywhere. none of the half-finished piles are what i had in mind when i got inspired or invested in the project at the beginning.
  • fall in love again - i find it helpful to look over the stash i already have, remember the projects i was so excited to make just a little while ago. it gets me excited all over again and i'm less apt to look elsewhere for a fabric thrill.
  • do some antique quilt browsing- this was a surprising help for me and i'll explain more about it in a separate post. let's just say seeing lots of worn and weary, often times unfinished quilts made me stop and think about my pile of wips and the real longevity/value of what i'm creating. it made me question my obsession with producing dozens and dozens of ultimately fleeting and fragile objects, especially at this time in my life.
those all rather blended together, but one item really does lead right into the next. i hope this is helpful to someone else or at least makes someone think.

i've realized i have quite an imagination. it's pretty much bottomless. when i was a little girl, that meant i was always coming up with new games to play or ideas to explore. i thought that part of me had grown up. now it's manifest differently: i can't stop imagining all the brilliant/adorable/cool things i could make. just like i'm tempted to fill my plate too full with all the tantalizing foods at a banquet because my eyes are bigger than my stomach, i fill my to-do list far too full with all the possibilities of what i can do or make. this only leads to stomach aches and mounting messes, not a pleasurable meal or quilts to enjoy. i keep reminding myself that a few awesome quilts wrapped around me are far better than piles of fabric languishing on shelves. (and in boxes, under tables, falling over on table tops, filling up the floor, etc.)

linking up with the march fabriholics anonymous check-in at making rebecca lynne
here's the kicker!!! before writing this post i pulled out the fabrics to get that commissioned baby quilt made only to discover i didn't have enough of the "pocketbook" print, either. all i could find was a cut-into skinny quarter and i need a full fat one for the quilt. darn! etsy rescued me again. it's ordered. i was baffled how this happened since i was certain i had found a nice cut of yardage in my stash last week. however, i cleaned up my sewing area and transported last month's towering purchase pile upstairs and just couldn't find it anywhere. i must have been mistaken. but as i wrote this post, i looked at the photo of the stack for the quilt and there it is! right under the stripe.
one full yard of "pocketbook" in pink
loosing my mind, i tell you. it's completely gone.


  1. Well done you! I like your post. I am having the same WIP problems. It's time to get some finishes, so the remaining WIPS seem exciting, not stressful. I have discovered I like having a few monthly projects, but not too many. This is all supposed to be pleasureable, after all :-)

  2. lol frankly going cold turkey is very very hard
    ( tried it with the gin, big mistake lol !!)
    so an occasional falter, for such genuine reasons, is just nought but a hic cup along the 'turkey' path!
    Besides it proves your human and we love folks with failings like our own!

  3. I'm a big fan of the just-don't-look-at-it philosophy. If I can stay away from the shops/online stores I get over the temptation very quickly. As soon as I start to browse... That add to cart button is too darn handy!
    I really like your point about thinking of the longevity of our quilts. It really is what we're making for. Yes it's the satisfaction of seeing something that was in our heads be in our hands, but it's about making something for next year, and the years after... Quick is all well and good, but I want quality too.
    E xx

  4. I love your tips for sticking to the fast... it's so hard with pretty fabric everywhere!


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