There is a saying in the world of sewing - "She who dies with the most fabric wins."
It should probably read - "She who buys the most fabric ends up in the poor house."
It's confession time peeps.
I spend WAAAAY too much on fabric.
Seriously...it's a problem. I'm not saying we're about to be on the street by any means, or that I'm hiding bills from my husband. It's not that bad at all. But, still. It's a problem.
|This is just a teeny tiny glimpse. Seriously teeny tiny.|
It all started innocently enough. Trying to build a bit of a stash so I had fabrics on hand when I needed something. But, then as project ideas would arise I would find that the fabrics in my stash wouldn't work. So I'd buy what would work, plus a few cute extras. Eventually the cute extras became what I was buying. Then I found designers that I loved. I "need" their fabrics of course, right? Right. And then I'd see a project I liked heavily influenced by their fabric choice so I'd buy similar fabric to put my own twist on the quilt, but I never seem to get around to those projects. Then I buy the cute prints that I think I'll use to make things for my kids. But, I never seem to get around to those either. And before you know it...the pile grows and grows. And this is just fabric...don't forget it takes needles, thread, batting, etc. to make a quilt.
Sewing/quilting is my therapy. We all need something to keep us sane after a long work day. I am a Stay at Home Mom, and while I love my kids, as any mom knows, they can also be a handful. Some days I crave time with that sewing machine so I can get inside my own head for some quiet time. And just like I crave sewing, I also crave contact with other grown ups. I think the quilt shop has become my haven for grown up chatter. I love those ladies. They're sweet, genuine, helpful, understanding. I just find quilters to be a group of loving and supportive people. But, of course, while you're chatting, you're shopping. And spending.
Finally my husband and I talked about my spending. You see, in our house, he's in charge of the budget. So, to be completely honest, I really had no idea how much I was spending. He wasn't really giving me a number on how much I was overspending and I didn't want to ask, because that would make it real. We tried giving me a lump sum of cash for several areas of the family budget. But, that didn't work because some things I had to use credit card to receive a discount, or something on the receipt was a gift so I didn't want to use my cash, etc. And before I knew it I was overspending again.
For a while we gave up on that. He offered to open a checking account for my craft spending, but he wasn't getting around to that. He's so busy, and he shouldn't have to. He's actually very supportive of my craft habit. (His mother is a quilter as well.) But, that can also be a problem. Both of us can often take it lightly which is another reason I had no grasp of how I was getting out of control. (Of course this is all relative.)
I realized I needed to know how much I was spending. But, not just a number thrown out by my husband. I needed to keep track myself. To be responsible. I spoke with my husband and we agreed on a monthly budgeted amount. A number. The number took negotiating and it was also based partially on how much it costs to make a quilt.
I got a tiny little notebook to record my spending in. In this notebook I keep the receipts and I record the date, store, items bought, and money spent. Each month has a page.
It didn't take long for me to see that I had a problem. When Tula's new line came out I was WAY over my monthly budget. (I needed that line...because, you know...they might run out! Please don't judge me too harshly.) So, I talked to my husband, and he said that he didn't care if I spent the entire year's worth of money all at once. But, once I spent it, that was it for the year.
Phew! I felt better. So then I needed a 12.5" square ruler. And then...and then.... You get the idea, right? Last night I was writing things down in my little notebook. And I realized. I've spent into OCTOBER!!!!!
(I repeated it just in case you were in shock and couldn't believe it either.) See...I have a problem. And it smacked me in the face as I realized it.
I won't lie...I felt like asking my husband if I can just start over. Pretend like I didn't spend the money I spent. But, that's not how the real world works. And if I'm going to teach my kids how to be responsible with money...I better start with myself. So, I hope to keep you posted on my road to recovery. I have already deemed 2013 the year of "The Stash." :) As in...I will work as much as possible from my stash instead of buying tons of new stuff for each quilt. This should also help me tackle a bunch of quilts on my to do list.
Why am I blogging about this? So I can be honest with myself and you. To hold myself accountable. And in hopes that, if there is someone else out there with a similar problem maybe they can realize they're not alone.
I'll keep you posted! Maybe I can blog when I feel like buying. :)
Sew long for now,