Friday, 2 August 2013

Fabric Fast Month 8 ~ Happy Mail

Well, I'm past the half way mark of my year long fabric fast, my challenge to myself to not buy any fabric for a year and to sort and use my scraps. I wrote a little while ago of my weariness of this challenge, especially with lots of delicious new fabric lines coming out, but my recent influx of happy mail has well and truely quenched my thirst for opening packages and any lacking I felt about my stash.

I was given the opportunity to write a tutorial for Lily's Quilts using two fat quarter bundles from Abakhan Fabrics. They arrived a couple of days ago and I immediately jumped in and started my fabric book. I'm really enjoying the flat solids and stripes compared to my usual scrappy look.

My next exciting bundle to arrive was a charm pack by Dear Stella, of their Spring 2013 lines. 125 squares of fabric that I don't already own. I have a friend who always buys a fat quarter or charm pack of lines she likes so she can see them in person, whereas I've always bought lots of a few prints. Since quilting more, longing for more variety in my stash, and being surprised by the kinds of prints I end up using all the time, I'm pretty sure my buying habits will be siginficantly different once I start shopping again (thought hopefully not increased!) In this load of prints, I've found plenty that I know I wouldn't have chosen online, but would end up using a lot.

While I was on holidays I found out I won this Collage 10" layer cake from Fabric Bubb! It's so fun! And it gives me my very first newspaper prints. One challenge with my fabric fast is the growing use of low volume and text prints replacing white in my sewing bee. I made sure I stocked up on white before embarking on my fast! But I didn't even think about the others. A year is a long time in the quilting world!

My wall of leaves is growing rapidly following my turn as queen bee in June for Scrappy? Sew Bee it! I love that this is going to be a quilt I could never make on my own. The range of prints and colours is so vast, it's going to have a character all of its own. I love it.

And then finally, a very special one. This half yard bundle of Briar Rose by Heather Ross, arrived a couple of days ago, my birthday gift from my mum. Thank you Mum! It was fun posting a photo on my Facebook page asking whether people would open it immediately or wait a week, till my birthday. I was surprised that most people couldn't have waited, those that would have loved the idea of opening it on the special day, loved the suspense, the ritual. Not being from a very gifty family (we all love that Mum gives us a set amount each year, in our bank account), and being terrible at gift giving myself (at least, the being organised and creative part), those things weren't as important to me as the fun of ripping into the envelope the moment I'd posted the photo, so I could see all these beautiful, happy prints. I will wait to cut into them, but only because I plan to use them for the Penny Sampler!

I do feel so very thankful for these additions to my sunny sewing room. It does feel a little bit like cheating! But I also know it's the encouragement I needed to get to the end of the year. It also feels like a reminder of why I chose this. I definitely love the choosing, the waiting, the receiving, just as much as the making. And I'm sure you can relate that it's much easier to put colours together on a computer screen with a glass of wine after the kids have gone to bed, than to sleepily make my way to my machine! But here I am nearly 8 months later and my buckets of scraps or shelves of fabric don't look significantly depleted. If I feel like I am lacking, it's because of changing trends, not because I'm running out. I am looking forward to that first shop in January 2014, but I hope this has set me on a more sustainable path.


  1. Fantastic Jodi! What a beautiful and colourful encouragement for you! I have enjoyed following your journey on your fabric fast so much I am contemplating *gasp* doing a similar thing with beads next year! I have so much in my stash that I haven't touched...might help challenge my creativity too :) I'll let you know if I take up the challenge!

  2. Being new to your blog, I didn't realise that you had been fabric fasting. How very restrained of you! I'm not sure that I could do it, although I really do have enough fabric here to last me quite a while. I absolutely love your leaf piecing, the colours look amazing together. Can't wait to see it all finished.

  3. Thanks for this update on your fast, Jodi. It's amazing that you feel you still have lots of fabric available. As a side note, I had noticed that I don't have any cool yellows, so I went online and filled up a shopping cart. I also added in a rebuy of 2 favorite prints and a green that looked good. After sleeping on it for TWO DAYS I finally realized that I'm OK with not having a cool yellow. I'll just be creative with what I do have. I told myself I can make so many gorgeous quilts without a cool yellow. LOL. So, you must be rubbing off on me =)

  4. I'm so excited that you got such wonderful surprises in the mail -- especially that Briar Rose. Isn't it beautiful?!

  5. Good for you to have a few new fabrics to play with and mix in with your stash! I've been trying to work mostly from my stash for the last couple years (although I do buy a bit here and there) and it is amazing what you can come up with, but also what you use up. I have definitely tried to be more creative with the colors I put together and doing different things, but we do have our favorite ways don't we? Good luck making it through the rest of the year. Big kudos to you for sticking with it.:)

  6. What an interesting experiment this has been! I like your thoughtful reflections on buying habits, and have noticed similar trends in my fabric collecting over the years. I have been feeling lately like I have so much on my shelves that needs to be used, but I still like looking online. My buying has slowed significantly though-just still browsing!

  7. Your quilt is going to be so fabulous! Happy to be a small part of it.

  8. I'm glad you've gotten to cheat a little!

    I could use a bolt of each of those stripes! Love them.


I so love your comments! I read all of them and reply when I can. If you don't hear back, I'm lost under a mound of scraps or outside jumping on the trampoline with the kids. Jodi. xx