I Wouldn't Say 'Excuse' Per Se
Get ready for the biggest revelation of my quilting career. Drum roll, please.... I have I have invented a new and thrilling way of building your stash, particularly when said stash is supposedly not being built due to non-fabric-appreciating members of your household having issues with cost. (Cost! The nerve!). The above delictable array of pink, turquoise and chocolate quilting fabrics are a testimony to both it's surprising delight and sheer effectiveness. I call it, "Teach A Friend To Quilt." It's very simple, and you can do this in nine easy steps: 1) Find a friend who has expressed a desire to learn to quilt. 2) Offer to teach them, using your generous spirit and a selection of handy beginner level patterns such as you might find here on Cottage Magpie (more on that soon). 3) While assisting them in their pattern and color choices, show them your own pretty, color-coordinated fabric stash and explain to them (in a loving, gentle way), that the best quilts are filled with a myriad of fabrics; a sheer celebration of colors and patterns, a joyful cacophony of fabric love. Tell them (with restrained disapproval) that quilts with only one or two fabrics are just *so* early 90's, and they really just don't want to go there. Note: If your friend is gravitating towards antique reproductions that call for blue & white or red & white or some other totally-awesome-yet-requiring-only-two-fabrics color scheme, explain that while these quilts are absolutely gorgeous that these patterns are just too difficult for the novice quilter. It helps to say this with conviction. 4) Explain to them that while you are absolutely positive that they are going to love quilting as much as you do, that you'd hate to see them makie a huge investment in fabric when they've not yet tried it and can't be one-hundred-and-fifty-percent certain that they'll want to stick with it. Offer to buy their fabric if they let you have all the leftovers for your stash. They will likely say yes. (Another) Note: Another option would be to have them buy the fabric and give you the leftovers in return for helping them make their first quilt. I wasn't quite ballsy enough to try that one. 5) Before the starting-a-new-quilt buzz wears off, whisk friend to local quilt shop to select a cornucopia of fabulous fabrics. With your friend gathering bolts and you guarding the selection at the cutting table, enjoy the mildly euphoric ecstasy as the gorgeous colors and patterns pile up on the cutting table. Humming to yourself and swaying slowly, wind the breathtaking swaths around you. Sink into the folds of the many bolts of goodness as you... Oh. Sorry. Ahem. 6) Once the fabrics are back to your place (make sure they come back to your place), assure your friend that you will help them measure and cut all the pieces after you have washed and pressed and lovingly folded them (using Monica's expert tutorial), preparing them for their inclusion in their masterpeice. Especially since they do not yet have their own cutting mat, rotary cutter and other quilting paraphernalia, they will need to come cut with you at your house. 7) When spouse, partner or other non-fabric-lover in your household complains about this addition to your supposedly "frozen" fabric collection, explain haughtily that you didn't buy it for yourself, but instead are doing a community service by helping poor Sally-who-doesn't-have-two-dimes-to-rub-together learn to quilt. The poor dear. Sigh and shake your head with long-suffering patience at their lack of humble generosity. The fact that poor Sally has a yard service and a Mercedes is not necessarily an important thing to share at this exact moment. 8) If your friend should be sufficiently motivated to actually cut her fabrics, help her to do so, making sure that extra yardage (you *did* buy extra, of course, against shrinkage) returns to your grateful stash. 9) In between giving your friend good advice on how to actually piece and quilt their new project, find another friend, or barring that an acquaintence, babysitter or random vagrant and repeat. (Yet Another) Note: I am NOT suggesting that you actually keep your friend from using their fabrics, of course. That would be unquilterly. Just that there's no point in them being stored in the back of their bureau if they never get around to using them. Not when they could be stored in the back of your bureau! Or even better, with your stash.