The Purple Dress

Vicky’s recent post brought to mind The Purple Dress!

Once upon a time, I bought clothes and shoes and purses like I’ve been buying fabric. My husband and I both worked (and had no children at that time) and shopping for clothes was my main hobby. My favorite shop would hold the new things that came in til I saw them. My lunch hours were spent running to the dress shop, trying on clothes, finding the perfect shoes and ear rings to match, running back to work and realizing I hadn’t even eaten. Oh well . . what was more important than clothes?

There was once a purple dress . . this was probably in the 1983 – 1985 time frame. I went to Joseph’s and Sandy had pulled some clothes for me to try on. I fell in love with a purple dress but I had kinda been thinking that I had too many clothes and I should stop spending so much. It was getting to the ridiculous point in my closet. I remember standing there thinking what a perfect fit (size 3 probably! Ugh . . I don’t think I could ever get to that size again!) but I talked myself out of it. The next day I had decided that I couldn’t live without that purple dress so I went back to get it and . . it was gone! Yes, I’m still carrying the burden of having missed that dress! 🙂

To this day, when I’m shopping and I see something I want but know I don’t need, my test on whether to get it or not to get it is “Will I be sorry if I do not get it now and can’t get it later?” I honestly can’t think of another time when I didn’t get something and have always wished that I had. For the Holly Jolly fabric this year, I might have felt that way had I not gotten it. It makes me smile (and I’ll smile more when I finish something with it!) and that would have been worth it although I think I can say with certainty (hows that for being definite?) that I will not buy anything to go into the stash and sit. If I should buy something (and I don’t think I will), I’m going to come home and make it . . nothing is getting added to the stash.

For our stash busting efforts, this isn’t like some addictions where if you slip up once, you’re in big trouble. Just think about what you’re doing! If you weigh it all out and decide you must buy fabric, a kit, a BOM, . . do it. Just be sure you’re buying because it is something you can’t live without and don’t do impulse buying!

No matter how we go about our stash busting efforts, we need to keep it fun! We need to keep challenging ourselves to meet our goals but we really can’t feel like we’re torturing ourselves by missing out on something that we’re always going to look back on and wish we had bought.

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  1. 1

    Anonymous says

    I’m really behind on reading! 20 some years ago, I was just beginning counted cross stitch. I saw a chart for a fisherman; I loved it but thought ‘way too hard for me’. Within two weeks, I knew it would NOT be too difficult. I went back; it was not there and no one remembered it! It nearly broke my heart as it would have been perfect for DH. When I got into quilting, I remembered and would not let that happen with fabric, patterns, books, etc. Boy am I in trouble now! I have outgrown one room and working on the second; I will try to do some stash bustin’!
    Donna in KS

  2. 2

    Suze says

    I regret more the things I have bought than the things I did not get.

    And I just placed an order at Thousands of Bolts.

  3. 3

    Vicky says

    Oh, geez, Judy! Now I’m going to ask myself that every time I pick up something in a quilt shop! LOL

    But I’m okay since you said I can’t buy anything else until 2009! 🙂 🙂

  4. 4

    kathysews says

    Ok, this is getting my attention. I roamed around Joann’s for a while today, needed supplies for the confirmation class at church to decorate stockings this afternoon. Had a picture in my head of a dress from the Coldwater Creek catalog, fingered a lot of fabric thinking I could make it for my work Christmas party. Left with ONLY craft supplies. I got out of my cabinet a couple yards of nice black stretch velvet and some pretty peacock blue taffeta, and it will just have to do. More money to spend on my family!

  5. 5

    peggy says

    I don’t have a blog, so I can’t be part of the stash busting in the truest sense, but I have taken the idea to heart. I could make, I hate to admit it, dozens of projects before I NEED fabric. Maybe this will get me going on some projects I really liked when I bought all that fabric. Thanks for the motivation.

  6. 6

    Anonymous says

    Great timing with this story as I had already planned a trip to the quilt shop tomorrow and will keep your advice in mind. (there goes the budget!)