Would you like to know what fabric I actually have left after my huge clear-out last week? Well, I still have plenty of dressmaking fabrics, Liberty lawn and some Oakshotts, but as far as quilting fabrics go, the scraps above are all that I held back. They add up to less than a yard in total. I think that qualifies as my biggest ever seasonally-inappropriate Spring cleaning exercise.
It was an odd experience packaging up the entirety of my quilting fabric stash, but ultimately liberating. It felt like I had fabric stashed away all over the place that had been bought at a time when I had my little shop or very young children to make things for and, no longer having either of those things, the inspiration for using the fabrics seemed to have passed. The awfulness of seeing so much much-loved fabric gathering dust made me feel pained each time I caught sight of it. So despite some of the fabrics being ones I could still have happily sewn with for myself or my children, I had an overwhelming desire to start afresh, so I'm incredibly grateful to all those of you who took away the entire contents of a life's fabric stash in just a few days. It's so lovely knowing that they may now be sewn into lovely things and properly enjoyed.
The last time that I destashed some fabric, a few months later, Mary (who sometimes comments on here as 'Homebird'), wrote and sent a photo of the English paper pieced quilt that she'd made using the bundle of duck egg blue fabrics that she'd bought from me. I hope that Mary won't mind me sharing the photo of her quilt with you here, but it's stayed with me as I felt so delighted that she'd had inspiration where I hadn't seen any and created something beautiful where I hadn't managed to do so. I'm really hoping to catch sight of some more of the lovely fabrics that I've said goodbye to over the coming months.
After a big think and some 'do I even know my own name without all my fabrics around me' thoughts, I started pinning fabrics from all my favourite fabric shops onto a private board on Pinterest (private, because I didn't want to bombard my followers Pinterest feeds with random fabric photos over the course of three hours one evening!). It was such a refreshing thing to do. What emerged was the I was drawn to soft greys, olivey greens, turquoises and mustards, although not necessarily with it in mind to be used all at once. Th prints are also far more geometric and modern than anything I've bought before. I've loved these colours for years, so I'm not sure why I didn't own more of them, as certainly the mustards and greys are shades that feature heavily in my wardrobe.
They arrived at the end of last week and sewing has already commenced - I'll show you what I've been up to soon.
Changing everything all at once like this always reminds me of the lines to a Bruce Springsteen song that I spent a lot of time dancing enthusiastically around the living room to with my father as a very small girl. While Bruce shimmies around the stage looking adorable (and like he really should stay in possession of both his hair and face), he sings dramatically, 'I check my look in the mirror. Want to change my hair, my clothes, my face'. It's like that, but with fabrics. Do you remember that video? I've just re-watched it - it's the one where Bruce Springsteen invites a previously unknown Courtney Cox onto stage to dance with him. If you're not familiar with this song or even the curious fashions in the video, don't judge me, it was 1984 and I was 6 (although maybe you will anyway, as I distinctly remember my older sister even then being too cool to join us in Bruce mania and requesting instead to be taken to see Boy George when he came to play in Melbourne where we lived at the time).