The internet and the sewing community is an interesting place because it's a very diverse collection of sewists. Sewists from various countries with the ability to access resources differently. Sewists in individual stages of their sewing journey. Sewists of different ages and spaces in their lives. Sewists of several body sizes & types, as well as races...all unalike but united in their love of putting needle and thread to cloth to make something new.
(photo courtesy of http://tarynleighhowe.blogspot.com/)
In the last couple of weeks I've posted a lot of fabric purchases. Some from my bucket list adventure, some from Christmas gift card purchases but even through my fabric haze, I can tell that it's a lot of fabric. One of the conversations held during my visit to Seattle is how I know think of my fabric collection as part of my Retirement Fund.
Honestly I have about 10 years to retirement and I think about it a lot...in a good way! See I've lived through the years of my first job, first apartment, first home, marriage & divorce, children and their growing up years. I'm moving into a cycle that's quite different from a large portion of the blogging sewing community - Retirement.
So when I read a blog post or an Instagram post about a young mother struggling to balance home, children and a career with sewing, I nod my head in understanding - been there, done that. When I read about sewists dealing with growing children and momentous events of their lives (proms, graduations, weddings), I nod my head in agreement - been there, done that. Or the sewist learning how to deal with empty nest syndrome - gawd have I been there and done that.
However, issues that face the older (for lack of a better word and believe me I reviewed several) sewist are rarely addressed in the sewing community. I don't know if it's because we're less visible in social media or it's just not thought of...because I remember being 35, married, working full-time with three daughters and having a total different view of the world than I do now as a woman approaching 60.
Why this reflection now? It's because I read a couple of Instagram posts and blog posts about "stashing less" and I got all up in my feelings. Isn't it interesting how you read someone else's experience and all of a sudden you feel the need to validate your own life choices!
Though after I thought about it for a minute, I realized that I should discuss the fabric buying, collecting or stashing as some of you call it. See I truly think of this fabric collection as my retirement fund. In less than a decade I'm going to have to learn to live on a much stricter budget than I am presently doing. Yes, many of my expenses will decrease since I will no longer head out to work every day. However, having my very deep and varied fabric collection will allow me to continue to do what I love. I will be able to sew for myself, my grandchildren and anyone else I desire.
During the next 10 years I will be adding less to the collection as I add more money to my actual retirement fund, but while I have the ability to add unique pieces to it now, I'm going to. It's interesting to be on the other end of the spectrum now since I so clearly remember being a 20 year old spending my lunch money for the week on a piece of fabric that I just had to have. To now being a conscious consumer debating how new pieces fit into the collection and how they can be used in the future.
All aspects of sewing is a journey...this just happens to be mine now.
...as always more later!