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Why Do Quilters Have So Much Fabric?

Mar 31st 2021

Quilters have a lot of fabric. That is a natural consequence of the hobby, but why? There are many cheeky comments online about “hoarding disorders”, but that is not the real reason. The real reasons we have so much fabric are varied. Let’s consider a few:

  • It was on sale – This rationale is the subject of many memes, but with good quality quilting fabric costing upwards of $10-12 per yard, it is sufficient justification. Maybe you don’t need that fabric today, but it will come in handy later so let’s take advantage of the cost savings now!
  • It is for my 401F, “fabric retirement account” – Many quilters actively build their stashes while they are gainfully employed knowing that in their retirement years, fabric is going to be even more expensive than it is today. As long as you keep it out of the sunlight and away from dampness, quilting fabric can never “go bad”, so stashing up now just makes good sense.
  • Inspiration everywhere – I am sure I speak for many quilters out there not just myself when I say, its hard to walk into a fabric store for a specific thing and not walk out with additional, unplanned acquisitions. Seeing new colors and designs always sends my imagination spinning with what I “could” make with those fabrics. I buy some, hoping I will be able to find time to actually make that newly envisioned project… someday.
  • It was just pretty – I have purchased fabric many times just because it was pretty, with little or no idea about what it would be used for. For quilters, many times quilting is more akin to collecting rather than sewing, and that is just as valid as any other “collecting” hobby. We take the fabric out from time to time, we admire it, we think about what we might make with it. Maybe we use it, maybe we put it back in the stash. Either way, it just makes us happy to own a little bit of it.
  • Stash-building – Folks who quilt a lot know what they are always in need of. For me, it is green. I can’t get enough of it and I can never have too many shades of green. Having a variety of fabrics on hand to choose from helps new quilting projects come to life without a mad dash to the fabric store.
  • Whatever your reason, go buy some fabric today. I can guarantee you’ll be glad you did!

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