The Sacred Stash

by Toni Carroll

Oh, come on now…we all have them. The real truth is we claim to be sewers only so we can justify our need to collect fabric and notions. The one who dies with the most fabric wins, don't you know? The problem is, that stash of fabrics is beginning to take over our lives. Then again, I think it is rather colorful to have guests sit on tall piles of fabric to watch the games with us. Don't you? You can also put a piece of glass on four equal height piles and, voila, you have a great coffee table! Besides, we are doing our husbands a favor by completely filling the useless spaces under all those beds with fabric. No more need to vacuum under there. You have trained your husband to vacuum, dust, iron, and do laundry haven't you? About the only things these fancy new machines won't do these days is cook dinner and make love to our husbands for us. But, that's OK, we don't want to be completely out of a job.

The only real problem I can see is that no project is truly wonderful enough to actually USE something from the Sacred Stash. After all, once you use it, you no longer have it available. When I was a little girl I would sometimes receive money for my birthday. I would shop for months without actually spending my money. My mother asked me why. I replied "Once I really spend the money – I won't have it anymore. So, I walk around the stores and when I see something I want, I just smile to myself and think... I could have that if I wanted". I look at patterns and think, "I could make that if I wanted. I have the perfect fabrics." I smile to myself and keep flipping pages. Of course, I do now also own four large drawers full of patterns. But we'll discuss that in another therapy session.

Recently, I had a dream, well, a nightmare actually. I died and went to heaven. Hey, it's my dream. I can go to heaven if I want to! Anyway, as I was sitting there on my cloud, wondering where angels plug in their sewing machines, I noticed my daughter enter my sewing room. What? I watched in horror as the inner sanctum was penetrated. To my surprise no alarms went off, the sun was not blacked out, the world did not stop spinning. The heavens did not part with the booming voice of God, palm of hand facing Nicole, saying, "NO NON-SEWERS MAY ENTER THIS HALLOWED GROUND". Not only that, but she did not even look around with the awe of appreciation required in the inner sanctum. She did not stroke all the beautifully colored fabrics, and get that moist eyed look of sheer joy we all know so well. What have I raised? Where did I fail her? But it got worse. With my eyes as big as saucers and my fingers pressed tightly against my lips, I watched from my cloud, in total disbelief, as she brought in large cardboard boxes with the most vile, frightening words I have ever seen…Thrift Store Donations! I was frantic. What to do, what to do? The final straw was when she headed for the presser feet and notions. Useless piece of junk? What? That's a bias binder attachment you twit! Did I teach you nothing? Calm down, I told myself. She is the sweet, beautiful, loving, intelligent mother of my two perfect granddaughters, and a wonderful mother at that. I didn't fail completely. This other part must be her father's fault. I kept repeating...this must be a dream, this must be a dream.

Thankfully, I woke up. I jumped out of bed and ran screaming down the hall to my Sewing Room. There it stood in all its glorious disarray. Drawers of patterns, boxes of feet, trays of notions, and yes, the Sacred Stash in all its blazing rainbow of visual delight. I emerged much later, blowing my nose, wiping my eyes with hands tinted with dye from stroking my stash, and reassuring them all that they will not end up in a thrift store.

Morals of the story:

  1. Do not die.
  2. Teach your daughters to sew.
  3. Actually make things with your stash. She hasn't ever given away anything I have made for her or the girls.
  4. You may want to leave the price tags on your notions so your kids will have some clue that a multiple spool holder is not just "some worthless, dumb looking pointy thing". Precaution, tell your husband that if he ever enters your sewing room, football, golf and basketball will vanish from the face of the earth forever.
  5. Now, go sew.

    This article was written and posted for your enjoyment. Any reprint or reuse, in part or in whole, is strictly prohibited without express written permission from Toni Carroll. Copywrite implied.