Warning, this post will be mostly ranting. I just feel that I have to get my thoughts out there today.
Ok, call it what you will. Thrifty, frugal, tight, or the real hurt...cheap. I am! And I will sometimes add that term to my full name inserting the appropriate term into my middle name. But, I look at it as being resourceful. When staying in a hotel, I always choose one that offers free continental breakfast in the price of my room. I eat until I'm full and carry a few bits back to my room for later. Give me a break, who doesn't do this? I'm not talking about plates full of food. One sachet of peanut butter and jam and one apple is lunch to me. And if saving over $15 a day just for lunch is what I need to do these days, then that's the way it has to be.
When I buy fabric, or threads, I always buy what's on sale. I've never gone into a brick and mortar shop to choose designer themes and patterns and tools. Oh the tools! Tools for every little thing. This has turned into a multi-mibillion $$$$ industry! Patterns for absolutely everything and then some. Patterns that have been rewritten for rotary cutting or paper piecing. The pattern library is enormous and you could spend a fortune on just a few patterns or books with patterns.
Threads are NOT something I cheap out on, however I buy the best when it's on sale. I currently have 4 full drawers of threads. I can safely say that I will never have to buy another spool of thread as long as I live, just hope everyone loves purple. After all they were on sale or the "try me" price which was about 40% cheaper than a regular spool, you just couldn't always choose your own color.
Speaking of fabric. Do you discard pieces smaller than say 2"? My scrap bag is huge right now even though I sifted through it a few months back and donated some. My pieces range in size and all jumbled up in one huge tote bag. Not ideal, I know. If I spent time sorting by size or color or both, I would never get anything done. That would consume my life, no doubt. The only type of sorting I've done is cutting off 1"-2" selvage strips and put them in a container.
Back to patterns. Remember having to draw out our patterns on graph paper, then draw that onto template plastic (or recycled card, the frugal choice), cut it out and draw it again onto your fabric and don't forget to add that 1/4" to your drawn pattern piece! I still have my "1/4" seamer ". Yes, and how many of those tools you had to buy for one class or one pattern are now unused and pushed to the back end of the drawer? It doesn't matter if you bought the pattern from the teacher or a shop or downloaded it online and had to print it yourself, they cost a small fortune since you may only use it once. The frugal choice.......wait for it..................buy used from sales, or google free patterns online (my favorite right now). Social media like Pinterest can be a great source for inspiration. Another great choice is the local library. I love the library, and yep, free! And, the library will let you photocopy up to 10 pages, at least ours will, yay! Their quilt book selection is huge as well as their knitting and crocheting selection and instructional DVD selection. Their web catalog lists other county libraries and will get you a title if it's available out of my area. Did I mention that I love the library?
Ok, there it is. I feel better and after reflection, will strive to not buy anything on a whim even if it's on sale and possibly explore my "hobby" in a tighter sphere honing one aspect instead of thinking that I need to try it all. At one time, I wanted to create a technique book as I did in C&G years ago, but really, who am I kidding?