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Thread: Money$$$ spent on hooby quilting - how do you account for it???

  1. #1
    Super Member SueSew's Avatar
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    Question Money$$$ spent on hooby quilting - how do you account for it???

    Assuming you are not in a business, so you are not selling your work, how carefully do you account for your quilting costs?

    I am now about one delightful but expensive year into this addiction, and I have carefully saved every receipt in a little spot in the second drawer down at my sewing desk. Sometime this week I will be reviewing every one of those receipts: the fabric and thread, the tools and notions, the books, the patterns, and classes. I will not cost in the stuff I borrowed from my office - from binders and binder-clips to the extra 60" table I use for ironing, but the rest is all 'on the books'.

    I truly dread this.

    I know my costs are way over my other hobby, veggie gardening, where I've got about $150 in fertilizers, mulches, lime etc, $100 in seeds and plants, an occasional hoe or rake, a new set of wood boards for the raised beds every 3-4 years, way less water than my neighbors spend on their grass, and I get a 25x50 space packed with a year's worth of fresh and frozen delights. By contrast, I've gifted five baby quilts, one bed quilt, two lap quilts, made myself 4 placemats and have one UFO and some leftover fabric. I know that now I have the rulers and books and all that, it will be a less expensive hobby...but still...

    Do any of you have annual budgets for fabric, thread, tools/notions, books, patterns? Or do you just cap the total at so much a year?

    I am not asking for personal financial data, just an approach to controlling cost!

    Thanks!
    SueSew
    "If it's messy, eat it over the sink!" Mom

  2. #2
    Super Member Lori S's Avatar
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    I give myself an allowance , every month ... If there is leftover unspent .. it carries over to the next month. This is especially important when I go to shows ..and its so tempting to just BUY.
    I am gotten a pretty good handle on when the sales are , so I can guage accordingly.

  3. #3
    Super Member Iamquilter's Avatar
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    I have my own money for hand quilting services I do so I don't really budget but I also don't over spend or buy something just because it's on sale . I get a lot of fabric from various sources for charity quilts and when I run out of that I use my own.

  4. #4
    Senior Member tngal22's Avatar
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    Well I have just really started so most of my money has gone to supplies, ie mats, rulers, cutters. I have only bought fabric for projects I have planned. Now once I get better at quilting and sewing other items, then we may have a problem. lol

  5. #5
    Senior Member pinkberrykay's Avatar
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    I dont, this is something I enjoy so I don't put a $ amount on it. However, I don't go and spend hundreds of dollars every time I am at the LQS or JA. I buy what I need when I need it. The only other hobby I have is photography and I already have everything for that.

  6. #6
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    Oyyyyy!!!! I am a fabric addict!!! I have spent thousands on fabrics. I love fabric and color. When I am working, I don't worry about it, but I have been on a short leave of absence, so I am using the fabrics I have, rather than buy. I am on a budget now!!
    nancy
    Nancy Lee

  7. #7
    Super Member char634w's Avatar
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    I don't have a budget, I have a full time job and I buy what I want. Occasionally I feel a little guilty about my fabric stash, or my machines and tools but I have learned to live with the guilt (haha) and enjoy it. Life is so short and quilting makes me so happy and my husband appreciates beautiful quilts and good quality tools so he never says anything. He has always said that it is better to buy the best quality that you can afford so that is what I do. I do shop the sales for the better stuff and that always makes me feel good too. Sometimes I rationalize my purchases and say that I am buying for retirement because I won't have as much money then but I wonder if I am trying to fool myself - doesn't matter because I love everything about it. I could be spending $ on worse vises so I honestly don't feel that guilty. Quilts are beautiful and functional so I think it is all $ well spent regardless of how much.

  8. #8
    Senior Member cmw0829's Avatar
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    I don't have a budget but I don't spend excessively - except for last weekend. I bought stash at full price, bu it was for light colored pieces of which I have none.

    But we buy things on sale, buy day old breads, discounted meat and produce if still fresh, buy in bulk so save money in other ways. I seldom buy new clothing. So I have more money for my hobby.

  9. #9
    Senior Member klarina's Avatar
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    I don't have a budget but I'm careful not to overdo.
    I think if I were to look back at what I have spent, it would take the fun out of it.
    Baby Lock Ellisimo-^-Baby Lock Ellageo-^-Brother PQ1500s-^-1947 Featherweight.
    Janome 19660-^-Baby Lock Serger-^-Singer Serger-^-Accuquilt Go & Brother ScannCut.

  10. #10
    Super Member woody's Avatar
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    What price do I put on my happiness?? I don't have shoe collections or designer clothes, or spend hundreds of dollars on makeup and beauty treatments, I only go to the hairdressers for special occassions. Quilting makes me happy!!!
    I don't have much of a stash and am careful what I buy, but it's my sanity
    The biggest risk is the one not taken

  11. #11
    Power Poster ckcowl's Avatar
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    i budget fairly stringently- i quilt for others to help support my 'habit' i do not get into the household budget for my hobby- i do what i can to make extra- pick up an extra shift- sell something, do consignments, and quilt- all make it possible to keep stocked and happy
    i also keep every receipt and keep close (tabs) on my spending- and if i find i really went over board one year- i assess why and work on (fixing) that.
    hiding away in my stash where i'm warm, safe and happy

  12. #12
    Senior Member grammy17's Avatar
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    I started buying Men's cotton shirts 15 for $3 at a thrift store. My first quilts were all from men's shrts. Still using that stash and now the shirts are 15@$5 still a lot of material for little money. buy remnants at JoAnns occasionally yardage for a specific project. Did calculate what one quilt cost and I was shocked! All new fabric. I use old sheets for backing either from thrift store or some I inherited when a friend passed.

  13. #13
    Member saragasch's Avatar
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    Quilting is my sanity. I shop with coupons, buy only used clothes for myself, have a garden and fruit trees which save money. The only 'expense' i have for me is quilting. With that said, I try to only buy on sale and I only shop after everything else has been accounted for. I don't allow myself to ever charge my hobby, if I don't have cash, I don't get it. I have not tabulated how much I have spent, however; I do keep track of how much I have saved with coupons and sale prices. Does that count?

  14. #14
    Super Member Mad Mimm's Avatar
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    I am on a pretty tight budget so anything I spend on quilting is carefully planned. If possible, I borrow tools that I don't already have and need for a specific project, and rent books from the library instead of buying them. I recently splurged on fabric but that was a birthday gift and the amount I spent was carefully calculated and stuck to like glue!

    In the past, when I worked full time, I spent money without really accounting too much. I would keep receipts only as references for where I purchased a certain fabric line, etc., but not to add up and see how much I spent. Now, I only spend what I can afford and plan carefully. Of course, I am not a fabric hoarder. I buy fabric for specific projects and rarely, when I see something I love, I will buy it and stash it for later use.

    For what it is worth, if you think the dollar amount of your receipts is going to inhibit your enjoyment of quilting, then I say toss them in the fire and burn them. If you are on a budget like me and want to make sure you are not over-spending, that is a different story. Just don't let the money involved make you feel guilty about doing what you love. Remember, all those quilts you have gifted were GIFTS so you would have spent that money anyway and in the case of quilting, you get to enjoy your hobby and give a gift with the same dollars.
    Last edited by Mad Mimm; 01-04-2012 at 02:24 PM. Reason: dreadful grammar
    Sheila N.

    When Thomas Edison invented the light bulb, he tried over 2000 experiments before he got it to work. A young reporter asked him how it felt to fail so many times. He said, "I never failed once. I invented the light bulb. It just happened to be a 2000 step process."

  15. #15
    Power Poster MadQuilter's Avatar
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    From our earnings we have X$ going to retirement savings plans, x$ to pay for expenses/bills, X$ for food/entertainment, some goes to charity and some goes to quilting and DH's interests. I do not set a fixed limit on what I buy. When money is tight then I cut way back and with all the stuff I do have, I keep myself in stitches for a while without spending any additional money. If I were to look at every receipt and had to justify to myself why I bought it or chastise myself for spending that money, I think I would start visiting the liquor store instead. My hobby is my sanity - it gives me joy. The books on cost will never balance and they don't need to.
    Martina
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  16. #16
    Senior Member imdelagarza62's Avatar
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    I too don't really have a set budget. I buy when I need something and usually with a coupon. If I don't have something, I usually check with my aunt or a dear friend who have also been sewing and quilting for years and have always offered stash or to borrow notions or patterns.

  17. #17
    Super Member luvTooQuilt's Avatar
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    I would be afraid to calculate.. I leave that to hubby.. But im sure it would be close to a new car... If i knew for sure I think id lose interest as the thought of the $ would be burning in my brain.. With that said- I hardly ever, and probably could say that I dont ever buy full price.. I use a coupon, buy sale ,clearance, and discontinued fabs.. Plus I wait till the shop hops to buy as well as they give you 25% off their fabs..

    Anyway, If hubby isnt complaining, then why should I?
    Last edited by luvTooQuilt; 01-04-2012 at 02:41 PM.

  18. #18
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    how expensive is a phyciatrist or therapy? It's my therapy and I make what I'm asked for and give to local charities and hospitals. keep ALL scrap's! use any and all coupons and sales. It's nearly perfect for someone housebound like me!! Angry? rip an old sheet apart for a rag rug. Don't want to think about sad things? Pick a complicated pattern up and start the math! Bad day and hurting? crazy scrap time or leftover strip quilt. really bad day? crayons and paper! design your own possibilities.
    don't stop!just keep trying and something usable will turn out!!

  19. #19
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    I guess on the flip side would be to figure in the cost of the TV(s) and cable service, rented movies, snacks eaten watching tv, doctors visits from eating the snacks, the cost of the *living room* .. perhaps 15% of the size of the house, along with heat and gas and taxes, the furnishings in the living room, visits to restaurants because you are bored as there is nothing to watch on TV, gas to get to the restaurant and the % of ownership of the car and insurance... and so on... and then add it all up at the end of the year to calculate the dollar expense of watching TV... or.. being as most quilters are not gluttons for needing dollar amounts totaled up over a year... just *ENJOY WHAT YOU ENJOY... LOL (Sheeps)

  20. #20
    Super Member Tink's Mom's Avatar
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    Sue...think of it this way....it is cheaper, by far than therapy!
    Tink's Mom (My name is really Susie)

  21. #21
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    I find that hobbies tend to be expensive. Sewing/ quilting is cheaper than traveling which is what we did before we retired.

  22. #22
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    Ido not worry about what i spend on this hob by, I love to do it and I give most of what I make to charity or relatives. I figure since I don't drink , don't run around and am a good person, I deserve to be happy. My husband smokes, drinks lightly, has a snowmobile, a four wheeler and umpteen guns for hunting. What I spend on quilting is insignificant compared to that.

  23. #23
    Senior Member Drue's Avatar
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    I don't really think about the cost of making a quilt. If I find a pattern I really like and vision the fabrics to use for it and find them...or something that will work that suits me....then it's a "quilt". I'm sorry, but if you have to think that it's so terribly over priced then maybe you don't value your work as I do mine. I will not cut quality on my quilts with the fabrics. I may change my mind for a lower cost fabric that will still give me the same results, but I don't buy "cheap" fabric. I do end up selling most of mine, but not all. Those I don't sell make very nice gifts (that I'm not ashamed of putting my name on) or even donation quilts ( that I'm not ashamed of putting my name on). I know that the work and the fabric is "quality" stuff!
    Those who are piecemakers will sew seeds.

    Hugs,
    Drue

  24. #24
    Power Poster BellaBoo's Avatar
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    No budget and a DH who doesn't care how much fabric I buy. I spent over $300 yesterday at Marshall's and I didn't need any fabric at all but it sure looks good in my stash! I went with three other quilting friends and I spent the least amount. I know my quilting friends out spend me on every shopping trip so really I need to catch up.
    Got fabric?

  25. #25
    Super Member GrannieAnnie's Avatar
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    Most of mine goes for gifts or for charity. I don't intent to account for it.
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