During my visits to southern Illinois last month, my mother and I did some much needed sorting and organizing in her attic. I love that she trusts me with this task. My mother is the person who taught me to see potential in everything, so I know it’s hard for her to let go of things. I also know how good it feels to finally say “I’m never going to finish that” and get rid of pieces and projects that no longer bring joy, only guilt.
Next week is her church’s annual craft sale, so we used that as inspiration and dove in to find things we could donate. Between our “for the craft sale” pile and our “give to Goodwill” pile we ended up with a “make something of it” pile (does that really surprise you?), which included things like pillow shams we could turn into chair covers or incredibly old books that were too interesting to toss out until we knew more about them. From that pile, I brought home a huge stash of scarves, thinking some might be considered “vintage” (they are from the ’70s, after all) and would sell on Ebay.
I ran them through a gentle cycle in my washer and hung them in my kitchen to dry. It only took a day or so before I gave up on the idea of selling them. The photographs I took didn’t do them justice and none of them have tags, so even if there is a rare gem in the stash, I’d have no way of knowing. Still, they were so pretty and had the potential to make someone happy. What to do, what to do . . .
Then it hit me: gift wrap! I could use these beauties to wrap my gifts in this year – an eco-friendly alternative to paper and a bonus gift, since the wrapping is reusable (either as a scarf or to be used again to wrap a gift). Best of all, I get to enjoy trying to match each scarf with the different personalities I give gifts to each year.
I’m heading to Illinois again tomorrow. I wonder what we’ll find in the attic this weekend?