okay okay but i'm getting ahead of myself because where we tracked down colorful pleather is the best part.
i've ventured to this place before, so let me be your tour guide... you drive about 20 minutes from your house to this run down looking strip mall. the biggest store there has giant, chipped lettering across the front which reads FABRICS R US. can you say intellectual property rights?there is a plethora of various bolts of fabrics strewn all over & propped up against the walls. there are no windows. there are women bustling in & out & you can swear you just heard someone yelling about price per yardage, but it wasn't clear. you get out of your vehicle, very glad that you are with someone who's a virtuoso at this. before heading in you spot thick fleece jesus fabric with a halo & the whole nine yards (if you'll excuse the pun) & wonder "where AM i?". oh but it gets better. the whole store is stuffed full of fabrics, beading, thread, lace, elastic, zippers, you name it. but there is no method to the madness. it's a complete & utter mess. there are spry, quick-tongued chinese women darting around getting in people's faces & asking what they want. you feel like you are in a chinese speaking mexican market with all the bartering & noise. there are dozens of persian ladies comparing whole scrolls & being very excited about something. you guess it's the price. then you try & look at a price tag. price tag?! what, are you kidding?! you think you've found what you want after zig-zagging in & out of narrow walkways draped in textiles. an extremely pushy lady walks up, inches from your face, "you want? you want how much?" you throw a wide-eyed glance @ your mom. you both have just stopped laughing at this insanity.
"um 2 yards?"
"oh no, you no want 2. 3. i give 3 you."
she whips out giant shears and cuts your choice, right there. it drops to the floor while she sticks the scissors back in her pocket. she lunges down & haphazardly folds the cloth into a travel sized ball & practically hurls it at you. she jots 3 X 7 on a scrap piece of paper and shoves it in your hand before flitting away. you make your way to the cash register & see the sign that says '4% down if cash'. you grin & pay cash. what? 4% is 4%! they are pretty friendly ladies, just apparently in a bit of a stressful environment. "come 'gain! come 'gain!" as your walking out you see a truly overwhelmed, bambi of a girl who has just had her selection ripped from her hands. they are fanning it out & telling her why her thread choice was a poor one. total chaos but you gotta love it! you can't wait to come 'gain!