I finally let myself buy the beautiful vintage tablecloth I’d been coveting. I love love love textiles, old and new. My obsession for them is evident in their plenitude in closets and bins under skirted tables. I’d refrained from buying this one for a long time. It wasn’t in the greatest condition for the price. But the modern color palette of blue, red, brown, and lime green and the bold red Greek key pattern along the edge, eventually beckoned for me in my memory and I finally drove to the antique store to buy it.

The stains were still there a year later and the price was still too high but I was there to buy it. So I could stop thinking about the one that got away. We only seem to remember the things we didn’t buy, not the things we did. Soon I won’t remember the cool old branch stool I got too while I was there. Or the chartreuse napkin set.

I got the cloth home, treated the spots, threw some all-fabric bleach in the wash and let her go. And when it came out, it was slightly pink. Huh? I couldn’t believe it. That wasn’t supposed to happen. So, in my denial, I threw it back into the wash again. And it came out again ever so slightly pink. My denial didn’t change the fact that it had been pinkified.

See, there’s the problem with expectations. By washing my t-cloth, I expected the stains to fade, make it smell nicer, and then I’d slam it down on the table for that celebration occasion. But this pinkification wasn’t on my list of possibilities. I was in disbelief. And then I realized, the ceiling in the dining room is sort of that fleshy color. It’ll match.

My adjusted attitude to my unwanted outcome came quicker than usual. I wanted to be aggravated because I should have known the red dye would be unstable. But I just figured I’m talented enough to style around it. How about that? Maybe next time I’ll remember about dyes. Or not. But the transformation kinda added a girly edge to the modern retro cloth. Unexpected can be a good thing. Rose colored glasses anyone?

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    1. Obsession with cloth literally lasted a year. Imagine how happy I was to see it. Imagine how sad to pinkify it. I should be embarrassed I didn’t iron it before taking picyures.

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