I'm in a book club. Well, several actually, but the one that met yesterday at my house is known for being more about drinking wine than deep book discussions. We hadn't met for a while, so I decided to invite everyone over for a meetup that skipped the book altogether this time and instead focused on doing a book and clothing exchange. As an added incentive, I offered to drop off any leftover books or garments at Goodwill.
The story about tracking down the ingredients for the dipping sauce could be its own blog post. In short, I never did find the tamarind paste the recipe called for, but I ended up substituting tamarind sauce from a box of Trader Joe's pakora and it seemed to turn out fine. Next time I'll order tamarind paste online in advance and make it the right way.
My guests brought summery white wines and margaritas, some sweet and savory treats and a few miscellaneous tradeable items in addition to the books and clothing that kept things interesting.
Of course we played with the foster kittens. It's good for them to be exposed to a variety of people, so I was glad to see them calm down after their initial trepidation when a crowd of women invaded their space and insisted on snuggling them...twice.
This group does a round-robin method with the offered clothing items. Each person holds up a garment or two, announces the size, makes a few comments about fit and why they're giving it away, and the first person to express an interest gets it. From time to time, the attendees break away to try things on, which sometimes frees up an item for someone else to claim. Certain items are modeled for the group to help the chooser decide. I'm pretty sure I recall Spyder telling me my ass looked great in a particular pair of capris. It's that kind of crowd!
We've all done enough clothing exchanges together that some items come back through again after a wearing or two. We gain weight, we lose weight, and it's nice to be able to pass things along to friends so everyone gets a refreshed wardrobe without spending a dime.
Everything about the evening was delightful. We all ended up with some nice "new" articles of clothing and passed along garments we no longer wanted. Of the table full of books, only about a dozen went unclaimed. It was really lovely to see everyone and it underscored that I need to plan social events at my house more often.
I think Susan summed it up nicely:
What a fun night!