I'm just starting to sew after a long hiatus (home ec was quite a while ago and I apparently remember almost nothing!
). I don't know of any groups per se but I'm happy to chat if you don't mind a beginners perspective!
I know what you mean also about sharing stash finances...thankfully, most of what I've gotten for sewing and some quilting was on great sale at JoAnn's (they have a wonderful sale on now on sewing notions and fat quarters, interfacing, etc. FYI as well as 40% off off quilting and knitting and crochet books) so it wasn't too bad and I got my sewing machine for a great deal on eBay!