Wednesday, April 13, 2011

I Need to Simplify (WARNING - RANT!)

Ok.  I know it has been a while since I've posted a card, but I've been busy doing other crafty things.  I've been crocheting doilies and pot scrubbers, painting and padding the top of the stool in my craft room, (thinking about) refinishing a cubby organizer for my daughters hair clips, elastics, etc., sewing scrub hats for me to wear at work, and making felt posies.  I will post pictures of all my fun stuff as soon as I take some.  I haven't taken the time to do that yet!  Besides that fact, my craft cave is so messy from having 8 million projects in the works, I would have to clean it up first!  *sigh*

I have also been going through our basement 'junk' trying to get it organized in our new storage area.  *big sigh*  What a job that has been!  I can only say that I have waaaaaaay too much stuff.  It has been rather emotional going through boxes of things I have kept from my childhood.  Some things are easy to part with like all the rocks I thought were pretty because they sparkled, but what do I do with my vintage Freakies magnets?  Do you remember them?  Who knows why I kept them, but now I have to decide if I should just throw them away or try to sell them.  And is it really worth it to go through the hassle of passing them on?  Ugh!  I have some major baggage, and that is just one example of everything I've found!

Needless to say, I have been in extreme purge mode.  I even went through my stamps again, and now have another huge stack I am going to get rid of.  I decided it is more of a hassle to keep them around 'just in case', and it limits my creativity when I have so many choices.  Not to mention feeling bad every time I see un-inked sets I have had for years.  Why do I need them?  If they havn't been used yet, chances are they will never get used, so they have to go.

I am starting to feel the same way about all the color choices as far as my paper goes.  I use mostly white, ivory, and kraft, so why do I have no less than 107 different colors???  And I'm not making that up - I counted them all!  Why in the world do I need that much paper?  Knowing myself and the reason I have it all, I could answer that question with one word.  Comfort.  Comfort in knowing it is there if I need it.  But it is weighing me down.  I am starting to think the convenience of having it all isn't worth the weight of having it all.

Remember all that velvet ribbon I bought on sale the other week?

I returned it all except for the red and green narrow spools.  I intend to use them on Christmas cards, and that is all I really need.  Not every color in every width.  It wasn't until I was at a different Hobby Lobby and bought even more colors that I realized I had gone way overboard.  Geeze, what was I thinking?  I really don't have to have it all.

Sorry for the rant, but just wanted to let my dear readers know what has been going on.  My creative energy has been more focused on other crafts lately, but I know I will get back to making cards.  Sometime.  I just have a lot of simplifying to do in the meantime.

If you have any tips or thoughts you want to share on how you simplify your stash or life, please share.  I would love to hear what you do.



Shore Girl said...

Ooooo now you sound like me -- forever simplifying and get rid of stuff! My husband says I'm dangerous when I get in moods like that, he's forever searching trash cans/goodwill bags to be sure I haven't discarded some "treasure."
I can honestly say that I don't miss anything I've gotten rid of -- so guess that proves I didn't need it anyway.
When I "purge" my stash - I get rid of things that I haven't touched (or thought of touching) in a year's time....except for stamps and paper.
I do weed out stamps...especially if they were part of a goodwill bag or box lot.
I used to buy any good deal I saw (stamps at Big Lots for 99 cents, calendars with cool images for 10 cents, ribbon clearance etc. etc.), but now I'm to the place that I talk myself out of it BEFORE I exit the store and thereby save myself from needing to "purge my stash" quite as often.
When I clean out - I usually pass the stuff I'm getting rid of on to my 15 yr. old sister in law who is just starting out in paper crafts and LOVES anything and everything I give her!

Doris said...

I don't usually buy impulsively, and I do try not to get caught up in the latest... One thing that helps is to concentrate on new techniques rather than new stamps. Still, I have ro purge my "tower" every few months and give away some of the things I haven't touched in over a year. Check out my blog for some organizing tips!

Betty said...

Yep, I can sure sympathize. I have been planning a big purge in the basement storage and my spare closets. Do I really need the hardside luggage I got when I graduated from wheels? But DH is a packrat and goes through garbage and keeps things. As far as stamps, unless I really hate them, I found I miss some I have got rid of. There is a Herb set my DD took and I wanted it SO bad the other day. Was panicked when I thought I sold a set I needed to make something. I have quit purging stamps and paper. My craft stuff is MINE, other crap can go!

Sue said...

Purging is tough isn’t it? I had a purge a couple of years ago on stuff I’d kept since I was a baby, I’m now 56. I cried buckets when I let them go; then I trashed the lot, some may have been worth something, but how do you put a monetary value on sentiment, I know I couldn’t? The stuff has gone but the memories remain and I like the extra space. Must be a spring thing but I’ve been purging my craft room too this week. I need to be more discerning when I buy; I tend to buy because I like, without thinking about if I will actually use it or if it suits my style of card at present. Last year I was into patterned paper, flowers, embellishments, this year I prefer the simpler, less cluttered style and some of those patterned papers make me cringe, what was I thinking? They’ve got to go, I have to stop thinking of all that money I spent on them and think about the space letting them go will create.

Susan Raihala said...

I feel your pain. Trying to figure this out takes soooo much mental and emotional energy. I do feel better for having let some stuff go, and probably need to let go of more. It's just stuff. One thing I've found that helps is gathering stuff I think I want to purge and storing it in a distant corner of the basement (as far away from my craft room as it's possible to be in our house!). I date the boxes, and if I haven't retrieved anything from it in a year, I take the box to Salvation Army...without opening it. (Well, i try not to open it....) I figure if I didn't need anything in it during the past year, I probably won't need it in the coming years.

Good luck!