Thursday, August 7, 2008

I bought a fabric pantry!

I know most people do Spring cleaning and it's August. I'd been going through a tough time recently and am on the upswing from it, creating this immediate and important urge to purge all things I don't need in my home. ALL of them. I want to go minimalist in my home. Now, usually these feelings are fleeting, so I think that I should follow suit this one time and see where it leads me.

All of you who make things by hand probably know how easy it is to feel the need to buy as many supplies as possible. I have gone through these weird crafty phases, a sort of handmade Attention Deficit Disorder.

Since stumbling upon Etsy, I have knit and collected tons and tons of different types of yarn, needles, and notions.

I then decided I wanted to get into paper goods and I bought envelope templates and fancy papers and envelope glue and made envelopes and flatcards.

Then I saw a show on TV on how easy stained glass is and decided to try my hand at stained glass. Enter cabochons, 30+ stained glass squares and rectangles, glass cutters, oil, solder, soldering iron, copper tape, wire and suction cups. Okay, stained glass? Not easy at all! I have the solder scars to prove it.

I then took a pillow making class and started collecting fabrics, threads, and pillow inserts. Then makeup bags and coin purses, add to my collection of fabrics and threads, I now have tons of canvas, interfacing, zippers, felt squares, pinking shears, and fancy fabric scissors. Let's not count the numerous measuring tapes, rulers, yardsticks, sewing machine needles, fabric tags, googly eyes, fabric paints.

Now, picture me in a large (by NYC standards) 2BR apt, with a roommate, two sewing machines, a full-sized ironing board and two bookcases of craft books.

HOLY COW. Crafts have taken over my LIFE!

I have plastic Sterilite, Muji, and Rubbermaid bins for everything, so it's all organized within them, including ones for my completed projects, but I've always wanted to have my fabrics out so they remind me to get cracking at the machine.

I have 3 days off this week (today through Saturday) and am using the time to organize it all into a 5ft x 2ft x 1.5ft wooden pantry with doors that I purchased from Target today. Once I get it all organized in one space, I can use all the plastic bins to decide what books, clothes, dvds and other things to donate or list on Freecycle, making a happier, more organized, creative minimal space where everything has a place and that place isn't in every room in my apartment.

I cannot wait! I am thinking of how to decorate this very boring beech-colored cabinet. I was thinking maybe stencils. I will post the project once completed. I can't wait!

<3 Always,

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Handmade dreams...

My workplace and every workplace on the block was evacuated by the bomb squad because of a "suspicious package" yesterday evening. It reminded me of anthrax threats post 9/11 7 years ago, and as I left the building and hurried to a subway station far away to go home, I thought to myself "is this worth it? is it truly worth it?"

I enjoy my day job. I don't want to do it forever, but for now, it pays the bills and supports my craft supply addiction pretty nicely.

I couldn't help thinking about how an alpaca farm in rural middle America would be less of a target for terrorists or angry Americans. I could have alpacas and angora rabbits and spin yarn and weave and knit. I could get huge tax deductions for being solar or windpowered, sell my wares online, live a quiet life crafting, enjoy the outdoors, drive a Prius, and not worry about bomb threats every day.

I never used to really worry about these things before having a penpal. I like sending my penpal something in the mail every day. This is hard when the blue street mailboxes surrounding my workplace are sealed shut for fear of bombs when contraversial political figures are in town. Sometimes the mailboxes are completely removed from the sidewalk, vanished into thin air. Garbage cans are also removed, but I rarely throw anything out in them when they are around.

I don't know. I would love to retire and have a cupcake bakery with nice comfy chairs and lots of craft books around, friends artwork displayed on the walls, good music, a community place. I can't do that here in NYC, it's too expensive. As I get older (almost 27 1/2 this month), I can't help but think more and more about my future. Some place where I don't have the cloud of doom over my head.

<3 Always,