Wednesday, April 3, 2013

A Papercrafting Confession

It’s funny to me how hobbies develop.  I started scrapbooking when I was in high school, and looking at those books now is just so embarrassing compared to more recent things I’ve made.  I quit scrapbooking once I got a digital camera, which was a huge mistake – but it really missed the thrill of developing those disposable point n shoots.  Anyway, I started making cards in 2010, and again, those creations are totally embarrassing. 

Cards 5     Pearl Gateway - February Cards 034

Two cards from 2010 on the left and something a couple weeks ago on the right (which I’m sure will be embarrassing to me by 2014 if not sooner hehe)

But I love the progression.  As I was developing the card making I was also dabbling in a lot of other crafting mediums.  I started collecting watercolor/acrylic/oil/latex/spray/ASCP paints, ribbon, beaded fringe, mosaic pieces and broken glass, I bought jewelry making tools and beads off craigslist, and random bits and bobs from garage sales – and don’t get me started on the clearance aisles at Michael’s/JoAnn’s/Hobby Lobby.

Over time, I’ve managed to narrow down what I really enjoy.  I might do a mosaic here and again, or even make myself a pair of earrings.  But compared to papercrafting they are seldom enjoyed.  A lot of it I am learning to try, and then let go.  I go through modes of throwing things out/giving things away/selling collections of stuff.  My craft room has not been spared.  It is literally a release, to know what you will use and what you will not.  I am working on clearing some things out.

Back to the paper crafting:  In 2011 I discovered Tim Holtz – and I had to have everything Distress. It wasn’t long before I had every ink from Aged Mahogany to Worn Lipstick.  I’ve talked about this before, where craft suppliers really know their niche, and know who they’re dealing with.  We tend to be very collective, and I am certainly no exception.  From the inks I had crackle paint, stains, stickles, markers, and re inkers.  Over time I saw ink sprays, and started collecting Tattered Angels.  A ton of Inkadinkado stamp sets because they were on clearance from $9.99 to $1.99 a piece.  Then Copics.  Neon inks.  And on and on.  Now I am looking at all of this stuff, and I am realizing what I use on a regular basis, and what I don’t.

A big part of it is the sampling – I love to try new things, and this I certainly don’t regret.  As I’m always saying to my husband, “How will you know if you like it if you never try it?”  (Which is usually in reference to trying vegetables.)  The other part is obvious collectivism/hoarding.  But as I view a pile of recently completed cards – I see that they aren’t “Distressed”.  And I hardly ever touch the Inkadinkados because the stamps are low quality and I don’t really care for the images.  I almost never use ribbon, and can’t remember the last time I ran an embossing folder through my Texture Boutique.

I feel like with each card I make I continue to develop my own style.  I have to know myself and what I use.  My other problem is price – I’m a thrifter at heart.  I buy all types of crap because it’s on sale, not because it’s a product I really want.  Isn’t it better to spend $5.99 on a bottle of Mister Huey's that will get spritzed frequently, than to spend $0.59 on some random beaded ribbon that will never see the front of a card?  I’m beginning to think so!

Please tell me I’m not alone in this.  What craft or element within a craft have you collected, only to discover it isn’t really your thing after all?  Have you managed to get rid of it or are you still holding on?