Friday, January 3, 2014

New Year's Resolutions

Well, stash busting is kind of the whole point of this blog, but I've been doing a terrible job of it, so I'm taking this opportunity to re-dedicate myself to my goal. I've actually been pretty good (relatively speaking) about not buying anything new unless it's for a specific project, but I've been very very bad about actually making anything (and definitely about blogging about it!).

Most recent purchases: Harry Potter scrapbooking paper (that I knew I'd need!), white tulle for a winter skirt (that I've been wanting to make forever!), and patterns (they were on sale at JoAnn! But when I got them home, I realized I'd already bought 2 of them...). See? This is the problem. I want/need things, but don't use them. I buy duplicates because I have so much and can't remember what I've already bought. It's time for a change. 

 Way past time, actually. This was AFTER I spent quite a bit of time "cleaning up."

Way, way past time
Okay, this is just getting ridiculous. This doesn't even include all of the stuff I still have at my parents' house!

As you can see, my stash is completely out of control right now. I've been trying to organize it, but there's just so much of it, and the addition of (only about a quarter of) my scrapbooking stash, brought back from my parents' house, has not helped matters.

So, I'll be joining some other lovely bloggers who are also dedicating themselves to this goal - Stash Diet 2014!

First and foremost, I need to get organized. I know that I won't be able to accomplish anything if I have to look at/dig through this huge mess every time I need something for a project. I have lots of shelves and drawers, which is a great first step. My only planned organizing purchase is a pegboard and hooks to hang up my stickers and scrapbooking bits and baubles, though I have no idea where I'm going to hang it. I'm thinking an easel might be an interesting option, but that takes up precious floor space, so...

Other than that, I'm going to have to break down my goals by craft/medium to help me plan:


  • Get pictures printed! This is step #1 in completing all of those pages I need to finish, obviously. 
  • Get to work for the first time in years! Once I'm in the zone, I can usually crank out quite a few pages a night, but it's hard to get started without a dedicated table/place where I can leave my mess out, so my goal is to keep my coffee table clear of everything but scrapbooking stuff and allow myself to live with the mess when I'm in the middle of pages. 
  • Most of my supplies are organized by theme, but not quite everything. I need to finish this task, so I can grab the theme I want when I'm ready to work on that page.
  • I'm not allowed to buy anything new, unless it's something absolutely necessary to finishing a page (which, let's be honest, shouldn't ever really happen with paper and stickers and accessories). I think I'll only be allowing myself to buy adhesives and solid-colored cardstock.
(Garment) Sewing:
  • Again, I can't buy anything unless it is absolutely necessary to finishing a project. I know that great linings, the right zipper, perfect buttons, etc. can really finish up the look, but let's be honest - I am a complete novice at sewing and it's unlikely that replacing stash pieces with store-bought perfection would actually perfect my garments. For now I just need to sew, and learn as I go and refine skills, and then I can worry about perfection once I feel more comfortable. 
  • Just start cutting. Again, if I'm being honest with myself, none of my fabrics are pieces that I should be afraid to cut into, as they're not vintage beauties, and they hardly cost me anything. I've got nothing to lose and everything to gain by cutting up so-so fabrics as muslins and practice pieces. Best-case scenario: I have a wearable muslin! Worst-case: I learned better for the next time.
  • Use the patterns I have (and make a list so I stop buying copies of the same patterns!). Most of them only cost me $1 each - if I screw them up that badly, I can buy them again, but they really just need to be used!
  • Refashion the things I've been meaning to refashion, and if they're not done by the end of the year, give them away! I did a decent closet purge a few months ago and took things to the resale shops, but as my items were out-of-season, the stores had no space for them. They suggested bringing them back in the spring, and since half of these items have never been worn, I'm reluctant to just give them away. So I'll make one more trip in early March, and whatever isn't bought is going straight to the Goodwill!

  • Whoa, what? I do not need to start another hobby, but I feel like this might be easier for me to accomplish than fiddling with hems and darts and fit and such. I recently came across this beauty and I know I have a million things in my stash that I could use to get a similar look.
  • Make my friend's T-shirt quilt. I probably won't see her again for ages, but I have to stop letting that be an excuse to keep her t-shirts hanging around and haunting me. I've made one of these before, and it's pretty simple, if a bit time-consuming, so it might be just the kick-start I need. Plus, I can always mail it to her when I'm done. 

  • I actually don't have much of a yarn stash anymore, and it needs to stay that way. I want to try to use up most of the rest of what I have by year's-end.
  • Make a case for my knitting needles, and maybe do some kind of swap to get rid of duplicates and fill in the sizes I'm missing.
  • Start taking projects to my boyfriend's place. That way I can feel like I've accomplished something while he's playing video games. 
  • Figure out how to finish the project I started using leftover yarn from my granny square quilt. I...have no idea at this point. It's not long enough to be a scarf, and not quite halfway to being a decent sized blanket, so we'll see.
  • Finally knit an infinity cowl. I wanted one last year, but never got around to it. I still want one, and may just have enough matching yarn to make one this year. If I keep it simple (no fancy patterns), it should come together pretty quickly.
Finally, my last resolution for the year: Buy a house (okay, probably a condo, but still)! I've been looking for about 3 months, and while part of me is already tired of it, the other part is so excited at what I might be able to do with a fixer-upper! I know a lot of people get in over their heads with them, but...I think I'm kinda fearless when it comes to that kind of thing. Plus, you know I love a bargain, and fixer-uppers can often be the way to go for that! So, assuming the home-buying does go through, I'll hopefully be posting about a lot of DIY renovation stuff, too! That is obviously where all of my new buying will be allowed. :)

This is such a long list that it almost seems doomed to failure, but when half of it is centered around not buying new crap, it can't really be THAT hard, can it? Wish me luck!


  1. Hi! I'm working on adding all of the Stash Diet ladies to my blog reader, and this post caught my eye. It's nice to see a sewing blogger who also does scrapbooking, because I don't see that too much! I'm also quite curious to see what you do with that tulle, because I seriously overestimated how much I needed for one of last year's projects and have a ton of it left!

    1. Thanks for following! As one of the other Stash Diet ladies named it, it seems I have crafting ADD. I actually used to work at a scrapbooking store and acquired a ton of stash there - time to start using it!

      I bought the tulle for this really cute skirt that I imagined would be easy to make, but apparently one of my coworkers tried the same thing and found it really difficult, so...might be a while before I get around to it, oops! :)