Wednesday, January 23, 2013

The Scrap Book Prison

Scrapbook prison

View my prison. My scrap book prison. Oh I can hear all you scrappers out there. You are scratching your head and wondering why I am viewing this as a prison. It doesn’t look too bad I know but to me it is a prison. An overloaded, unusable, scary scrapping prison.

Somewhere in the last few years of blogging I think I mentioned that for a time I was a Creative Memories consultant. I am not a born consultant. A good consultant sells stuff to OTHER people not just to herself. A GOOD consultant makes her quarterly minimums without having to include more useless overhead for herself that she is never going to use in a million years of scrapbooking.

I was not a good consultant.

I was not a good consultant for a number of years. Long enough to buy enough paper and punches and albums and stickers and scrapping paraphernalia to sink a large battleship. Don’t get me wrong, I have used my scrapbooking materials over the years. I have enjoyed them. I have spread them out and looked at them. I have clasped them to my ample mammaries and basked in the glow of my hoard. And it was a hoard no matter which way you looked at it. When I started with scrapbooking I was still in the “inflow” stage of my life, the stage where if I started doing something I had to collect ALL of the toys never thinking about the fact that there might be a time when I wouldn’t want so much stuff. Inflow never outflow. My hoard made me happy. My hoard kept me company. My hoard helped me feel better about myself.

Isn’t that what a hoard does at first? It makes you feel better about yourself. It is your friend. It loves you and gives you affirmation and a pat on the back and a Well Done Old Chap! Or at least your hoard wants you to think that when all the time it is sucking the joy out of your life and actually making you feel awful about yourself.

Believe me when I say that the picture you are seeing now is NOTHING like what the stash looked like at the height of my CM craze. Half the basement was set up as scrap booking workstation. Good golly I shudder at the thought of it now. When we put Chez Knit up for sale the first time around I was ordered encouraged to pack it ALL up and put it away because no person in their right mind would want to see all that scrapping stuff. And so I did, grumbling all the way. And during that almost year process when the house refused to sell, a funny thing happened. I didn’t really miss the hoard all that much. I didn’t really even think about it all that much after a time. Oh I missed scrapbooking don’t get me wrong. I like to scrap. It is an extension of my creativity just as my knitting, sewing, cooking/baking and photography are.

As Neil Gaiman would say, “Whatever you do…Make. Good. Art.”

And so, when the house was off the market for a bit I unpacked all the stuff and put it back, intending to pick up where I left off. Happy in my scrappy hoard.

But I wasn’t happy at all. In fact, when I would go downstairs to do some work I just couldn’t. I was paralyzed by all the choices presented to me.

I would stand there for a bit and survey all that needed to be done.

I would lay out a page and look at the hoard and wonder what paper, from the innumerable different patterns and colors, I should use. And what stickers would be perfect or perhaps I would cut something out with my Circuit. And then there were the other embellishments that I might use.

I would fiddle.

I would crop a bit, I might even get a page or two done half heartedly.

I would look at my phone to see if I had any emails.

I would think that I need another cup of coffee and then I was done. I just couldn’t do any scrapping because there were TOO MANY choices for what I wanted to use. And there was so much to be done that I was paralyzed.

In fact, as of this moment I have produced perhaps 4 pages in the past TWELVE MONTHS. It is amazingly pitiful and saddening. My creative scrapping joy is gone.

But there is hope I hope. I am cleaning out and paring down and selling. My scrapping area must be de-bulked like a tumor that is killing me. For it is killing me, or at least a part of me that was so very creative and filled with joy.

And I miss my creative joy. I miss it so very much.

1 comment:

  1. oh, I get this exactly, even though I've never done scrapbooking (in spite of quite a bit of encouragement from friends). The inflow/outflow phases of life and the way that your hoard feels good at first and then becomes a burden.... yup. thanks, as I'm in the midst of trying to de-hoard around here, too.


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