Well, it has been an expensive couple of months at this end with all sorts of unexpected payouts for a wide variety of mishaps, misadventures and occasionally exciting bits of fun. But it has resulted in hard times here. Plus, as I have blogged about before, I am in danger of disappearing under the mountains of ‘stuff’ I have accumulated over the years. So, I have taken the bold decision not to buy anything associated with my art/craft/textile work for a whole year. This started officially on 1 October and has already been tested with a trip to the stationery aisle of the supermarket to buy padded envelopes – but who can resist looking at the children’s marker pens and crayons? – and a fantastic bargain basement shop which had really cheap speciality papers. Picking up stuff for my work is just second nature now. But it has to stop for a while. So no half measures. it’s total withdrawal. My self-imposed rules are:
- I will not buy any art supplies/materials for one calendar year and this includes mail order. And books. I can feel the panic rising in me now…
- I can continue with my subscription to Selvedge magazine which is my treat.
- I can continue to go to workshops.
- I can buy things to help me shift things – such as frames for mounting work to give away, or possibly this year, even sell.
- I can swap or barter or receive donations.
- I can acquire found items, like the bits of metal I pick up in the street.
- I can honour existing commitments like getting things for a workshop on fabric postcards I am running with the lovely and excellent Harriet Shortt in September next year.
- I can buy absolute staples like ink for my fountain pen and glue.
- The rules don’t apply to Laura Ashley which is my current big research project, because I am trying to amass enough fabric to make a bed quilt.
This is a very tall order. The medieval historian didn’t help last night when I showed him a packet of steampunk findings from ArtChix (www.artchixstudio.com) that he really loved. ‘Oh, it doesn’t apply to lovely things like that.’ Riiight. I think it does. My girlfriends give this about six weeks. But even six weeks would represent a saving for me, and might help me use up stuff that has been hanging about for years. I think this might be an age thing. I was at a friend’s new house yesterday and she said she didn’t want to spend the rest of her life surrounded by books like she had done for the last forty years. I completely understand.
So, I will keep you posted. I think I will last three months – which will bring us up to Christmas, my favourite time of year. Will I be able to hold out against glitter? I doubt it.