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blogtober day 21 // use the good stuff

blogtober day 21 // use the good stuff

I’ve always struggled with using my favourite supplies. What if I use all of that fabric, but it goes out of stock and I can never use it again? What if I use that patterned paper but there’s a photo down the line that would better suit it? What if I start writing in that notebook but my story/doodles/planning/whatever sucks and I abandon it five pages in? What if the project is not right and my supplies go to waste?

Over the past couple of years as we shift into a simpler, more decluttered life, I’ve slowly started to work on breaking that mindset – what’s the point of a “perfect” supply if it’s forever trapped in a cupboard? As I unpack, I’ve come across the real waste of craft supplies. It’s not using them on an “inferior project” (whatever that means), but it’s NOT using them.

It turns out, craft supplies aren’t Vegemite. You can’t shove them in the back of the cupboard, ignore them for years, and expect them to still be there in perfect condition and capable of surviving a nuclear apocalypse.

Multiple rolls of washi, yellowed and solidified into an unpeelable lump? Binned

Blue sludge from my attempt at lamp work beads, dried and crumbled? Binned

Waxed thread for book binding, tangled and knotted beyond redemption? Binned

It hurt, to throw out these “just in case” “one day” “don’t want to waste” supplies. They serve as a reminder to use the good stuff, that supplies are meant to be used, that using them is never wasting them.

What would bring me more joy? Using up all the sludge and all the glass making beads that weren’t quite right, but were fun to make? Or the knowledge that the glass is there if I ever get the urge? Spoiler – even if I do get the urge, I now can’t actually make the beads, because I don’t have the sludge.

What would bring me more joy? An album full of layouts with strips of that pretty floral washi? Or a drawer full of washi just in case the “perfect” project comes along? What about the thread? A bunch of journals with a not-quite-right blue on the binding? Or no journals bound (because I was hunting for “perfect”), and thread that’s now unusable.

As I sort and organise and start to make again, it will be tempting to add a little something something to my stash. But stash is only useful if it’s being USED, otherwise it’s a waste. Supplies gathering dust in the cupboard are not good to anyone. If I’m going to the effort to move and organise and label all these belongings, I’m surely going to use them. I’m going to let go of being precious about my stash.

It’s time to use the good stuff.

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