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Well-Stocked vs. Hoarding: When to Draw the Line

January 4th, 2012 § 6 comments § permalink

Creative Options Bead Organizer

Every project needs supplies. No one can deny a swatch of fabric, a vial of beads, or new paints can inspire more ideas. I love going shopping for supplies! Who doesn’t? I get giddy when I see my fabric stash, art supplies, bead stores, and felt packs are running low.

For the shopaholics in us, this is the perfect excuse to go mad. It’s a dangerous habit. Instead of supplies, you are buying possibilities and it’s a heady, addictive experience. This is how hoarding starts. Let’s face it- unless you live in a giant mansion or a castle, you won’t have the space to store everything you continue to buy or have the funds to do so.

In the past, I had the mentality of a hoarder. I see the endless possibilities in so many things. I would remnant dive every time I visited the fabric store. I always went on the hunt at the antique market for interesting finds. I got off on the high of “overstocking”. I can never start or even begin to think about a project unless I have all the items I needed. Needless to say, there were many projects I never started because I rationalized to myself that I didn’t have everything I needed to start. I got to a point when I realized I wasn’t really shopping for supplies anymore. I was just shopping for the sake of shopping. It wasn’t about creating anymore.

If you haven’t crossed the line yet, here are two tips to help curb the hoarding and be “well-stocked” :

  • Choose a limit: This means you choose how much of a type of supply you will acquire. This can easily be determined using the criteria of space. For instance, I have limited my fabric hoard to a pantry and two large rubber tubs. My beads are limited to a plastic shoe box, a small container, and the organizer I posted above. My embroidery floss is in a large special organizer. My embroidery floss balls are in two-three clear plastic containers. My felt stores are limited to one rolling cabinet. This is the physical and mental barrier I’ve placed on myself. I won’t get anything until my stock runs low. I have more than plenty to start and supply any project adequately. If I’m missing a particular color, I can pick it up at the store. Setting a spatial limit is the key to stop needlessly acquiring.
  • Destash and appraise your current stock: Look at every item and realistically ask yourself if you truly need it. Are you really going to make that project with those plastic handles and forks? How are you going to do it? When do you plan on getting it done? Is this just a wistful possibility with no plan of follow through? Free time is precious and you will need to prioritize. These are tough questions for a consummate hoarder because throwing out an object represents an idea or unfulfilled project. Supply items are items. They only begin to have meaning once something is created from them. It represents potential. Potential is just potential when nothing is done. However, when something is accomplished, potential truly reaches its namesake.

Ideally, you want to be in between “Honey, I gotta go to the store to pick up supplies because I have none.” and “OMG! I can’t find anything in my craft room because it looks like the craft fairy exploded.” The urge to use everything and let nothing go to waste is strong. It’s a great principle to apply to what you currently have not what you want to get. You’ll need to ask yourself tough questions. Remember, the less you have the easier it will be to organize.

Are you a hoarder or are you well-stocked?

— Rosey

PS. I will be taking comments/suggestions on my giveaway post until this Friday. Monday, I will post the chosen subject matter of my giveaway. 😀


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