project :: doing it your way

Since I decided to send out my photos to be printed (wanted to check out the quality of my local drugstore) I am not quite finished constructing the minibook that I wanted to share today. So, in lieu of that project post, I thought I would share another one of my ongoing projects.

This may seem less like a project to some, but for me...well, it's something I work on every day.

I have been papercrafting most of my life and scrapbooking, in it's current form, for just about ten years. I've seen trends come and go...not just in scrapbooking but in everything. I have been alive since the early 70's so I have seen many things come and go and come again. When I first started scrapbooking I


I loved the idea of mixing my English lit background with my somewhat recently acquired design skills. I loved telling my story and documenting my life in a way that felt authentic to me. And I will admit...I loved all the stuff. The eyelets and brads and buttons oh MY! I became a collector of scrapbooking accoutrement, and the more I collected the less I scrapped. It took me a few years before I completely burnt out. In those few years I taught regular workshops at my local scrapbook store, I attended CHA and I got to meet some industry insiders and you know what happened? I realized...
scrapbooking is a business, and as a consumer...a devoted one, I was allowing the "business" to dictate my style.

The business told me:

owls are in but other birds are out. Modern is in vintage is out...unless you are so and so...she can do vintage because it's HER thing. Stickers are out rubons are in...oh, hold on we spoke too fast...stickers are back in again. Diecuts are OUT, punches are in...but then before you know it Diecuts are back...fancy machines to diecut at HOME are the new thing. No doubt there are a lot of people who know exactly what I'm talking about.

So one day...about 5 years ago, I turned off the chatter. I stopped subscribing to scrapbook magazines. I stopped visiting my favorite message board and I just stopped scrapbooking and indulged my other loves. I reveled in technology and design, I crocheted, I read books and traveled. My life was wonderful except

I missed it. I missed telling my stories. I missed all the tools and the bits and pieces. I missed the act of documenting my life...complete with stickers and birds.

I knew that if I returned it would be on my own terms. I had just begun to discover blogs and the online scrapbooking community and it satisfied my love of scrapbook talk. I realized that I no longer knew what was cool and that made me feel liberated. I started incorporating all my old stuff with some of the new stuff that appealed to me. I started making my own embellishments way before etsy existed. I found a way to be involved in a wonderful community without allowing the "Business" of scrapbooking to influence me.

Does that mean that I don't check out some of my favorite scrapbook sites to see what was new at the recent CHA-no way, of course I want to know. I like being aware of the trends in many different areas...even if I have no plans to subscribe to those trends. The industry didn't change, I did. I suddenly realized that this hobby was for me. Nobody else really cared. I've never submit my work for publication, my own blog following is relatively small. No one was going to care if I used old paper or outdated embellishments...or my own handmade embellishments...maybe they might even like it.

and they did. That's why I have an etsy shop now. Who knows if people will always care about the little things I make. I prefer not to concern myself with that and remember what I truly love

...me, in the dead of night...humming softly, trimming paper...telling stories and making things.


Malou said...

I totally agree with you! I have always loved your mini albums thank you for making it for us!

Diana said...

Love this post.
And if I'm correct I think I "found" you just when you were tiptoeing back into scrapbooking-land, so I feel very lucky as I didn't know this entire backstory.

elizabeth rosemond said...

so fantastic!! some time ago, i found myself in the exact same place. i was able to rediscover my love for the craft by simply turning off the noise!! bravo :)

Diana said...

Me again ;-)
I did the post you suggested: http://wickysticket.blogspot.com/2011/04/basic-scrapbooking-supplies-part-2.html
And tell me if you notice anything different... heeeeee ;-) what do you think?