Wednesday, 12 November 2014

My confession

Dear friends, I hope you will indulge me a little.

When I started this blog just over a year ago, I was pretty much a one at a time stitcher. I had one UFO and I hoped blogging would motivate me to complete it.


I quickly grew to love blogging and like so many was enabled to buy lots of stash. One of the first stitching blogs I came across was that of the late SoCal Debbie. I was in awe of her ability to work on so many projects at once and was soon part of her Bothy Threads Cut Thru Monday SAL, working on this lovely piece...


Soon I had signed up for the Crazy January Challenge 2014. 15 new starts later I suddenly had a huge pile of WIPs. Some of which were huge projects in their own right...

Then I discovered Heaven and Earth Designs and now have two HAEDs on the go plus another kitted up.

And then there were the exchanges...just the four of them this year...

And then I committed to 31 new starts in January in Debbie's memory...

Can you guess where this is heading? That's right. Burnout. I feel such guilt over my languishing WIPs/UFOs that stitching is becoming a source of stress rather than pleasure.

So, I'm saying enough is enough. I am going to work on one WIP at a time, with perhaps a mini project on the go for my train ride to/from work. I'm going to finish things I start. And I will be bowing out of Debbie's Ultimate Crazy January Challenge because new starts were Debbie's thing and not mine.

But because I miss her blog posts and want to honour her in my own way I'll be finishing the North Pole House and next year I will start and finish this piece in her memory, a project she encouraged me to buy as she shared my love of this story...

I hope all my readers will understand if there is a bit less variety on my blog but I hope you will stick with me and cheer me on to reduce my WIP list and rediscover my love of stitching.

Justine

40 comments:

Cricket-bug Corner said...

I am with ya sister! It's unload a little or give up the bunch! I had a million patterns and it was stressing me out so I cleaned it up ahhh! I can't talk about my wips! Do what you need to to enjoy YOUR hobby! It's not for someone else to say what you should do!

Diann said...

The idea of stitching is to bring you happiness or to reduce stress, and you should approach it in whatever way is right for you. It sounds like that's exactly what you are doing, so Bravo!

Mii Stitch said...

Fair play to you sweetie!! Debbie would understand, I'm sure :)
You stitch what makes you happy....
I adore the wizard of oz chart!!! Really can't wait to see this one.
Hugs xxx

Sally said...

Hello Justine

You must enjoy your stitching so if doing one project at a time works for you then go for it! I'm a one project at a time stitcher who throws a small one in now and again.
I'm sure your blog visitors will still enjoy reading about and looking at your current wip.
A lovely thought to remember Debbie by stitching a piece she encouraged you to buy.
Best wishes x

stitchersanon said...

Oh sweetie, I am sure Debbie wouldn't mind at all. All she seemed to care about was a love of stitching and having fun doing it. As long as your stitching brings you a smile, I think she would be smiling along with you. I cannot do more than one at a time: I get really REALLY stressed. I put myself under so much pressure it is beyond belief. So just stitch what you want and go back to having fun.

Kaelyn Angelfoot said...

Interesting isn't it, how the WIP pile can snowball? It seems like I'm always finding something new I'm interested in. More power to you, may your evenings be stitchyfull and you completion quests successful.

Margie said...

I think Debbie's chief message was always the love of stitching. And you need to get back to that, not try to emulate any one else's style. I personally love watching people's progress when they work one thing steadily. Something about the freeze frame/flip book aspect of a project coming together is so satisfying to me. Maybe because I'm new to stitching and it let's me see how people tackle their projects?

Margie said...

Oh, but you didn't say which WIP is at the top of the pile?

Heather Bybee said...

I try to work on as few projects as possible because I love finishes :). I actually have two/three gifts I want to have finished for next year so I'm pretty much going to be doing those exclusively over the next year in order. The first is a tinkerbell kit for my husbands friend which is fairly small for Christmas this year. The next is Tilton crafts setting sail for a wedding next October and the last is Tilton crafts howling for Christmas next year.

Barb said...

I am one of those stitchers that work on one project at a time. Once in a great while I might be doing two seasonal ones(like now). I really don't like changing out projects. I think it is just what each stitcher is comfortable with.

sharine said...

I could understand how they would feel overwhelming. Good luck with your new plans:)

Katrina said...

I joined a challenge on FB that's called 'Work from Stash in 2015' and it's all about just finishing what you have, so maybe you could start something like that on your blog. :)

Neilteil said...

I can't wait to see some finishes. :) you go girl!

homeschooljewelrymom said...

You stitch what makes you happy, sweetie :-) That's all Debbie would want of you. Enjoy your finishes!

EvalinaMaria said...

Of course I will understand and enjoy watching every project you're working on. And, of course, I'm doing not just the CJC but Super Duper Ultimate Crazy one. And lately I'm 'one project' girl....

Linda said...

Hi Justine. I must admit that I am really going to miss seeing all your new starts in January. But, I also understand what your saying. You stitch the way it makes you feel happy.

I use to be a one at a timer up until about 5 years ago and I found blogland. I was only stitching on Happy Camper a few months ago and to be honest, I really got tired of working on it. I now enjoy working on lots of different pieces each month.

Looking forward to seeing your progress on which ever one you pick.

Linda

Mrs. GraceWorks said...

Not sure if my comment took, but good for you!!!!!

Preeti said...

You must do what you like because these things are to feel happy about. I know that I cannot keep up with so many things at a time and I have to crochet too, so I never tried to challenge myself. I was tempted to go for HAED but I dropped the idea as I saw it might take ages to complete and the project will outlive me.
Last month I decided not to join any annual SAL but since yours was for one month I joined. Eventhough I have many WIPs(not more than 12) , I end up working on only 1-3 pieces at a time. If you don't mind I will suggest you to keep atleast one small and one big so that you will have an option to switch over in case you get bored. I am going to start some more new WIPs irrespective of any challenges and I will stitch at my liberty :)
Enjoy the journey of happiness ........don't load yourself:)

Rachel Tomkins said...

Many years ago I used to be a one-at-a-time stitcher. But then along came the internet and blogland and with them the discovery that there are so many and such a variety of charts out there that temptation took over. Stashing and starting many projects became the norm, as it has for many stitchers.
So I know exactly how you feel about being bogged down. Everybody's different and you must do what you feel happy with. The stitching community will be behind you all the way, whatever you decide. :)

Irene said...

ti capisco benissimo! I tuoi lavori sono stupendi

Shebafudge said...

Everyone stitches differently. It's what you've been up to that I come to read about and if that means I only get to one project, that's fine! Stitch whatever makes you happy :) Maybe your sensible head will rub off on me!!!

Annette-California said...

The most important thing is that you stitch what makes you happy. I too have put a few wips aside and have been stitching on one project. It's great to be able to get one project done and on display for our enjoyment. Debbie would not be disappointed. She would just care that you be happy!!! I love seeing what ever you've been working on. HUGS - love Annette

Stitching Angel said...

It's all good, stitch what you want, I love anything you stitch and I think so many others do as well. If it's just one so be it. I thought I was a one at a time stitcher untill I did my blog and found all the one's I had forgotten about over time. Do what makes you happy.

Annie said...

I get stressed out in January just reading about all the new starts for the Crazy Challenges! You stitch what you love, and we will be right here, cheering you on:)

Suz said...

This is supposed to be your hobby, which you are supposed to enjoy. If stitching one at a time is how you do it, then do it that way, no stitcher would *ever* tell you the right way to do it or make you feel otherwise.

Personally, I totally admire the one at a time stitchers, I am completely incapable of that kind of focus, though I'm trying to whittle my WIPs/UFOs down... that plan seems to be failing, though ;)

I love that Wizard of Oz piece - it's absolutely beautiful!

Katie said...

I'm with everyone here so far. You gotta do what makes you happy girl. I used to model stitch and stitching became a job. I hated it. I hated picking up my own pieces cause the stress of I needed to get the other one done. As soon as I started hating it I quit. This hobby is about fun and our love of stitching we just can't force it. I will definitely be right here reading every post no matter what you stitch and cheering you on. Smile and we will smile too.

Sarah in Stitches said...

I definitely hear you. I'm a one-at-a-time girl too, though at the moment I've got two going on and an exchange in the works, but the little piles of kits on my desk are making me antsy. I love that Wizard of Oz chart! Who's the designer?

Kaisievic said...

Justine, sounds like you are being very wise - this is meant to be a fun hobby and a source of relaxation not stress. I will come visit your blog no matter how much or little you stitch!

Brigitte said...

I am just the other kind of stitcher. I used to stitch only one project at a time but I was always longing to stitch on different projects - until I gave in and started something new while the old project wasn't finished yet. And this felt so great that I have never finished starting new things and adding to my pile of WIPs. It really makes me happy to go through them all. So, we are all very different :)
When I go to a blog I enjoy to see what everyone is stitching on, no matter if it's always the same piece or not. It will be the same with yours.

Thoeria said...

:) You know my feelings on this one Justine . Couldn't agree more! I'm trying to get back to being a no more than 3 at a time stitcher....one HUGE project (my HAED) one largish project....and something smaller that can be finished in a month or so!
We all stitch for one reason.....because we LOVE doing it....when this becomes a stress related activity then it's time to re-evaluate why we stitch and look at ways to bring back the joy.
I'm looking forward to seeing which project you'll be picking up :)

Sally said...

You have to do what is right for you, Justine, not what is right for others. It's your hobby and it shouldn't be stressful so you've made the right choice.

I used to be a one at a timer but I can't do that anymore and even though I don't have loads of things on the go I get snowed under sometimes.

Lovely project to stitch in Debbie's memory.

Andrea said...

I have never had a lot of stitching on the go all at once. I don't think I could cope with more than 2! I am a one at a time stitcher and I don't think that will ever change.

Rachel said...

Glad you're doing what makes you the happiest--here to cheer you on!

(I just love the Wizard of Oz chart...it's the first time I've seen it!)

rosey175 said...

I can't keep track of so many projects at once and admire those who can! I usually have 3-4 going on and that's more than enough for me since I can't ever find substantial time to work on them anyway! If there were more starts, the house would be a mess too as I'm a very untidy crafter haha.

Hobbies are best when you take them at your own pace and enjoy them! Just think of all the progress you'll see on one project at a time. :D

Michelle said...

I can sympathise with you. I remember one year I took on too much with round robins and exchanges and I was so stressed by the time I had finished I vowed never to do it again. Do what is right for you and what makes you happy my friend. By the way you will be the first to know if I decide to sell the stitching box I promise xxx

Lumiruusu said...

Yes I totally understand You-as very social and outgoinig person/blogger I soon was in that same situation .I had far too manu swaps ,ans WIPS from my CJC.s. NOw I hope I have learned my lesson and take it much more easier.. Hope we both find the balance

Miamina said...

I'm glad that you have worked out what is good for YOU! There are many different ways of approaching stitching and finding out what works for you is great. I know I start to feel overwhelmed and stressed when I have a lot of WIP's but I do like variety to I know that cutting back a bit to a number I feel comfortable with is best.

Debbie would want you to do what makes stitching enjoyable and have fun!

RuthB said...

Hey, there aren't XS police -- and this is supposed to be fun. Here's to you working out what works for you....... I have certainly a place on the roster of Most UFOs in North America so there will be no aspersions cast from my direction. :)

Jacquie Morris said...

I love your blog!! I love what you stitch... your stitching is wonderful and just love the projects you do. Your way more braver than me.. taking on HAEDS!! Oh my!! And all your projects are coming along brilliantly too :)
Smiles :)

The Crazy Thread Lady said...

You have made the best decision, you must stitch for yourself and your pleasure. Good luck ! :)