Well, that was good counsel. However, there is some dosage advice to go along with it. And here it comes, along with my list of five festive wreaths for all tastes.
I said last week that I have all these different ways of bookmarking things to come back to later – Liking, Thumbs-Upping, Plus-1-ing, Pinning, Starring, and all manner of other things. It’s great – I can file these things neatly away with titles and tags and get them back out again when I have the time/money/patience/know-how (delete as appropriate). Isn’t that fantastic?
Well, yes and no. ‘Yes’ because I am in Costa Rica and I don’t have access to my craft hoard, and because I am a student/volunteer worker and don’t have an income, and because I work 8-5 and do coursework in the evenings and Skype every day with my long-distance boyfriend and travel at weekends. When things have settled down a bit, I won’t have lost out on all the things I found but couldn’t get on with while here. ‘No’ because as soon as something is titled, tagged and added to my never-ending list of ‘To Do Some Day’ projects, I instantly forget it and scroll down to find the next project.
I’m always saying to myself, ‘If you don’t bookmark this now, who knows if you’ll ever find it again? You’ll have to live without it!’ and then sometimes I reply, ‘Yes, but there are so many interesting projects out there. You’ll find something else’. And then I say ‘But what if this is better than the things I’ll end up finding later and doing?’ and so the debate begins. I usually end up concluding, ‘No harm in bookmarking it, just in case’, and thus it’s added to the heap. But there is a harm there. The harm is that when I come to bookmark something that really needs bookmarked (such as this wine cork wreath for which I’d need to collect the corks over time), the list is undermined by its sheer length, and I won’t come back and be reminded of that valuable link because the list is too daunting.
And I’m not the only one. Every one of these Web Discovery sites, which are becoming increasingly popular for obvious reasons, offer us the opportunity to come across a dozen worthwhile projects before breakfast. What’s not to love? So much inspiration, so much creativity. But also increasingly popular are blogs like this one, where writers are noticing that they have a mountain of pins stacked up on their boards, and not one finished project to date. So people are beginning to do something about it. They’re getting rid of the instant satisfaction of filing the idea away into a neat little corner to gather dust, and bringing all those Pins back out into the open, airing them out and just getting on with it.
Because Pinterest (and StumbleUpon, and Google Reader Play, and all of those things) are great. They’re fantastic for finding inspiration, for looking at pretty images, and for finding craft projects for yourself. But they’re only great for that last one if you actually do the craft one day.
That’s why I chose to write my Saturday Spotlights the way I did. I find that when I come across blog posts of “65 ways to set your Thanksgiving table” or even “20 handmade gift ideas”, I feel assaulted by all the possibilities and run for cover behind the ‘bookmark for later’ button. So I’ll be gentle with you. I’ll be posting small numbers of the very best (in my humble opinion!) examples of a craft, in a diverse range of tastes. Just enough to cater for many tastes, but few enough that you can decide on just one and actually achieve it. A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush, as they quite rightly say.
So. You now have five ideas for your festive wreaths. You’re probably only going to end up making one this year, if any. I’ll end this post with a challenge (which only applies if you were itching to bookmark one of them). The challenge is this:
It’s Saturday. You’re spending your time reading this blog. Does that mean you have free time? If you have the time to get started, even just to get started, on doing one of the projects above, I challenge you to do it. Go out and buy the materials. Gather together any wine corks you may have been saving and set up a box to collect new ones, marked ‘corks for wreath’ so you don’t forget. And if you don’t have time to get started, I challenge you to take a minute to look in your calendar, find a day when you will have time, and write it down. ‘Make Christmas wreath’. It’s a simple step. You can also add the materials to your shopping list. Anything to remind you that this is something you can get done, this week. And if you can’t do it this week, or the next, or probably the one after that… you’ll never get it done. Leave it behind. Move on. There will be more Saturday Spotlight posts next year.
As for me, I’m going to clear out my list of projects for ‘some day’. I’m going to ask myself ‘If I could do this right this minute, would I?’ And if I wouldn’t, I’m deleting it from my bookmarks. Because each bookmark on that list decreases the value of all the other bookmarks on the list. And some of them are real gems, and deserve my undivided attention. Maybe I’ll share those gems with you next week ;)
P.S. I wrote this on Thursday to be uploaded on Saturday, so as you read this I’ll probably either be hiking a volcano, sledging down said volcano, or floating happily in a Nicaraguan lagoon. Just sayin’.