Tuesday, 3 November 2015

Blame it on Social Media - overspending on craft stash

So here is a follow up post to the one I did on 'non-craft rooms'.  It was a post that somehow meandered into a discourse* on overspending on craft stash.  So I cut it into two posts.

*had to look that one up. 

I have made it tried to make it less of a sermon now.


Although, like all reformed addicts, we can be the worst critics of those who still indulge.

I do feel that Facebook has rather a lot to answer for.  This particular rant post was 'inspired' by photos people were sharing of their recent crafting purchases.  And the reactions of others to these purchases.

Now most of us will have shared pics of our crafting buys, and usually this doesn't bother me one jot.   But when I see a photo, containing in it more newly purchased dies than I own in total, it makes me stop and question 'things'.

I also have 5 of the long dies, but this is my ENTIRE collection.
And if that is the amount they bought in one splurge ...... how many others do they own?

AND *do they really use them all?*

This is the very same question that springs to mind when I see those (mainly American) craft rooms stuffed to the gills and bursting at the seams with stash.

After all if you have as much (if not more) craft stash than a small shop, is it possible to use it all?

Perhaps, just as I know I was in the past, these people have been sucked into that world created by the ad men, and reinforced by the blogs of designers.  Blogs that focus on techniques using their new products.

Products that we are made to feel we can't live without.  Products that will change our life, make us so much happier, content, slimmer (oops wrong ad men) ... you get the idea.

I admit that I have fallen into this trap in the past.

We have all made those buys...

...usually on impulse, often in a sale, and occasionally in TKMaxx...

of items we couldn't live without.  Items that we never used and ended up selling (if we were lucky), giving away or throwing away.


Over the last year I have become quite rutheless.  Other than paper and a few embellishments*, if I haven't used a craft item for 6 months I get rid of it.

*You know the ones - those that are being saved for a special occasion or page - we wouldn't be a proper crafter if we didn't have some of them!

I have thrown out or given away (thank goodness for Brownies) all those items I had been keeping 'just in case'. 

Even those dies that I thought I would use loads....

....and did use...


And what I have found is that the less stash I have the easier I find it to craft.  This may be because I like fairly 'clean' and simple LO's too.

I am freed from trying to remember what other pink papers I have to match, where exactly that perfect blue sticker is stored, or indeed how many butterfly dies I own.

I am not suggesting I can remember ALL the craft items I do have.  As my hairdresser kindly reminded me a few weeks ago, I am middle aged now

But as there are only a few boxes in total to look through, it doesn't take me too long.  And there really wasn't any point in owning dozens of different ribbons when I haven't used any in the last 2 years.


So the boxes and bags of stuff under the stairs have gone.  It was difficult to let some of it go.  I now know how my children felt when I tried to persuade them that they really didn't need 20 teddies on the end of their bed, and perhaps some of the pile of unused Lego could go.  I had moments similar to the hoarders on Obsessive Compulsive Cleaners.  But I did it.

I now control my stash diet.  If only food was as easy to control then I wouldn't have eaten 4 cakes last Friday.  They were very nice cakes though

In fact one was a mince pie.  Why do we only eat them at Christmas though?  I love a mince pie.

Whoops, I digress, as usual.  I've found that when I get the 'spend impulse' it is best to leave the items in my basket for a few days before checking out.  Then when I go back I usually end up removing them again. 

Because when I think about it rationally I already have x items that are similar to it.  Or I have NOTHING similar and therefore wouldn't use it as it isn't 'my style'.

And if it is still calling my name, like some siren trying to lure my bank balance into a ship wreck situation, at least now I know I do genuinely want it and am much more likely to use it. 

I've read about how some of you will only buy something if you can think of 3 uses for it  - an excellent idea.  I think it is time for us to fight back against the 'spend, spend, spend' ethos spread in the crafting world.

And here endeth the sermon,

Louise x


  1. Well said Louise. I agree with you about the ads & for me even the other scrappers, make you "feel" like you're not a true/real scrapper unless you have this or that & oh my I have been (emphasis have been) in the group of saving paper & stickers for that future perfect page. If I use then I don't have it to use. Oh and I was originally going to say guilty of, but I think that is so harsh on myself, that guilt word. I did a massive clear out (other than my Christmas stuff) it is neater, more organized & readily available. This year I am resolved NOT to add to my Christmas stash, I will be able to create wonderful DD pages without the latest, the greatest - I am saying NO to the Ad people, I will not sucumb to the online & F/B maddness of DD. Oh Louise, this post is just so right on, write on .... yes let's talk diet/food stash next! Shopping is not the answer for low days, sad feelings ... I repeat several times. I need to read this post again.

  2. There does seem to be a competition sometimes over who has the MOST of something - my heart goes out to those who can not afford it and can be made to feel worthless. I have vowed to start throwing out stuff that isn't getting used - this has spurred me into using those 'special' things - all our pages are special so why wait?
    Loved reading your comment and knowing I'm not alone - thanks x

  3. I have re-read twice & your post is still resonating with me. I have now taken a step to help me curb those "I must have" & feelings of being denied, by unsubscribing to several of the companies new product emails. Out of sight, out of mind. Already the load on my inbox is a statement itself. Yes this could be part of a Twelve Step Program unless of course we are using mini , then maybe a 6X8 program ...

    1. I subscribe to a bi-monthly kit (the lite version), so £10 every other month. This gives me a regular fix of goodies but it is a usable amount - it isn't stacking up and i'm not running out either. I had started forgetting things that i had bought AND i was buying more of things I already didn't use - both are daft things to do. I have stopped looking at new products because I would impulse purchase without thinking x (liked your 6x8 program - made me giggle)

  4. Yes, we are all susceptible to the ad men - sometimes it is best just to stay away from TJMaxx, Marshalls, and Tuesday Mornings as well. I can't seem to get out of any of those stores with a little scrappy haul.

  5. Oh Louise! You've struck a cord with me. I could never understand how so much could be bought in one go either. Where would hey store it? How could they possibly have the time to use it all? I think their is an element of obsessive behaviour that they need one of each in every size/font/colour. Phew at least it's not me! I like to think I use my stash up although I do have quite a bit of older stuff so could do with a purge but I've drastically reduced my purchasing this year and it's been very cathartic! Whe my kids look back at my pages they won't think "oh no she used papers from 2009 on a page in 2015! Great post x


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