Posts Tagged ‘chaos’

Remembering a Lost Empire

November 11, 2015

Today is Veteran’s Day, which used to be Armistice Day, which got me thinking about lost empires, which is why I’m going to compare my sewing room to the Austro-Hungarian Empire. My husband’s to-do list and mine hit a rare convergence, where he wanted to install shelves in my sewing room just when I was considering how I could persuade him to let me pull out the various bins and bags to re-organize them. This is certainly more positive than the inciting incident of World War I, the assassination of Franz Ferdinand, but equally as unexpected. It also resulted in a total restructuring of the sewing room as significant (to me at least) as what happened in Central Europe. This was the shape of my Empire of Piles on the eve of the great change.

Chaos

Chaos

I moved bins and stacks and bags and piles and heaven only knows what into the living room, then attacked the dust. The battle was long and fierce. Seriously, I think some of those dust bunnies were on the verge of developing language skills. When the battlefield was clean, we imposed the new structure.

New borders

New borders

Once the shelves were up, I had to reorganize. My bins were supposed to resolve themselves into autonomous units, but as with the fallen empire the reality proved far different. Some bins were practically empty, hollow cases that I imagined held treasure but which ended up being filled with something else. The mixing in the bins and bags surprised me. Labels meant nothing. I found florals with the stripes, orphan blocks hiding under fat quarters, beads where you would never expect them. Eventually, I managed to set up several sovereign states.

Accurately labeled bins

Accurately labeled bins

Even better, I managed to clear a corridor for easy navigation to the sewing machine.

Now I can move my chair with ease

Now I can move my chair with ease

Of course, there were some casualties – and some refugees. Although I grieved over every scrap, some fabrics could not be saved. Other items have found their way into a holding bin, and I hope to relocate them soon.

Luck and wisdom!

The Year In Review – Take One

December 17, 2014

This is the time of year for reviewing the balance sheet of projects completed versus projects attempted. I expect that I will reframe my achievements and shortcomings more than once before the end of the year, so here is The Year In Review – Take One.

Not quite clear enough for dancing, but I can get to my fabric

Not quite clear enough for dancing, but I can get to my fabric

The sewing room isn’t entirely organized. I’m beginning to think the universe will end if I ever get everything under control, or maybe that’s just the excuse I use to justify the continued chaos. Still and all, the floor in front of my fabric drawers is navigable, and has been for nearly two months. This is a major victory.

Yes, that is the diary of River Song - holding my space Viking notes

Yes, that is the diary of River Song – holding my space Viking notes

The third installment in The Chenille Series – The Chenille Ultimatum – isn’t done, nor is my planned novel about space Vikings. I have, however, been organizing my notes, making better scene outlines, filling in holes in my character profiles – all things that will make for better writing. This may not be a victory, but it is progress.

Not a partridge, not a pear tree, still fun

Not a partridge, not a pear tree, still fun

We have a decorated Christmas tree. There was a question about whether we would have one, since our daughter is the one who does the bulk of the decorating and she won’t be home this year. The joy of the season won out over my natural laziness, and I brought out the decorations. In the process, I also found the box for the Easter decorations. After I finished trimming the tree, I put away the Easter eggs that had been on display for the past two years. This is also a victory, although if I had any sense I wouldn’t admit to it.

Luck and wisdom!

The Godzilla In Me

May 21, 2014

 

It’s too bad I don’t have any Hollywood connections. My sewing room would have made a wonderful set for the new Godzilla movie.

Lani Longshore sewing table

After the Big Guy stomps through

Like Godzilla, I can cause chaos and mayhem just by walking through the space. I tell myself it is the creative impulse, that I work best surrounded by inspiring fabrics and embellishments. Then I look at the floor and realize I just can’t say no to shiny things and pretty fabric.

Waiting for attention

Waiting for attention

These are the collections of inspiring stuff I hope to get to at some point in my lifetime. I come from healthy stock, but even I have to admit the chances of me finishing all these projects is somewhere between fat and slim.

Makes me wonder if the Big Guy had these moments of creative angst.

Roar!

Roar!

Luck and wisdom!

 

Life Happens

January 3, 2013

I had every intention of putting things in boxes last week. It didn’t happen. Like the darkness before the dawn, my sewing room got more crowded. It seemed the only solution would be to rent a dumpster.

My studio, my scary room

My studio, my scary room

Then I had a moment of clarity, and realized this was just another good news-bad news situation. The bad news is I’ve been blogging about organizing my sewing room for three years and it’s still a mess. The good news is, the mess changes. I do make progress, but then life happens and I’ve got another mess. They key words in that sentence are life happens. I’m alive, and I’m being creative. If occasional chaos is the price of creativity, I’m happy to pay.

In another good news-bad news situation, other members of the family decided to include clear-outs, clean-ups and reorganizations in their New Year to-do lists.

I need to find another place for these

I need to find another place for these

The bad news is some of those clear-outs – such as the book collection cull – will require my attention. The good news is that I might be able to take advantage of the mess to disguise some of my piles as I’m sorting them. In chaos, there is profit.

Finally, we still have the Christmas mess to contend with.

Santa filled the stockings, then left the wrapping supplies

Santa filled the stockings, then left the wrapping supplies

So, chaos rules in my house on the first days of 2013. We will do battle, chaos and I. Don’t tell me if you bet on chaos to win.

In Chaos There Is Opportunity

May 9, 2012

The best thing about taking classes is the new project. The worst thing about taking classes is the new project. I had a project going, brought a project back from Santa Fe, and discovered upon my return that a project I thought I could delay until July needs to be done now. No wonder my creative space looks like this:

While staring at the piles and wondering where to start, I decided to begin with what doesn’t work. Turns out what doesn’t work most is the great idea I had for stacking bins of cut squares.

There isn’t room to move the bins around. I suppose I should have realized there will never be room to move things around, but there’s nothing like experience to help you recognize a mistake when you make it again. So, on to Plan B. Pause for dramatic effect – and . . . nothing.

While waiting for Plan B to make its way into my consciousness, I scanned the piles once again:

and again:

Still no plan. Ah, well. This is what life comes to sometimes – fall down six times, get up seven. In the next week I will choose a corner every day, and pick up what’s in that corner. It’s going to be a long week, but in chaos there is opportunity.