17 October 2011

Doing it myself.

I love Etsy, and Pinterest, and I love "do it yourself" projects (aka DIY).  I love the idea of making an old wine bottle into a rustic farmhouse vase with just a ball of twine, or crafting paper flowers from old paint swatches, or fashioning felt coasters that slip over the base of your wine glass as a built-in coaster (Monica Gellar from "Friends," anyone?).  I always think, "I can totally do that," or "what a cute idea!"

But here is what tends to happen when I embark on DIY projects: I get damn impatient.  For some ridiculous reason or another that I can never articulate, I decide to take some kind of crafting shortcut that, in hindsight, is very obviously idiotic.  My impatience yields sloppiness, so my own DIY outcomes pretty much never come close to what I see in the magazine or blog photos.  I decide to buy a different color twine, or use wallpaper instead of paint swatches, or get different variations of felt, and thus manage to sabotage my projects from the start.

Slip-on felt coasters
I really hate this about myself, but I'm not too sure how to remedy my impatience; it feels as though it's a laziness so ingrained in my psyche that I don't even recognize its presence in my projects until it's too late.

It also tends to encourage in me a certain level of skepticism about some projects; when I see something like a fuzzy felt slip-on coaster for wine glasses, I think to myself, "that's ridiculous; just use a regular coaster!"  I suppose, in this way, it can be construed as a positive flaw: my imperfection and tendency to screw up a perfectly reasonable DIY project actually manifests boundaries and tells me when to say "when" so that, to my boyfriend's benefit, my apartment is not covered in homemade burlap curtains, felted flower pillows, chalkboard coffee mugs, or upcycled book page lanterns.

I WANT all those things in my home, but I know I'd probably screw them up and ruin the intrinsic virtue that "DIY" is supposed to carry with it in the first place.

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