You guys are chock full of organizing ideas, funny stories and admissions, and comforting statements about how I’m so not alone in my disorganized state! And it’s good to hear from those of you who are ahead of the game — it gives me hope! Thank you all for playing along and chiming in.
As of noon yesterday, my big pile and my cutting table didn’t look any better than they did the first time I showed them to you. In fact, the cutting table looked worse, because I was dragging stuff out of the pile on the floor and putting it on the table! It brought on a bit of panic because I gave us this same task last year, and I was unable to do it. That means my cutting table has not been clean in probably TWO years!
I was bound and determined to get it cleared off, so I gave myself a good talking to, turned on the classic rock, and dove in.
First, I had to clean out a chest of drawers, some shelves, and a closet, so I would have places to put the things I took out of the pile and off the cutting table. I also got rid of quite a few things and a couple other piles in the process, so it wasn’t necessarily a bad thing. I also found projects I had forgotten about that were not previously on my list . . . ahem! Feeling completely overwhelmed by 2:30, I had to go take a nap, and then try again!
And as of this morning, here is my cutting table! I’m so amazed with it, I just want to keep staring at it — it really feels very weird to walk into this room and have the large pile in the floor gone and this table so clear — it’s like something’s missing, or I’m not in the right room! Only two projects out — a pile of pillowcases I’ll be sewing up real soon, and the t-shirt quilt I’m working on for my daughter’s best friend. So organized — haha!
Below you can see the area where the pile used to be. I’m quite impressed with myself — just give me this moment to gloat about it a bit — haha! I have plans to mount another smaller design wall on this empty wall, but first this pile needed to be gone, so now I’m ready. The sheer size of the dust bunnies I uncovered was frightening! I raised so much dust I started sneezing.
While that was quite a gargantuan task (two tasks, actually), the more difficult task over the next year will be to keep it this way. My friend, Barb, says “Just clean it off every night when you’re done,” but I’m not sure I can do that. I at least hope I can clean it off after every project.
I need to learn to put the leftover pieces and tools from a finished project away before I start on the next one. However, given that I work on many projects all at once, this might prove difficult for me, too. My current plan is to post a photo of my cutting table once a month and see if that bit of accountability will keep me in line, and to only keep two (OK, maybe 3) projects out at a time, rather than 40. Wish me luck!
I also have some other piles that need to go, and several other areas to clean up, but having this bit of organization under my belt is inspiring me to tackle those very soon. I will admit that I did move a few things from one pile to another — for example, all my un-quilted tops went into the to-be-quilted pile; but that’s allowed, since I can’t quilt them all at the same time, and now they’re all together in one place.
As for my Project Assessment, I updated all my lists. I also picked my 12 main projects and put them on the list I keep on the wall at my desk. I’ll tell you about those in a separate post coming up.
And do you remember me saying that my UFO list had 137 things on it, just like the year before? Well, while I was going through all the piles, cleaning out drawers and closets, and clearing off my cutting table, the list grew to 197. Shameful! And that’s after getting rid of some! And I’m not sure I’ve found them all yet!
To clarify, I call everything a UFO, so some have been languishing in piles, and some are actively being worked on. And 55 of them are finished tops waiting to be quilted! Several of the older ones I have chosen to downsize considerably, using the parts I have completed already to simply get them finished. Others I’m actually combining, disassembling, or giving away. They have to go. And I’m still going through piles. And I desperately want to start a new project — I am a sick person!
I’m telling myself that for every new project I start, I have to finish 3 projects first. So . . . before I can start cutting pieces for this new project, I have to choose three others to finish first. I have several that are close, but still . . . Do you know how hard this is gonna be for me? Yikes! And I’m afraid to go through any more piles until I’ve finished a few things, or the list might go over 200, and I can’t let that happen.
So now, I wanna hear from you again . . .
What did you learn from doing these tasks?
Did you find some things you’ve been looking for or forgot you had?
Did your UFO list get longer? or shorter?
Does your clean sewing space feel wonderful and inspiring now?
Did you start a new project? Are you fixin’ to?
Did you make any new rules for yourself to keep yourself in line this year?
Should I be embarrassed and ashamed of my above revelations? (Yes!)
And now, how about those prizes?
As usual, I’m giving prizes that are meant to help you get more organized and not add to your clutter, since you just worked so hard to clean things up. There’s a prize for each task, so here we go . . .
Task #1: Pam Chinn
Task #2: Diane Jarvis
Task #3: Sandy
Congratulations to the winners, a HUGE thank you to everyone who played along, and we’ll certainly do it again at the end of this year!
And . . . if you’d like some organizing challenges in between, stay tuned for a post coming soon about that!