Confessions of a serial UFO collector

Search the catalogueThis is not a post about flying saucers. I wish it was.

Instead it is a shame-faced, but public, confession that I am a serial unfinisher. My house is full of UnFinished Objects, and my desk drawers are overflowing with photocopied instructions for papier mache owls, bracelets made from bottletops, fairy houses for the garden, artisan cheesemaking pamphlets, pallet bookcases …

I have rubbish bags full of rusty metal things, at least half a dozen broken umbrella frames, hundreds of fat quarters, and an overflowing box of mismatched and unusable jewellery bits. I have plastic Easter eggs, sheets of stickers, seven types of glue and a heat gun.

On my couch this very minute is a knitted picture frame, still to be sewn together, blocked and hung on the wall; one-and-a-third knitted socks; and four books on beaded embroidery, Scandinavian quilting, found object crafting, and paper art.

I’m telling you this because July’s theme here at the library is Creating. I was thinking about this the other day, and making big plans to create something cool and crafty (for “create”, substitute “go shopping, buy lots of stuff to take home and leave on the table for 7 weeks, then put in a bag in the cupboard”). Then I thought, NO. This madness must end. July must not be the month of adding yet more UFOs to my house, but instead must be the Month Where Bronnypop Finishes All The Things She Hasn’t Yet Finished And In The Process Makes Mr Bronnypop A Happy Man – MWBFATTSHYFAITPMMRAHM. Catchy title, right?

And I can even make this into a work-related thing:  remember we often talk about the Five Book Challenge?  How about the Five UFO Challenge?  This month, why not join me in finding FIVE UFOs in your house, and committing to actually finishing them? I’ll post my progress if you also comment below …

If you need inspiration, check out some of the library’s books on arty-crafty recycling, but remember: the aim is to FINISH what you’ve started, NOT to start something new.

Unless of course it’s utterly amazing, and clearly needs to be begun tonight, and you PROMISE you’ll finish it.

13 thoughts on “Confessions of a serial UFO collector

  1. keenanj 9 July 2013 / 1:28 pm

    One half finished jersey for my daughter (yes, yes it will get done – sometime), embroidery started – not completed, unfinished patchwork quilt, half finished lamp, pictures cut out for cards and a room full of STUFF! One month she says? Hah! More like one life-time

  2. Gallivanta 9 July 2013 / 2:10 pm

    One unfinished oven cloth; been staring at me for a year now! I promise not to start anything new till it’s finished. Although that will be boring, so…..

  3. Robyn 9 July 2013 / 2:53 pm

    But starting is so much more fun! And so is staring, Which is what I initially typed as being so much more fun.. Staring back at UFOs even better. Can I stare at five UFOs? Christmas bunting, fabric advent calendar, umbrellas for possible umbrella tree (but I have to make a trip to Mayfield to buy the tree), empty frames to fill and hang on the fence, doll faces added to my creepy doll face display.

  4. Bronwen 9 July 2013 / 7:51 pm

    I’ve been feeling really pleased with myself for making 3 more blocks for a quilt I’m working on…but it had been a year and a half since I last did any thing on it!! I’m calling it a WIP not a UFO though. I will finish!

  5. robertafsmith 10 July 2013 / 8:55 am

    The dog for whom (which) I was knitting a patchwork quilt died before I’d finished it. I don’t have the heart to start it again ….. or do I?

    • Karen 13 July 2013 / 10:04 pm

      Of course you do. You are preparing in advance for your next pet. Think how pleased you will be with yourself finishing something ahead of schedule!m

  6. purplerulz 10 July 2013 / 10:01 am

    You do know there’s a new season of one of those obsessive hoarder programmes starting tonight (Wednesday 10th)? Watching these shows absolutely fascinate me and also make me feel like a minimalist!

  7. bronnypop 10 July 2013 / 11:57 am

    Good grief, you people! You’re all supposed to be appalled at my laziness, in order to further inspire me to finish things – NOT make me feel better about my own badness.
    Also, Robyn, tell me more about this umbrella tree …

    • jane 12 July 2013 / 12:02 pm

      Having endured hours of counseling for my UFO issues I have decided that it is the doing, not the finishing that matters. That moment when you start something new – well it’s an adrenalin rush, which sadly passes, but what is it with the world today that everything has to be finished anyway?

  8. mothercat2013 11 July 2013 / 10:28 am

    OMG!! Are you my hitherto unknown twin sister???!!! If I didn’t know better I’d swear you’re me!! UFOs? Hah!!!! I have chairs, drawers, cupboards, rooms full of them!! I could start my own fabric store, I have so much material!! Over the years I have dabbled in scrapbooking, cardmaking, bookbinding, papermaking, crochet, knitting, quilting, patchwork, iris folding, rubber stamps, making my own stamps, designing my own quilts, painting, calligraphy, mosaics, sewing, creating objects out of found or recycled materials, woodwork, carving, photography, fabric painting, stencilling, cut paper art, quilling, making my own envelopes out of old calendars, making bookmarks out of old calendars, making children’s scrapbooks using old calendars … you name it, I’ve probably tried it! I have mumble mumble quilts in various stages of construction, boxes and boxes of envelopes in various stages of construction, hundreds of cards in various stages of construction, gazilions of magazine pictures cut out for pasting into scrapbooks, thousands of patterns copied from magazines and books, oodles of paper scraps and buttons and shells and stuff, all waiting to be turned into something beautiful and creative and lovely to behold … WHEN I GET THE TIME!!! :))) At the rate I’m going, I will have to live to be 203.5 years old to make use of it all, but does that stop me buying more stuff? Pah!
    I loved that comment about the Hoarders programmes making one feel like a minimalist: they do!! I look around my lounge and think, Ooh, I’m not as bad as THAT, I’m MUCH better than THEY are! And reading the comments on your post so far, I can see I’m in VERY good company! :)))))

  9. ValerieL 19 July 2013 / 8:31 pm

    At least you are not a Gunner Doo. How many patterns have I down-loaded, printed and purchased then filed them in a big box because one day I’m going to do some knitting and will possibly maybe use them.

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