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.

Ripping yarn yarns

Fiction, like everything else in life, is subject to fads and commissioning editors are rarely slow in picking up on and exploiting trends. Book clubs, cooking, conspiracy theory thrillers and paranormal romance have all recently been done to death but, ta-da, as luck should have it knitting has been experiencing a bit of a renaissance.

Ditching its nana-ish image and becoming the super, trendy craft de jour, “stitch ‘n’ bitch” clubs have sprung up across the globe and famous knitters such as Uma Thurman, Lily Cole, Tracey Ullman and Sarah Jessica Parker have added their celebrity cachet to knitting’s hot, new profile.

Authors have reached for their knitting pins and knitted up some fiction with a crafty twist: often with a diverse range of characters these titles bring focus to the value of female friendship and the many and varied pleasures to be found in the creative process. Yes indeedy, nothing beats the satisfation of a well executed gusset stitch, and even if you are too busy/cack handed/lazy to indulge in any real craft activity you can live vicariously and get all those good homeskill vibes from your fiction.

This month we’re celebrating all things practical at the library and we’ve selected some fiction titles on a knitting or quilting theme. But don’t worry if you aren’t a big fiction reader, the library is also chock-a-block with knitting memoirs, knitting magazines, patterns and inspirations as well as many, many other practical craft titles.