Saturday, October 1, 2011

Can it be too clean?

When my sewing space is too clean, I don't want to "mess" it up. Does having a too clean space affect your creativity?
I have found that I like things out where I can see them. It helps me make connections, think of cool projects I could make, put fabric and patterns together to live happily ever after. One of the reasons I asked Mr. Hunting Creek to build my Great Wall of Fabric was so I could see what I had. I have some fabric still in those big plastic bins, and I don't like it at all because I can't see it there.
When I am working on a project I like to have everything out where I can see it. It's all over my desk, and if it is a large project, it might also be in stages on the dining room table, the kitchen table and maybe even the chair in my office. I work messy. Which is funny in a way, because in my professional life I am famous for being neat, orderly and a martinet about organization. Do you suppose that's because I am free to be messy creatively?

Last weekend I made tissue paper collages, to make Christmas garlands with. I haven't had that much fun since second grade. They were SO messy, involving glue, tissue paper, paper snowflake doilies, glitter and Angelina. I'm going to add foil and paints today. They are only meant for fun, and how often do any of us do something just to make a mess nowadays?
Some of my friends assure me that they can't get a thing done if so much as one thing is out of place. They have to work in a neat and orderly environment or they just can't stand it. Secretly I feel sorry for them.(I tell myself that messiness is a strength!) I grew up in a large family with many dogs, cats, fish, kids and working parents who ran their own business. Things were chaotic,messy, noisy and disorganized but the experience gave me a very high tolerance for working in chaotic conditions.
How about you? Messy or clean? Messy but won't admit it? Neat and proud of it? Neat but trying to be be messier?


Venus de Hilo said...

I'm trying to find a perfect middle ground. When everything is tidy and put away, I feel like I lose momentum. But when I leave everything out for more than a brief time, the clutter and chaos sap my energy. Ideally, current projects are out and accessible, but in tidy, at-least-somewhat-organized piles, and everything else is put away. Right now there are far too many WIPs on the sewing table, my weekend plan is to put some away, so I can work more easily on the others.

badmomgoodmom said...

Things are messy when I am mid-project, but I try to clean up between projects. Otherwise, I will have no place to work!

Plus, I suffer from allergies so I need to break out the vacuum regularly.

Beangirl said...

I work messy (um, and live messy too) but I really want everything to be uber-tidy and hyper-clean. Probably because I grew up with obsessive-compulsive scandinavians. So I go through never-ending cycles of letting things get totally out of control for a while and then having to tidy up before I can continue to do anything. Then it starts all over.

It's sort of depressing, actually.

What I really want is a MAID. Or magical elves that come in each night and know exactly where to put everything so that it's put away but I can find it again immediately.

Yes. Magical elves. That's the ticket.

Jane M said...

I love seing all my possibilities before I start a project but then I hate the inevitable clean up an d put away part. Then things get too messy and I'm paralyzed by distractions. I'd love to have my "staff" do the clean up each day so I could focus on the creative, fun part. But since that's not happening soon, I go through periodic ma cleaning binges and start the cycle over again.

Tanit-Isis said...

Messy, sigh. I wish I had magical cleaning elves (but I do like being able to see my fabric---most of it lives on an open shelving unit).

I was really excited earlier this year when I acquired a nice, big cutting table. Oops. It's always got a bunch of books and patterns (not to mention fabric) on it so I still do most of my cutting on the floor...

The mess starts to get to me when I start losing things, but the mess itself doesn't bother me. Unfortunately. ;)

The Slapdash Sewist said...

Sooo messy. I have finally got the mess in the rest of the house mostly under control. But the sewing room. Let us not speak of it.

Bunny said...

I'm one of those who is much more creative when all is in order. I love order. It frees my brain from distraction and allows me to concentrate on my creative energies. I simply cannot work in mess. Now, when I am in the throws of a project, yes its messy, but all gets put back into place every night religiously. In the morning I am greeted by an orderly clean space and ready to jump right into my sewing. Different strokes for different folks.