Friday, January 15, 2016

Too Much Stuff

I live in a small 2 bedroom house with my husband and 2 children. We have problems keeping our stuff to a manageable amount! Our garage aka my studio is getting better but is still packed. I donate to goodwill regularly and often without my family knowing...they still haven't noticed the stuff that is gone!

I used to buy a lot of home decor stuff...cute stuff that caught my eye as the shelves at the stores changed with the seasons. I saw the video "The Story of Stuff" and it changed my life...I basically sold everything in my house, except for my family heirlooms, and moved to a 560 sq. ft. apartment in an Eco Village in Portland, Oregon with my husband and son. I was sick of clutter and the driving force of consumerism! I changed directions in my career - moving away from making stuff- especially disposable stuff- to animation.

I developed cubital tunnel syndrome while studying animation -which is very painful for my computer mouse hand/arm- and has hindered me from working full time on the computer. Alas, I turned to the earthy, soft material of clay but am know faced with the stuff dilemma.

How do I build a handcrafted ceramics business when I don't want to feed consumerism, fill landfills, or add to clutter?

I suppose I try to create pieces that people will really connect with and not chunk in the landfill when the next design comes along. Hopefully I'll develop relationships with my customers similar to the "Know Your Farmer" movement.

Bringing a smile to your face when you drink from a mug I made or put a flower in a bud vase...I suppose that is my mission really.

So instead of running to Target and buying some mug or flower pot that was mass produced in another country, try buying local and handmade :)
Don't Give Up! Fight the clutter! Connect with your stuff on a meaningful level!

In the meantime, I'm going to work on that ugly garage aka studio of mine.