Day 212 Hobby clutter

About eighteen months ago now a good friend of mine opened a quilt shop. She had been involved in this hobby  for quite a while and had also worked in a quilt shop for several years before deciding to branch out and begin her own business.

Being the good friends that I am I naturally offered to help her get started. First of all helping out to set up the store and then she hired me to work in the shop one day every two weeks. I had never tried quilting before but have plenty of sewing skills so I decided I should take some lessons with her so I would be more knowledgeable for the customers seeking my assistance.

I have to admit that right from the start my heart really wasn’t in it. Knowing how much other hobby clutter I already had at home I really didn’t want to start something new that would require more equipment and I had no need for the finished product. Even back then my mind was on the minimising path.

Luckily my friend and I feel free to speak openly with each other and I had made it clear from the start that if she felt she didn’t require my services any more she was free to let me go. As it turned out her daughter was in need of some work hours and took over the days that I had been helping out.

It is a wonderful thing to have friends with whom you can be honest and open with. This situation left us both free to be who we are and do what is right for ourselves without upsetting the other. If ever she needs my help again I would be more than happy to oblige and I am sure she would be content in knowing she can always call on me.

Fortunately I did not accumulate much more than a few snippets of fabric during the time I was learning the craft which I happily gave to her to sell as remnants in the the store. All I have to do now is work through all those other craft supplies I still have.


This tote was an item I used during my scrapbooking phase even though it is meant for quilting I like to live outside the box and it was perfect for taking my projects to scrapbook classes. I decided to sell it recently and asked my friend if she would sell it in her quilt shop. It was a quick sale because she decided to buy it herself.  I made a fast $20.

Quilting Bag

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About Colleen Madsen

Colleen is the founder of 365 Less Things and lives in Newcastle, Australia.


  1. Divorcing a hobby is one of the hardest things to do. I am currently finishing up my long years at University and have five or so hobbies that I have done intensively in spurts. While I am concentrating so much on my studies, the hobbies have taken a back seat. I am not sure which will make the cut when I am free of academia. It will be a tough decision.

    • Hi Susan,
      nice to hear from you again. Luckily I have only two hobbies, jewellery making and papercrafts but the papercraft take up a huge space in my craft area. I do use it off and on and for now I will only get rid of the things that I know I have never really taken to. My plan is to try to use up as much as posible and sell the items I make to at least redeem some of what I spent. Now if I could just find the time and inclination.

  2. I can so relate to this, having spent this week cleaning out my artroom closet so I can concentrate on my two crafts: watercolor and stained glass. I have kept and moved so many miscellaneous boxes of rubber stamps and paper, paints, beading supplies, you name it… it felt good this week to finally donate/sell/toss it all. I seem to be more focused now without that closet nagging me…. to finally let go of the guilt of ‘not using’ that stuff or the money I spent on it. It’s a big psychological weight off. By the way, I read your blog every day and look forward to it– you’re the main reason I tackled the closet this week and was able to keep those unused purchase in perspective and let it go. Thanks ~~~

    • Hi Kelly,
      I don’t believe you have commented before so thank you for joining in the discussion here at 365 less things.
      If only it was as simple at one closet for me. There is a whole wall of craft storage cubes in my house to deal with. I have made a good start this week I think. I haven’t actually dealt with the items yet but I have put them aside to work on when I am not busy with other stuff. Good on you for tackling your craft closet though. I am sure you feel a great weight off your shoulders and just the thought of that makes me want to get out there and find more things to get rid off. However it is 11:08pm so I should probably get some sleep.
      I look forward to further comments from you in the near future.

  3. scrapbooking is the craziest gather so much stuff..but is so fun!!

  4. A friend of mine showed me a rag quilt that she had made for her granddaughter. Needless to say, I caught the bug. I went out and bought EVERYTHING to make my daughter a quilt for her new home. Working 60 hours a week & an ill husband that can’t do much other than watch TV, I didn’t have the time or energy. Luckily, my daughter took all the supplies and made her own quilt. There was enough to make her new baby a matching quilt. Now that I’m retired, I might make a small quilted throw for my sister, but I no longer desire to try quilting at this time. I really don’t need a quilt for myself as I am trying to become a minimalist thanks to you and Ms. Minimalist and doing quite well on my way to my new life style! Your link has been such an inspiration to me. Thank you.
    I had also thought that I’d paint all these cute, jazzy flowerpots. Did two and the paint peeled off (forgot to prime the pots first), all of those books and paint will be put on Craig’s list as a lot.
    Decluttering is my joy for now.
    I do have one tip that I would like to share with you and your readers. My husband will not allow me to get rid of all his tools that he hasn’t used in the last 22 years. Some of them he didn’t even know what they were! I got all of them out, soaked them in vinegar (read that in a magazine), rinsed well and dried them overnight on a towel and packaged them in plastic, sealed bags with my Seal A Meal. When the time comes to sell all my stuff (and his) it will be ready to go. I have also sealed all my income tax returns for each year the same way. Things don’t get lost or damaged due to humidity, or water damage. I use my Seal A Meal for all my paperwork that needs to be saved, jewelry, nuts & bolts, small parts that have to be saved for different appliances, etc. It’s wonderful!

    Thanks again for all of your encouragement!

    • Hi Terry,
      it is easy to be lured in by cute things before realising that you just don’ have time for them. Look on the bright side it was a quilt not a puppy. Odd comparison I know but it just popped into my head when I got to the word cute.

      That Seal A Meal gadget must be very useful to you though I must admit all I could think of was all that plastic. I am curious about the vinegar and the tools. Does soaking them in vinegar stop rust or was it just a cleaning method, I would love to know. I love a good helpful hint.

      It seems like you were working way to hard at that stage in your life. I hope things have settled down for you now. It must be so frustrating for you to be surounded by so many things you would just love to get rid of. At least you are able to sort things and get prepared for the day that you will have the freedon to do so. I am glad I have been a help to you and inspired you on your quest. Keep at it the feeling of liberation is so worth the effort.

  5. Having finally slept off the traveling malaise, I’m back home and ready to declutter again! Hobbies–well, I’m a knitter, spinner and weaver(that’s a weaver wannabe) which translates into a lot of fiber and yarn. The equipment for spinning and weaving is large, too. I’ve been weeding out so much of the fiber I know I’ll never use but if I am going to spin my own yarn I need the wheel, chair, and niddy noddy as well as the fiber itself.