Monday, July 30, 2012

Fighting Perfectionism: One Homemade Card at a Time!

If you were my friend, and you had a birthday, chances are you would NOT get a fancy homemade card from me. And not just because I just don’t consider myself a scrapbook-y, paper-crafty type of person. :/ I’d just much rather spend my time, money, and effort on the gift itself—which I carefully select according to your tastes, collections, and any little desire you might have ever mentioned!

But the card? Well, since chances are it will end up in the garbage between one minute to one week from when you open it, I’d much rather scour the Hallmark shelves to find the perfect sentiment—that someone else has already spent hours dreaming up, designing, and printing on fancy paper!
Okay, let’s rewind that. (Insert sound of record rewinding) To be totally truthful, my biggest problem with making homemade cards/gifts is that dreaded “P” word: PERFECTIONISM! I am never satisfied enough with the mediocre results of my handiwork to be willing to present it to someone else!
Now you might not be able to tell this from the condition of my house some(or most) of the time, but when it comes to things that will be seen by/shown to others (including this blog!), I have a hard time with wanting everything to be JUST RIGHT before I can share it with everyone.
Maybe I should start a club… “Hi, my name is Kathryn, and I’m a perfectionist!”

As you can see, I love to pile on the patterns—each card has no less than three different patterned papers involved! The “Friends” card was for a sweet friend from church, and I love the fresh, youthful feel with the stripes and flowers. :)

But when two friends came over to celebrate their birthdays the same evening, AND I couldn’t make it to town to get a card (AND I didn’t have an extra arm-and-leg to buy them), I had to learn to squelch my inner “Martha-Stewart-wannabe”and be content with making them!

Though I’m not a scrapbooker at the moment (I don’t have enough time or space to spread everything out and “scrapbook it right”— I know, more perfectionism…), I do have a LOT of scrapbook stuff! (acquired BK [Before Kids]—back when I did have the time and space!) So all I had to do was dig through my stash and grab a bunch of semi-coordinating stuff, then spread it all out and see what looked good together!

The “Imagine” card was for our “church grandma” (a sweet elderly lady who has “adopted” our kids—or is it they who adopted her?), so I tried for a slightly more old-fashioned feel. Hence, the vintage-y flower “fairy”stickers and the floral photo corners on the frame…

The whole card-making process ended up taking several hours, but I had to finally force myself to be satisfied with the results—mostly because our guests were due to arrive any second! As I’m coming to realize, the whole “perfectionism”thing is based on another “P” word: PRIDE. Wanting everyone to think that I’m a miniature “Martha Stewart”, that every craft I touch and every project I make turns out flawlessly and effortlessly perfect, is NOT a good motive for doing things, and only leads to defeat and frustration! Meaning I end up feeling like this:

So while I still want to do things the absolute best that I can, I’m coming to realize that perfection is NOT attainable—OR expected! Yes, it’s good to do your best whenever you work on a project, but not for your “reputation’s sake”... “Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might.” “Whether therefore ye eat or drink, or WHATSOEVER YE DO, do ALL to the glory of God.”(Ecclesiastes 9:10a, I Corinthians 10:31)

No, I’m not Martha Stewart… or Karianne,Kim,or Abbie… But if one project I make or card I give puts a little more heart into the world and a smile on someone’s face, then I’ll be happy.

And so I work on licking my perfectionism—one homemade card at a time!

P.S. My entry into Overflowing with Creativity at It’s Overflowing is sponsored by Appliances Online and their Best Freezers!

Parties I link to:



  1. Imperfections are what make us unique!

    I think your cards are adorable. My grandmother makes a package of homemade cards for me every Christmas. Homemade cards are always so much better than store bought in my opinion!

  2. Amen sis! ;) I'm working on the same thing!! "Perfectionists R us!!!" ;)

  3. I hear you! That is why I will NEVER, EVER, EVER scrapbook. No matter how hard I tried, the amount of time I put in to it, etc., someone else's scrapping was always WAY better than mine. It was super defeating.
    I love the cards you made. Super special!!

  4. Shoot. That comment posted as my husband.

    My name is Erin :).

  5. I think the imperfections in cards add a little character to them. Even if you're making several of the same design, those imperfections make each one unique! Don't give up on it if it's something you enjoy! :-)

  6. Ashley is right - imperfections make us unique. However, I am pretty picky about the way things look as well. I've done projects and thought they were complete only to have this nagging feeling that it just doesn't look right. So then I start over again.

    I love your cards. I think they look perfect! :) Thanks for sharing on Marvelous Mondays.


  7. I could totally join in your club... wish I could do better in that area! I think your cards are beautiful and I am sure that your guest felt all of the love behind them.

    Take care,



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