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View Poll Results: Do you prefer practical paper craft projects?
Yes 152 82.16%
No 4 2.16%
It doesn't matter 29 15.68%
Voters: 185. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 10-04-2008, 08:37 PM   #1
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Default Practical vs. Impractical

I love to blog hop and see all the creativity, but I have often wonder why some crafters choose to make things that seem to be impractical. These items are beautiful but serve no practical purpose (at least in my opinion). I won't give any example but I am sure you know what I am talking about. So I am conducting a poll to see if people prefer practical paper crafts over impractical. I personal have a hard time making anything that does not have a purpose. I guess the artistic side of me does not shine.
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Old 10-04-2008, 09:06 PM   #2
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Default practical?

I sometimes wonder about projects that I see. I think that some of them would be hard to keep dust free and clean. Maybe they are only meant as short term cute... I like some of the packaging ideas, but sometimes wonder if people think that we have lost our minds when we put so much time into wrapping up a couple of nuggets! Sigh - guilty!

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Old 10-04-2008, 09:46 PM   #3
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I make lots of "for no reason - thinking of you" cards and send them to friends and relatives throughout the year. They really seem to enjoy getting them.

I don't really get into the other papercraft stuff too much. I've stamped on some gift bags, and made little cardholders for notecard sets. That's about it.

I am inclined to be pretty practical by nature and haven't gotten into the purely decorative items. I agree, they are lovely, but I use my non-card making time in other ways. I sew for my granddaughters and also crochet.
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Old 10-05-2008, 12:43 AM   #4
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I tend to lean toward the practical too. I think it is kind of fun to play with some of the "impractical" stuff, but dang supplies cost a lot and I just am not as fond of throwing a ton of them in to gift wrap or something. Just my opinion...cute stuff out there though.
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Old 10-05-2008, 04:43 AM   #5
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What a great poll!

I think different people view "practical" differently. I don't think "thinking of you" cards--or any kind of cards--are impractical...everyone loves getting real mail, and they just show you care enough to let them know you're thinking of them. That's practical enough for a card, for me!

As for all the non-card projects in mags and on blogs, my limit is a combination of time/money vs. usefulness/beauty. For instance, I won't buy nugget tins, but I do use labels, cello bags and toppers, which takes very little time and money, and makes an inexpensive gift (some nuggets) look extra-special for teachers and those other people who deserve acknowledgement but for whom my budget won't allow limitless funds, IYKWIM?

I'll make covered notepads, Christmas ornaments, notecard sets (love the clear boxes from PTI 'cause you don't have to decorate them, LOL) and such, but those adorable table-top decorative cone trees with all the curls of dp...pretty, but I'm not doing them. Can you imagine storing them for next year? And what about scrapbook pages with scalloped edges or odd shapes? My pages all go into albums and whatever's around that page will show through...not attractively, I'm sure! So those pages look pretty in a photo shoot...but they are not practical.

Still, I appreciate SEEING those sorts of projects, because they inspire me to use those ideas in something I am willing to make and they help me think outside the box, so to speak.

I'll do framed pieces to hang on walls (haven't given any away...yet). Did you see what Ali Edwards did with the Martha butterfly punch, random scraps, and a shadow-box frame? OMG it's gorgeous and ever so quick and easy. Just my kind of project!
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Old 10-05-2008, 07:49 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by LateBlossom View Post
What a great poll!

II'll do framed pieces to hang on walls (haven't given any away...yet). Did you see what Ali Edwards did with the Martha butterfly punch, random scraps, and a shadow-box frame? OMG it's gorgeous and ever so quick and easy. Just my kind of project!

Do you have a link for this? Sounds intriguing! Personally, I'm a practical kind of gal. I will spend time and money making small things seem "bigger" such as teacher gifts, etc. but I don't go in for the home decor. My life is too complicated and busy to spend time making something that will is temporary or a dust-catcher. I have made some altered frames and mailboxes. but they're all functional. Just my thoughts.
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Old 10-05-2008, 07:52 AM   #7
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I like something that serves a function for me. Whether it's just to brighten someone's day, or my own!
Rubbah diet quote above, that's funny!
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Old 10-05-2008, 07:57 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by StampingShawn View Post
Do you have a link for this? Sounds intriguing! Personally, I'm a practical kind of gal. I will spend time and money making small things seem "bigger" such as teacher gifts, etc. but I don't go in for the home decor. My life is too complicated and busy to spend time making something that will is temporary or a dust-catcher. I have made some altered frames and mailboxes. but they're all functional. Just my thoughts.
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Old 10-05-2008, 08:00 AM   #9
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I'm really really bad at only wanting to make something that has a use of some kind. I have a hard time making something only to throw it away later. Or to make a gift for someone and have them wonder what to do with it.

Cards - I don't have a problem making those and sending them out, but if I venture too far into the wrapping, then I start to give my head a shake.

It is nice to see what others are doing, as it truly inspires me to get into my craft room and make something.
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Old 10-05-2008, 09:06 AM   #10
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OMG - that butterfly collage is BEAUTIFUL!!!! What a simple idea, but so effective.
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Old 10-05-2008, 09:42 AM   #11
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I'm a big fan of practical projects - especially ones that re-use packaging from something else. I always try to think of how and how long I will use something before I make it. One of my favorite things to do is alter Starbucks mocha powder cans - I make my own espresso drinks, so I buy their mocha powder, and it comes in SUCH a cute can. I cover them with DP and some ribbon and/or flowers, and my mom buys them from me to fill with nice teas and cocoas to give to friends.

I also tend to alter useful items for my stamping space - Mason jars for buttons have their lids covered with DP and ribbon that coordinates with the button colors, empty Prima jars get redecorated and reused for brads and eyelets.
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Old 10-05-2008, 10:15 AM   #12
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I personally like to make practical things, however I am able to see the beauty and appreciate the time and effort someone has put into creating a piece that I may not ever make. I can also be inspired and take elements that I might use on a card or whatever.

I LOVE that butterfly shadow box, it is simple but just gorgeous! I have 4 12x12 shadow boxes that I display in my kitchen with the latest scrapbooking pages I have finished. It helps remind me to take the time to get new ones completed.
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Old 10-05-2008, 10:30 AM   #13
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Hi.......This is an interesting thread. I've read the posts so far and would still like the initial poster of this thread to define Practical and Impractical by giving some examples. I think that would make it easier for everyone to understand what she means and respond to the poll easier. It's obvious by the posts that each person has there own idea.

Anything that you do with your craft is not a waste. It's the thought that counts, not necessarily WHAT the gift may be. You took the time to make it for that person therefore that's the important issue. What that person chooses to do with it is up to them.

Yes, when making items with paper, it is not something that will last for an indefinite amount of time. I think that's understood. For instance, your child makes a paper chain for the Christmas tree, it is enjoyed for that season. After the tree is taken down it is disposed of along with other refuse. Same is true with other paper decorations or table favors.

The same is true with a box you may make for a gift. I don't think it makes these things inpractical, it's part of the gift. Same would be true for a card holder of some sort.

Not everyone is going to appreciate the time and effort that you took to create the gift. You get the enjoyment care for that person by showing your creativity.

I get a lot of enjoyment out of creating things for other people. Yes, I'm sure not everything I make is appreciated by the receiver.

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Old 10-05-2008, 10:31 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LateBlossom View Post
I'll do framed pieces to hang on walls (haven't given any away...yet). Did you see what Ali Edwards did with the Martha butterfly punch, random scraps, and a shadow-box frame? OMG it's gorgeous and ever so quick and easy. Just my kind of project!
Yup! I made my very own! It's boo-t-full!
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Old 10-05-2008, 10:33 AM   #15
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I mostly make cards, but yearn to do more collage and mixed media pieces just because or for decorative use. I'm trying to learn more and to find the time to do other projects.

Something I've done lately is to spritz Memory Mists onto 9"x12" watercolor paper, cut the paper into quarters, and use it to make leaf prints from real leaves and acrylic or watercolor paints. I then edge the prints with metalic ink or stamp ink and mat them to greeting cards. These prints are easy and allow me to do something a little different, yet still produce a very practical item--a greeting card.

Thanks for the link to the butterfly collage, Lateblossom. It is just gorgeous! Ahh...to have the patience and the talent to line up the butterflies so perfectly.
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Old 10-05-2008, 10:57 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by LateBlossom View Post
Here you go!

Amazing!
That project is quite practical to me! It's wall art, and waaaay less costly than the stuff you can buy in Target.

I have to say that I love the practical. Even when I made a bunch of clipboards, I did it in a way that folks could still write on it and use them as...you guessed it... clipboards. I love mini notebooks and jewelry and things you can wear, hang, or use. As for the impractical. I enjoy looking at creative but impractical things, but I know, FOR ME, it would not give me as much satisfaction to know the recipient would only be wondering what they would do with it.

HOWEVER,
But that's the key... What do YOU find satisfying??? Face it, we don't make cards bc we have to. Tons of stores sell perfectly good ones, and we all are "over" the myth that it's cheaper! (LOL) We make them because we personally get satisfaction from the creative process. Ya know, I will catch myself staring at my own cards!!! kwim? As a matter of fact... I even hoard my own cards and projects bc they are just too darn cute to give away! HA! So, if there are people that enjoy their own creative,, beautiful, amazing and impractical art and it gives them satisfaction, GREAT! I'll just be over here making my little domino pins and then keeping them (just to look at)!
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Old 10-05-2008, 11:41 AM   #17
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Impractical (i.e. useful) hmm, if I only had theings that were useful, I guess I would have to give up all my decorative items and the art work in my house. They serve no practical purpose other than to give me joy. But with that said, I do know what you mean.

I make more journals, boxes, bags, etc. than I do cards. I don't know if the receipents truly use them or want them, but they are too kind to say otherwise. I don't expect to see an item displayed in someone's house nor do I expect them to use it. They can give it away if they want. My joy is in the making of the project and letting the person know I was thinking of them.

With any project that is meant to be displayed on a wall for some time should have a glass cover IMHO. I think the biggest thing for me is that I just don't like a lot of the table top stuff (frilly cut trees, etc.). I do like the butterfly project shown above, but I wouldn't hang it in my house (not my style) but I do really like it.

If I only made practical gifts I'd never make another project, sell all my craft stuff, and retire earlier because is it really practical to spend thousands of dollars to make some cards, journals, and boxes?
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Old 10-05-2008, 11:53 AM   #18
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I tend to make a lot of cards that have a lot of embellishments and such that I would never send out because of the weight and impracticalness (is that a word) of it. I love doing 3-D projects but I don't have anywhere really to display so I don't do as many as I'd like.
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Old 10-05-2008, 12:22 PM   #19
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I love paper crafting and I know many many others enjoy it too. Some people are very creative and paper engineers and they come up with some really cool projects. Although they may not be "practical" there is a challenge for them to actually create them. They get an idea in their head and need to see it to completion. I enjoy viewing all their creativity and although I may not reproduce it - I do enjoy it and am constantly amazed at they creativity! Sometimes it just seems never ending!

So I hope they keep creating so that I and others may enjoy viewing their work. Some of the things they create are actually works of art! In paper form. They are truly paper artists!
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Old 10-05-2008, 12:31 PM   #20
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I like it all! Most of the things I make I consider practical, but I doubt everyone feels that way. I mean, unless you're a teacher, who uses clip boards anyway? Mostly I make things because I like to make them and am thinking about the person I'm making them for. I'd like to think that all the stuff I make will be used by the recipient, but in reality, I bet in most cases, I bet they too afraid to use them just because they ARE home made. lol
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Old 10-05-2008, 01:26 PM   #21
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Thank you! What an awesome idea!

Quote:
Originally Posted by LateBlossom View Post
Here you go!
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Old 10-05-2008, 02:02 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by pjw2855 View Post
Hi.......This is an interesting thread. I've read the posts so far and would still like the initial poster of this thread to define Practical and Impractical by giving some examples. I think that would make it easier for everyone to understand what she means and respond to the poll easier. It's obvious by the posts that each person has there own idea.

Anything that you do with your craft is not a waste. It's the thought that counts, not necessarily WHAT the gift may be. You took the time to make it for that person therefore that's the important issue. What that person chooses to do with it is up to them.

Yes, when making items with paper, it is not something that will last for an indefinite amount of time. I think that's understood. For instance, your child makes a paper chain for the Christmas tree, it is enjoyed for that season. After the tree is taken down it is disposed of along with other refuse. Same is true with other paper decorations or table favors.

The same is true with a box you may make for a gift. I don't think it makes these things inpractical, it's part of the gift. Same would be true for a card holder of some sort.

Not everyone is going to appreciate the time and effort that you took to create the gift. You get the enjoyment care for that person by showing your creativity.

I get a lot of enjoyment out of creating things for other people. Yes, I'm sure not everything I make is appreciated by the receiver.

Patti
Only because you asked and I do not mean to be disrespectful to anyone that enjoys making these types of projects.

Things I consider impractical. Artist trading cards (only because when I first started stamping 9 years ago they were all the rage and now I have a whole binder full of them and do not know what to do with them), inches, stamped paper dolls (the really artsy ones), Fairies in a bottle, in the recent Paper crafts magazine there is a Batty Tag Invitation that I think is impractical. I have seen some mini scrapbook things that are impractical. I totally agree that what is impractical to one person is not to another, but I like to make things that have a function like cards, scrapbook pages, covered note pads, even some gift wrapping, gift tags, gift card holders, etc...

This is just an opinion. It was the batty invite that started me wondering what most crafters like to make.
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Old 10-05-2008, 02:15 PM   #23
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I voted yes. I found that I had won several card competitions with cards that I would never send because they just weren't me - and that was a waste of a card. So now I only make cards that I would send - doesn't mean I do, mind you, but at least the potential is there. I love other paper-craft projects, but they have to have at least some function, even if only temporary like table decorations.
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Old 10-05-2008, 02:30 PM   #24
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I read all your posts and I had to say, it does not matter. I make what moves me!

It may be or may not be practical, but I like it, I made it.
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Old 10-05-2008, 05:28 PM   #25
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vicnvin.......Your comments are interesting (Post 22). I have to say that I agree with most of what you say. Some of the items you mention I have no idea what they are.

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Old 10-05-2008, 06:01 PM   #26
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I too am a bit confused but I guess I make impractical cards because they have a lot of height (I love paper tole), but I give most of my cards in person, or send in a bubble mailer so it is practical for me I like to be different.


I just like to make what I like and hope people like it when they receive it.
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Old 10-05-2008, 08:37 PM   #27
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I'm a beginner... so I don't make many masterpieces. Yet? But I tend to only create things that I plan to use. So that means for cards: it has to be flat enough to mail with no extra postage (practical). Projects have to be giftable (to my relatives/friends who aren't into crafty stuff) or something for my own home (which is not very decorated).

BUT... I like to see some crazy, artsy "impractical" stuff on the blogs and magazines. For inspiration purposes. But there are some magazines I don't buy because they are entirely too far above me to even create and if I could make something I wouldn't know what to do with it.

ATCs... yep... it took me a while to understand what they are. Not something I would do.

Thinking about this more... it is like interior design/home magazines. I buy them for ideas but end up feeling overwhelmed knowing that I won't be able to achieve the same results. Or knowing that for my family a silk bed duvet or fur rug are impractical for my family.

Good conversation, glad you started the poll. Will be interesting to see the results.
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