Changing Directions with Failed Minibooks – Paperclipping 222

paperclipping 222

I threw away a few of my minibooks last month.

I don’t regret it.

Have you started time-consuming projects like minibooks, and later realized the project is not as meaningful and inspiring as you once thought?

  • Just because you were inspired to do something at one time, doesn’t mean it will stay inspiring.
  • Just because you started something, doesn’t mean you have to finish it.
  • Just because you finished something, doesn’t mean you are stuck with it.

Not everything is equally valuable and not everything is worth keeping always and forever.

But not every less-valuable minibook is utterly meaningless and should be thrown out, either.

What do you do with the projects that have lost their glow, both the finished and the unfinished?

Realizing I needed to free some space (and some peace of mind) I evaluated each one of my minibooks. Minibooks are bulky, hard to store, and more prone to damage, right?

In addition to the few mini’s I tossed away, I also found these:

  • unfinished minibooks that have meaningful parts, but are not meaningful as a whole and aren’t worth finishing
  • completed minibooks that have meaningful content but are not very sturdy in their current form

Do you have some like this?

It is okay to change directions.

I decided to change directions with these last two types and re-purpose them or reformat them into something different. I did this for 3 different minibooks in a video we released last night. In this video you’ll see 3 different options for what you can do if you have minibooks that are a nuisance in their current form, not as sturdy as you’d like, are not something you want to finish, or are only partially worth the space they’re taking.

Paperclipping members can find the video in the Member’s Area an on iTunes.

CLICK HERE for info about becoming a member!

  • Tiffany W.

    What a timely message! I am in the process of moving into a new home and I am re-evaluating everything about my home. As I go through my craft room, I realize that not every project I started is meaningful or valuable. In fact, I also discovered sewing projects that I had started a decade ago and never finished. I have been storing these things for years. It is time to let them go.

    I think this post and video really helps give permission to those who have hard time letting go, to actually let it go.

  • stepharmstrong

    Also very timely for me, as I was thinking just yesterday of converting my mini books to bigger pages!

  • I sure hope so, Tiffany. Your comment will be helpful, too!

  • Cool! Love that kind of timing!

  • Katherine Kelley

    Ditto as same others. I’ve been taken inventory of some supplies due to CM farewell of certain product line and I’ve come across a bunch of mini books – not all finished. Easy to toss. Into the laps of our ‘Grandmas’ who enjoy them lots, especially since they have dementia. Easier for them to read ‘cuz they are small, not heavy, not lengthy reads, have a definite topic as well as an end point (even when incomplete!). All attributes that are easier for folks with memory issues.

    So after seeing how engaged both my mom/mil were today before lunch, I rethought about converting them or trashing them. But I could create some pages that give the books last pages or holding pages until I decide their fate. Many of these books have plenty of layouts/photos with them and/or depict events they CAN recollect. As I write these words, these little undone books are telling me they still have value – undone and incomplete. Like we are ourselves.

  • Every book is going to be different. The ones I threw out had no sentimental value for anyone, least of all the grandma’s. :)

  • Tiffany W.

    After reading this post, I listened to a rebroadcast of a Freakonomics post on the Upside of Quitting. Thought it was very apropos to this particular subject and also looks into why people do and don’t quit.
    http://www.freakonomics.com/2011/09/30/new-freakonomics-radio-podcast-the-upside-of-quitting/

  • Read the blog post — sounds very interesting and I’m excited to get a chance to listen to the episode. Thanks for sharing. If I remember right, Izzy read Freakonomics when it first came out and he told me about he subject of quitting. Either that or he read it to me. We’ve done a lot of that. :)

  • Iceteeeeee

    As always, you provide unique perspectives and interesting topics. My Paperclipping membership is worth its weight in gold. Many thanks to you and Izzy for making this happen!

  • Emily Muto

    Hi Noell and Izzy, Thanks for this video! I was watching it on the iPad when my husband looked over my shoulder and commented how awesome the video quality of the video was, and I wasn’t even watching the HD one!! I am a new(ish) member to Paperclipping, after subscribing to the Roundtable podcast and wanting to support the show. The videos are such great quality, and I love how Noell’s commentary flows so smoothly. Great information and inspiration as well! Thanks again!!

  • Scrappybarb

    So happy to be a member as this video saved my time and that more than makes up for the membership fee. I had planned to do a football scrapbook for my son’s three years of playing. In the grand span of his 19 years, football just isn’t that important. I am now planning three layouts for his album covering his three seasons. And bonus! I don’t have an album taking up space that isn’t about an important subject to our family. Now I am off to put that empty football album in the donate bin! Thanks for the inspirational jumping off spot!

  • Glad to help! Over the past year or so I’ve done this same sort of scrutiny for albums, too! With so many albums taking up more and more space, if we don’t make big picture decisions like this we’ll end up with lots of lower-priority scrapbooks instead of the stories that are most important. Congrats on making that decision for yourself up front!

  • Love this topic as I’ve been eyeing my shelf of minibooks and thinking many of those exact same thoughts.

  • Jennifer Campbell

    Hi Noell! Just catching up on some member videos that I missed this summer while we were moving and just wanted to tell you that this one is AWESOME! I have never really been a huge minibook fan – I personally find them a) time consuming in a way I don’t enjoy, b) difficult to store/showcase and c) they are always falling apart on me! However, my super talented sister has made me quite a few beautiful minibooks about meaningful topics and I hate to see them disintegrating in a basket in my scrap closet :-( You have totally inspired me to see what I can do to salvage the ones I love and I feel like I now have permission to do away with the ones I don’t really care for! Also thinking my drawer of “potential” minibook supplies can probably be sold/given away!

    Thanks again for sharing your brilliant ideas!

  • Awesome! Thank you!

  • Jennifer Campbell

    Ripped apart my first mini book this afternoon! So incredibly gratifying! It was a little accordian album of pics my sister put together for me about our first x-country move. It was embellished but I had never gotten around to adding the journalling. I took it apart and added it to a PL page protector. So thanks again for inspiration!! Here’s a link in case you want to check it out :-) http://www.bigpictureclasses.com/gallery.php?m=view&p=1&id=605128

  • That is awesome! Great job. They look good in the pocket pages!

  • Really love this topic regarding reworking old projects or failed minibooks. I have some minibooks that are well-used and no longer can hold up in it’s current form… so I’m thinking of ways to transform them, instead of just throwing out. Lovely to hear your experiences and ideas. I think this topic of restarting, reusing or transforming failed/old projects would be great for more episodes… thanks!