A crafty client of mine introduced me to a category of items in her home she referred to as “UFO’s.” The first time I heard her refer to these items I was understandably confused. Did she have an unusual bug that was flying in her home? Her home had always seemed clean to me… What on earth (or beyond) was she talking about?
Come to learn, she had a category of items she referred to as “UnFinished Objects.” These items were usually contained in bags or containers, but not always labeled and rarely together. Like I mentioned before, she is a crafty lady. The UFO’s in this case were knitting or sewing projects.
Once I understood this classification I encouraged my client to keep all UFO’s together in one space of the room while we were in the sort and weed part of our organizing work. Consolidating these items (and labeling the bags they were contained in!) enabled my client to get a better sense of just how many UFO’s she had. I’ll be honest, the number is daunting. Some projects required very little work to be completed, others lost interest due to change in personal style, others proved more difficult and less enjoyable. Regardless of this factor, my client was not ready to part with a significant number of these projects therefore the next step comes into play: how will the UFO’s be stored?
As mentioned before, the UFO’s are individually contained mostly in clear sweater bags or clear Ziploc bags. The problem is that sewing and knitting projects were mixed. Further, started and yet to be started projects were mixed. There has to be some logic to how these items are to be stored- and thrown on shelves was not working.
The solution my client and I came up with was to use bins or baskets to contain categories of UFO’s. My client has existing heavy-duty shelves in place that we can utilize better. My brainstorming with her determined that creating these UFO categories would better enable my client to interact with the space. My client took my suggestion and ended up purchasing some Elfa mesh baskets. These are great sturdy baskets with handles that will be labeled.
We have not taken on the task of sorting the UFO’s yet, but anticipate much success with this method. Are you a crafty person? How many UFO’s do you have around your home? How about in your car? Gather all of your UFO’s and be honest with yourself:
1. Are you still interested in the project?
2. Has your taste in crafts changed since the project was started?
3. Will the project take more time or money than you would like to complete it?
It’s ok to let it go or give it away "as is" to someone who may be more inclined to finish it. Containing your UFO’s in this manner will allow you to see just how many projects you have going at any given time. Determine for yourself how many projects are realistic to have going at one time. In the case of my client, she will never need to purchase a new project for the rest of her lifetime- whether she will or not will is her choice, but she has the ability to shop her own projects first.