Ok people. It is official, I have completely lost it. The senility has set in.
Most of our festivals are about food, aren't they? This Diwali was different. The sweets poured in as usual. Strangely, I was not one bit longing to eat the sweets. I was actually salivating looking at the pretty boxes they came in!
My dad ruefully shakes his head for I have turned his study into a dump yard of sorts. I have stashed all the spoils of my raids there. Right now, my art supplies bag is stuffed with loads of these cardboard boxes, in all shapes, sizes and colours. Sunmaid raisins, Shree Mithai boxes, those pretty ones that the dry fruits come in, a blackberry phone cover, a flipkart casing that I use as a base for all my cutting / sewing and even a really pretty looking wedding invite that I will use for something funky! I have rolls of coloured paper – the whole range – glass, wax, chart, construction, waterman, origami, quilling & velvet. Phew! To add to this, I have ribbons, thread, foam, felt, paints, crayons, glitter, glue, stickers, paper plates, my sketch book and an epic one kilo of poly fill that I ordered from a nearby mattress store (much to the amusement of the owner!) Right now I am in the process of building up my inventory with fabric - old dresses, ethnic prints & decent sized scrap.
My mother opened a pack of oatmeal cookies, and my ears stood up like a dog’s, hearing the crackle of that sturdy paperboard. My mother looked at me with an expression that I would describe as horror. She immediately crushed it and put it in the dustbin with a firm ultimatum to me to use up all the boxes that I had already hoarded! Much to the chagrin of my mother, I once considered washing and storing a tin can that had gulab jamuns and rasgullas!!!
As a kid, I used to love recycling stuff and turn it into something artsy. Matchboxes would become little houses, After Eight chocolate covers used to become dresses for stick dolls, calendar boards would become frames for my paintings, colourful sides of magazines would find their way into collages, old plastic / tin cans would be converted to cute piggy banks or art supplies holders. Thanks to my primary school days, I also got hooked on to sewing at a young age. Embroidered hand towels, pretty pillow cases with lace, tiny frocks; we still use some of the stuff I made. Over the years, they have gone from hand towel to kitchen rag, but the point is, we still use it.
These craft-y fetishes got lost somewhere in the humdrum of everyday life as I grew up. I was at crossroads after school, when I got an admit into a visual communications course at a top arts college in the city. Quite cinematically, the butterfly flapped its wings somewhere, and I also got an engineering admit into a top college just as my dad drew a DD for the viscomm course. Viscomm was not yet an in-thing at that time, I think that was the introductory batch. So with liberal advice from all quarters, I decided to go down the time tested engineering route.
I have no complaints and regrets with the way my life has panned out – I’m in a happy place right now. If I had to relive my life, I would probably make exactly the same choices I have made thus far, but I like to drift off into dreamland and imagine how different my life would have been had I taken up the viscomm course.
Anyway, the craft craze is back and how! I am currently OD-ing on making toys for baby A and have been going pin-crazy on Pinterest. Much to the relief of my entire family, I have been slowly but steadily turning all the stuff from my arsenal into playthings. Of course, the next worry is about where to store this growing pile of toys, but that will be addressed once it reaches critical mass! I’m off now to snoop around Pinterest for all the awesome things that people around the world make and plan my next project. Busy days these are…