The law of diminishing returns
As you will imagine, India proved to be a rich source of ephemera and once home, a not-so-small pile began to grow on my workbench. I had a couple of ideas in mind for making good use of it all, the most obvious one being to create a replacement India panel for our staircase gallery.
Some readers might remember when this happened. One of the frames had contained a collection of Indian bits and pieces from an earlier adventure but with some of it badly faded, it wouldn't do to simply rework it. It needed a total overhaul and the addition of some fresh pieces.
So, the first project was to select and arrange things old and new and create a new panel. I'd painted it ages ago and had sketched out a rough layout so it was quick to put together. There are wrinkles in the thinner papers which I'm hoping will dry out a little flatter - if not, this is no family heirloom and certainly will not feature in any competitions!
In choosing what to include, I considered what I was going to put where - if I had only one card or trinket, where would it fit best? Where I had two - tickets, for example - did I want to repeat the same things in two places? As I completed my Project Life pages for those days, I tried to keep it slightly different - I'd already recorded the stories here in my blog, anyway. Just how many times do I need to repeat myself?!
So I used my Project Life pages for photos of us; personal images and fun memories which I don't generally share with the world alongside things which wouldn't really fit on the wall panel.
The pile of ephemera became a little smaller still.
There were still a few things there that I wanted to use in some way however, including this wonderful collection of stamps on the boarding pass for the return flight. There was also a little heap of rose petals I'd pressed between the pages of the Times of India - a sweet memory of all those decorations left all over the place each evening.
The answer was staring me in the face: a friend had given me a great birthday present last year of a small memory frame. I'd had an idea of putting some things from my birthday trip to the New Forest in there, but somehow, I'd not managed to get the right things together.
Well, is that the perfect use for it or what? Of course, having squeezed it all in between the two pieces of glass and then squeezed the glass sandwich into the tight frame, I wanted to tweak it a bit but (so far) I've resisted!
The thing is, I still have a heap of ephemera I've not used. OK, so it's a smaller heap and many of the things are duplicates of items already used somewhere. But how might I use it? Will I make a small book? Should I add an extra page in my Project Life? Shall I put it into a folder marked "India" in case it comes in useful sometime?
Please note that at no point did I even consider throwing it all in the bin and moving on. It's the one aspect of "an elegant sufficiency" I just don't seem to be able to grasp.