Wednesday, August 25, 2010

The Perfection Trap

Perfection is a favourite blogging topic and unfortunately it is all too true and too easily to fall into! Sometimes we're waiting for the perfect time to do something, or the perfect amount of skills or money, the perfect person, the perfect job...the list can go on!

The trouble with the perfection trap is that one spends too much time and energy on making something perfect instead of enjoying the experience. Perfection is a great way to not get things finished either :p Recently I found myself caught up in the perfection trap while painting some mirrors. I bought a bunch of wood mirrors to paint and couldn't decide if I should make one yellow and orange or yellow and brown. The solution was to make both colours!

The orange one gave me a lot of trouble, almost from the start. I bought a shade that I thought would be heavy enough, but it wasn't. It didn't cover the light pencil lines and barely covered the yellow base. I tried adding red to bulk it up. The mixture looked great when wet, but dull when dry. I painted the same areas over and over and then I started to fret about some areas that were starting to look too thick. Ugh!! I was getting frustrated because it wasn't turning out perfect enough. The brown one was much more trouble free, so when the time came to seal it, the orange one was sealed too, warts and all. That way I couldn't work on it anymore!

Bird mirrors

But one has to be kind to themselves. Few people would notice the orange mirror's flaws. And it is a handmade item, not made by a machine. Flaws are inherent, no? And I bet whoever takes the mirror home won't notice at all. The contrast of the colours and the delightful theme outshines the tiny imperfections. The bird silhouette itself is from an imperfect photo of a sparrow I took in Banff in 2009. He was catching flies and moving too fast. I guess that's another reason not to dismiss imperfection so readily :-)


  1. Everything you said, is so true Christine! I find, when I don't think too much, and just let everything flow, it all works out! And, like you said, it's handmade! Those little things we call "flaws", make it special and unique!

  2. Very cool mirrors! I know what you mean about perfection.

  3. Thanks Pam! I have two green ones on the go right now. The green and purple one is telling me it needs some gold leaf (hope that works out ).

    You are so right Magic Love Crow. It's awful when you overthink something. I have to find the flow better, I guess!