Wednesday, February 8, 2012

a personal beginning story

I loved reading your sweet comments last week about starting. Such sweet and honest thoughts.

I thought that maybe, y'all might like to hear a bit about how I got started with my own shop? Sometimes beginnings are flashy and big but sometimes they come in a soft whisper. My beginning came in gentle nudges.

I wanted to learn how to sew so that I could make my own pillows and curtains. I had just left my job to stay at home with our eight month old son and I had lots of energy and gumption to learn everything new.

I was happily making curtains for myself and my friends, enjoying having a creative project to work on bit by bit. Mostly I did it for fun. And I would have never felt enough courage to market myself as a seamstress or ask for money for my creations.

But, my friends believed in me and eventually someone recommended that I check in with a local custom boutique owner to see if she could use any help. I had made maybe three dresses for our daughter and I was six months pregnant with our third child.

For a month, I struggled with my fear of failure and being under qualified and being rejected. But. My husband continued to encourage me to try.

So. One morning, I took my pregnant self in there and I left with a stack of bowties to try my hand at. Soon after, my friendship with the owner grew and I was steadily doing work for her. And that little bit of creativity opened up so much in my heart. I taught myself how to make zippered bags and I started making my own patterns.

My sweet owner friend pushed me to try to sell my own things with my own label and I joined a few friends in a small holiday craft-like home show.

And then I was hooked. It's been four years now and I've had to make some hard decisions (maybe we'll talk about those in another post) and I've had to learn to think on a business level. I've been rejected. I've failed. I've been outdone.

But. I've been challenged. I've learned what it means to not be limited by a spirit of timidity, learned how much that isn't from the Lord. I've honed my abilities and stretched what I can do.

It didn't take being discovered by some fancy person. It didn't happen all of the sudden. My beginning was right there in the midst of a handful of people who loved me, believed in me and nudged me to step out.

What about you? Do you have a beginning story to tell?

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