picture from Heather Bailey store
Finally sharing a few of the things I learned from Heather Bailey last week. I hope they will motivate you like they motivated me. Here goes:
No idea is too simple.
I was so touched by Heather's sharing her inspirational and spiritual story about inventing hair accessories called Trash Ties. This was the experience that changed the direction of her life and opened doors for many future opportunities that she has gracefully accepted. Listening to her story I was further convinced that God cares about the details of our lives. Through random experiences and meeting people and making connections, she was in the right place at the right time to launch what has become a successful product.
Don't set limits for yourself.
She encouraged us to step out of our comfort zone, to reach out to the people placed in our paths and to dare to dream of things we wouldn't think we are good enough or capable of doing.
This rang true to me as I looked back in my life. I happen to REALLY love my comfort zone. It is a very cozy place to be. But as I look back at the times when I stepped out (or was thrown out) of that comfort zone I see that the people I met and the experiences I had as a result are some of the most precious to me.
Finding my job at American Quilting was one of those experiences. As was starting a blog. So often I felt (and still feel) that it wasn't worth the effort because it wasn't as perfect looking as I'd like it to be. My pictures weren't as beautiful as others I admired, my graphic design skills are pathetic and my html skillz are pretty much non-existent. But I am SO grateful for the wonderful people I've met and come in contact with as a result starting this thing! There are days still when I get so frustrated with my blog not looking the way it does in my dreams (lol) that I want to pack it in, but I continue to remind myself that if I wait to be perfect before I try something new, I won't accomplish much in life. If I wait until I'm perfect at painting before I even try to paint, I'm not going to ever create a masterpiece. If you wait until you're a perfect seamstress before you try to sew, you're never going to create that family heirloom,. It's the jumping in and trying something new, that teaches us and helps us progress. And often, in the end, the journey - the process- is as valuable as the finished product.
Nurture your creative self. Make space for creativity.
I whole-heartedly give an Amen! to this statement. I've already spoken my piece on that subject, so I'll spare you more of my blathering here.
Just as we all have an inner critic, we all have an inner creator. Put the inner critic in her place. Promote her: don't invite her to any of the brainstorming sessions, just the final editing process.
My inner critic is a little too domineering in my life. She's not the type that screams at me, but she's really good at gently nagging. And getting me to endlessly and unfairly compare myself to other people. The perfect way to stifle any creativity.
Find what is unique about you.
Hands down, my favorite line she said: "As a teenager I was always the weird one who was making quilts for her friends, but it always made me happy." I loved this sentiment because that was ME too! And I always felt like such a weird-o and totally embarrassed if anyone found out. And sadly, I'm still kind of that way. Which is why it's so lovely to have met so many others (through blogging and working in a quilt shop) who 'get' my love for playing with fabric. But at the same time, I'm still pretty hesitant to tell other people what I do, or even that I have a blog about making quilts.
some of my collection of Heather Bailey fabrics that I'm hoarding, I mean saving for a new project
And yet, it makes me happy. It gives me a lot of creative satisfaction. And if God has given me a talent and something that I love to do, what does it say if I choose to hide it? So embrace your talents - especially if they are unique. Let them enrich your life.
I'm glad Heather Bailey embraced that gift. I think she is one of the major players in making sewing and creating with fabric very cool again and sparking that interest for a new generation of women. And creating very cool fabric to create with. Woo!
Speaking of which, she previewed her new collection Nicey Jane. So adorable. And I loved her explanation of the inspiration behind Nicey herself. :)
And if you would rather hear from Heather herself, you can check out the clip of an interview she gave while in Salt Lake here. It's worth watching. Plus she gives a demo of a very cute flower accessory anyone can make. Even the guy interviewing her gave it a go.
There is also a fascinating interview with Heather at Startup Princess (here). You can learn about her Favorite Knot, how to not feel guilty about the fabric in your stash that you aren't using, and about her spinning wheel! Seriously, its fascinating!
I'm sorry again for the delay in posting this. I spent my computer time this morning deleting weird comments in Japanese that were very dodgy. And yesterday was busy because we finally signed closing papers! Yay! So we will move this weekend. I don't know what that will mean for computer availability over the next little bit, but I'll resurface eventually. And I still need to post a tribute to my faithful fence.