I asked my friend, Heather Borer, if she’d be willing to ask her some questions and post her responses here. I’ve just been so amazed by the way that God can take what we do–especially something that we think is ordinary or something that everyone else can do–and use it in powerful ways. As a bit of an intro, Heather is a crafter. It’s a shock we’re friends since crafts give me hives, but she is way too amazing to pass her by just for that!!
Hi Heather. Thanks so much for taking the time to join us! Could you please tell us a little about your Etsy shop?
I started an Etsy shop last fall to sell gifts and home decor that I mostly make with recycled items. I am a ‘green’ girl at heart. I hate seeing things thrown into landfills that still have life in them.
What made you start your store?
Ever since I could remember I had dreams of being a crafter. I always thought it would be really fun to have an Etsy shop and create but I had a fear of actually creating anything and doing it. I have a tendancy to be a perfectionist and nervous about how people view me and what I do. For years I did nothing. Then last year my husband had some medical tests that cost us a few thousand dollars out of pocket due to a heart condition he has. I am a stay at home mom so making up that money was causing me worry. I felt God pushing me to try it. I came to the conclusion that being a huge fail wouldn’t be that big of a deal and to follow that urge/need to create. I did a craft fair and was terrified but made a few hundred dollars and was told by many how they loved what I created and had huge smiles as they left with my items. I was so filled with joy that I was giving someone else joy with what I had created and using some hidden gifts that God had given me to help provide for my family. Through the months I have come to accept that I have made some “ugly” stuff and that is okay. As I tell my young daughters when a block tower gets knocked or falls over, sometimes its better when you redo it. Failing isn’t the end of the world and it feels so freeing to have that now.
What are some of your favorite stories of how your store has either impacted you, your family, or someone else?
I have had the most wonderful conversations with these people sharing life and really feel connected to others through doing this business. As I talk with my customers I hear wonderful stories of what my creations will be used for. A mother giving wooden HOME blocks to her daughter, a friend buying them for their friends as a very special thank you gift, and someone from Children’s Hospital Colorado selecting my Colorado Flag ornament to send to a boy sick with Leukemia in PA during the holidays. The boy was collecting something from each of the 50 states. His story has reminded me that I need to have daily gratitude for my families health and, although money is tight during this season of life, I am blessed to have the opportunity to stay home. I need to enjoy and be present everyday with them.
I know you have a busy schedule between taking care of your girls, working, volunteering, and the many other hats you wear. How do you find the time to craft?
My days are definitely busy but the beauty of a craft business is that is doesn’t have to all be done at once. I mostly come up with new items at night when kids are asleep and the house is quiet. I make going to bed at a reasonable hour a priority because ‘mama bear’ doesn’t do anyone any favors! I usually do 1 hr a few times a week to come up with something new but other times its fulfilling orders which can be done here and there throughout the day when I am home with my girls who are 2 and 5 years old. They are used to mama painting or cutting wood in the garage. At times I feel guilty about not giving my family 100% all of the time but I realize they are all better if they don’t get 100%. Its okay to do things for yourself as a mom and its good for them to spend time with Daddy or just play alone and enjoy one another. Often I pull out crafts for them and we do them together, just working on different things, or the best compliment of all when they want to make what I am making.
What advice do you have for anyone who is contemplating doing something out of their comfort zone, but they aren’t sure about it?
Totally do it!! Be courageous and challenge those thoughts or fears that hold you back. I think we many times interpret fear to mean we shouldn’t do something but that isn’t always the case. All to often we listen to those negative thoughts which are trying to drown out the ”you can do this!” message that is being whispered in our ears. I took a risk and as a result made enough money to pay off his bills and have a bit of money left aside with help of tax returns to have a trip of a lifetime with my husband to Italy. You never know how you will be rewarded for trusting God’s voice and how he wants to work through you. I also feel like I am setting a good example for my girls by showing them that its okay to take risks sometimes and to create, which are two things I believe we commonly forget to do, or just lose entirely, as we get older.
I hope you’ve been as inspired by Heather as I’ve been. She offers such a beautiful reminder to take risks, create, and tap into that saying that’s run through my mind so much lately,
“Dream bigger, child. No. Bigger.”
What dreams are bubbling out of your heart, but perhaps you’ve been too scared to act on them?
Psst, be sure to check out Heather’s shop!