Each month, a group of craftswomen from around the world join together and give their responses to the same question...this month, our thought to ponder is:
'Failure sucks...but instructs'
Hmmmn. Not easy, this one. Prepare for honesty by the bucketload...
I can honestly say that good things really can emerge from failure. Just over two years ago, we embarked on a huge lifestyle change. We sold our house and almost everything we owned and upped sticks and moved here, to the middle of a glorious forest, to set up a luxurious tipi holiday campsite. We had spent several years talking about it, researching it, finding the perfect place for it and gaining planning permissions for it. We started work on it...but this happened and that happened, and the whole project faltered. Now that's a blow to your self-worth.
The woodcutter continued with felling and stripping the tipi poles and I worked in the evenings on fancypicnic products. We just couldn't be defeated by this. We had many black moments - moments that so often made it hard to get out of bed in the morning. But how can you let your children down? How can you sit back and let it consume you? Both of us have artistic backgrounds - he'd been a product designer since graduating - and being thrown into this peculiar abyss of 'now what?!' made us think. Think really hard.
The woodcutter hates waste...our tipi poles needed chopping to length and the thick butts removing...and these smoothly peeled offcuts felt good in our hands. They smelled good. They looked darn good!! There must be something we could do with these....
And there was. The Log Basket had arrived. It certainly isn't going to make us millionaires, and it is extremely hard work, particularly for the woodcutter - but it is truly a family business, one where we can spend more time with the children but at the same time work all night if need be. We're doing it for ourselves and we have discovered that working for yourself is tough but incredibly rewarding. It is immensely challenging, to say the least and throws us into many a conundrum - but we like a challenge! We can also see that from this our children are learning. They often get involved with various processes, from helping to offload the logs from the kiln and stack them, to popping the tealights into the candleholders and lending a helping finger when tying the raffia on the gift boxed packaging. My fancypicnic baby can develop alongside, maybe even become integrated within The Log Basket (watch this space), and I like that. One year on, I can see that we have room to grow and widen our product line. It is certainly different to cleaning tents and laundering sheets! It sucked to fail, but we realised that we could, and should, be resourceful - and with a bit of imagination and gritted teeth we could change things. A hard lesson to learn, maybe x
Please now pop in on my fellow Merry Go Rounders - their bloglinks are in the sidebar. We are all in different timezones, so please call back to read their posts. Have a great Friday!