When I started blogging two months ago, I wrote to my college friend Caila to tell her that I had finally decided to follow her encouraging Instagram hints that I should share some of my projects online.
Caila also happens to be an amazing blogger (you should follow her! Cailamade! ) and so I shared my heart with her a bit too. I shared that if I write, it is very important to me that I write a clear picture of real life. I am NO Martha Stewart, not anywhere close. I have 3 crazy kids and more piles of laundry than I know what to do with. I think it’s so easy to create this glossy, perfect picture online of something that life never is. I am real in person, can’t lie to save my life, SUPER bad at being cool. I want to be that person here too.
And those things are extremely important to Caila too. My sweet friend is SO good at sharing her beautiful talents in a way that is encouraging and real. Her sewing skills are far above mine, but I always feel encouraged by her projects and the new things she tries. And I always walk away feeling inspired to try something of my own.
We talked about inspiration and how we want to encourage our readers, and how we hope that encouragement leads them to feel inspired to create in their own way. We want them to be encouraged by reading about an average girl who attempted a new project. The end result is never perfect (more so in my case than Caila’s, ha!) but that doesn’t matter one bit. The joy is in creating something unique to who you are. Whether that means sewing, painting, writing, hosting a girls’ night, etc. It is our thought that when you feel encouraged, you are more confident in who you were created to be and will be inspired to pursue your own unique goals and dreams.
Isn’t it so amazing that we have the power to encourage others?
To illustrate this idea, Caila and I chose one of each other’s posts that inspired a project we created in our own way.
I was extremely inspired by the beautiful clutches that Caila made over the holidays.
She also worked with leather to make leather card holders.
These posts got my head spinning with possibilities and made me want to try to make a clutch AND to work with leather – two things that I have never attempted before! I wouldn’t have had the confidence to give it a try if I wouldn’t have seen someone else take it on with great results.
This is the result! My Inspired by Caila Clutch :)
I worked with printed burlap from Joann’s that I fell in love with. Not your standard fabric for a clutch but that’s how I roll.
With this project, I finally had the motivation (read –> BRAVERY) I needed to check out the leather factory in town. I learned a lot from my little adventure – 1. They don’t cut leather in yards like fabric, which means the piece I initially wanted to buy was WAAAY out of my price range. And I was NOT the cool kid in the shop when I asked about yardage – MY bad for being the newbie. :) BUT! 2. After some hunting, and not so awesome customer service, I figured out that they had a “Discontinued” table where I found a great piece that matched my fabric for $10! Sweet!
As a result of the encouragement I got from reading about Caila’s successes, now I feel comfortable in a leather store – oh yeah, not a rookie here anymore – Sweet. I also know more about the general layout of a purse/clutch and now the possibilities are ENDLESS. Woohoo! Thank you CAILA!
Read her post HERE to find out just how unintentionally identical our character ended up being to her sweet son, Hudson. You can also follow her on Cailamade, Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter, and she is @cailamade in Instagram. She is such an encouraging person to be connected with, you will really benefit from following her on some or all of her social media connects!
Caila’s blog is beautiful and she is such an uplifting person. As we were working on our projects, I was so blessed by connecting with Caila. We discovered, on accident, that we were both in need of some encouragement and finding out that someone else was feeling the same way I was helped my heart so much. We accidentally proved our own thesis. Everyone needs encouragement. Everyone needs to hear that they are doing a good job. That they are special. That they are just who they were created to be. And if we take just the little effort needed to remind those around us of those things – inspiration can be infectious.
Please read Caila’s incredible Encourage to Inspire post. We are hoping we inspire you today to be encouraged and to encourage others around you.
If you are looking for a quick way to encourage today, please consider joining our efforts to help children trapped in poverty by purchasing our Space Kid print. 100% of money raised from this print will be donated to Compassion International. You can purchase it in our SHOP or use paypal to send $8 to our paypal address at zac.jones (at) yahoo.com, leave a comment that you did and include your email address and I will email you a jpg.
Thank you so much for spending some time here today! If you are inspired to start your own Encourage to Inspire project in your own life – leave a comment and tell me all about it! I’d love to hear from you!