That was my only creative box to check: writing. I had friends who could write and dance and stitch dresses out of nowhere, but I wasn’t as multi-talented. I had a very small, very specific place on the Creativity Wheel Chart.
I never considered myself exceptional, but I was good enough to graduate with an English degree, teach it for a couple of years, and even submit my first manuscript for publication in January.
The process has been exhilarating, amazing, and—despite my distaste for clichés—a dream come true. But after intensively writing for months on end, I needed a break. I’d seen my computer more than my roommates and found myself in a committed relationship with Word. Microsoft Word.
So by the time I handed the book over to Kingdom Winds Publishing, I was exhausted. Excited but writing fried. I needed to do something with my hands. Something tactile, something simple, something I could do while watching “The Office.” I wanted to—
Make earrings. The thought came from out of nowhere. Well, seemingly so. Because really, how many times have I downgraded Holy Spirit’s direction to be a great thought from ‘out of nowhere’?
I love big earrings, have loved them ever since 5th grade. So it made sense that if I were going to do something with jewelry, earrings were the way to go.
But that was it. I had a hunch, a gut feeling. There were no expectations, no business aspirations. I’d never made anything before, remember? I was a writer. Words were supplies. Crayons and ribbons? Not so much.
I Googled, YouTubed, browsed several online websites. I proceeded to visit my local arts & crafts store, purchased everything that looked useful, and blew about 30% of my paycheck.
And let me tell you, my first couple of earrings were rough. I tried to follow a YouTube video and—to no one’s fault but my own—ended up with what looked like garbage wire chewed on by a toddler.
But slowly, eventually, a season of “The Office” later, my barbed wire turned into something resembling jewelry. I had no instructions, no mentor. I was just experimenting with materials as if I were a pre-teen with refrigerated products. Maybe mayonnaise would go well with pickles. Or maybe I should just skip the mayonnaise altogether.
By some divine grace, I ended up with a real pair of earrings. And I knew that my roommates weren’t just being kind because people started asking if they could purchase a pair. Strangers’ affirmation encouraged me to try out other styles. I started ordering different fabrics online and a local boutique welcomed my products.
If you had told me seven months ago that I would have a Kingdom Winds store, I would’ve snorted. Pushed you away, smiled at you complacently, and snorted once more for dramatic effect. Even friends I hadn’t spoken to in a while were shocked when I showed them photos.
“Oh, my gosh. Rachael! These are beautiful!” they gasped. “I didn’t know you made earrings!”
“Neither did I,” I laughed.
Here I am with newly made business cards, a workshop that takes up a quarter of my bedroom, and zero ideas what this looks like for me in five years.
But maybe creativity isn’t something that’s just birthed in childhood. Maybe it just has its timing. And when the Holy Spirit whispers to us, “Go for it,” maybe all we have to do is jump.
Featured Image by Alejandro Escamilla