A few years ago, the lovely Driftwood and I met up with our families at a National Trust place and did a whole load of activities that were designed for slightly less sarcastic people with slightly younger children.
One of the activities was making flying kites out of bits of plastic and string. This obviously led us to spend the afternoon wandering around the landscaped gardens dreaming up a business that sold kites made out of Liberty fabric that didn't fly at all. Because what kind of self-respecting craft business would actually make an item that had a practical use?
However. I was at a point in my career - go on, let's at least call it that - where I wasn't sure what direction I could go in. I thought I could take a bit of control for myself. Perhaps a little craft business, where I tinkered around making lovely things with lovely fabric, would be just the thing?
And so it was that I bought some books in order to learn to make kites that actually flew.
I learned about dihedral joints and eddy kites, and buying string that was measured in lbs, and the Beaufort wind force scale. I spent hours in the garden with a hacksaw, balancing poles. Making kites, it turned out, is more about physics than fabric. I had loads of fun, lots of trial and error and scribbled notes, and eventually came up with two kite designs, a small 'pocket' kite and a larger, fold-away model, and I made a few little kite brooches and did a couple of craft fairs and set up an Etsy shop and told no-one about it.
Megan recently used this quote by James Baldwin on her gorgeous blog, the scent of water.
...this collision between one's image of oneself and what one actually is, is always painful, and there are two things you can do about it; you can confront the collision head-on and try and become what you really are, or you can retreat and try to remain what you thought you were, which is a fantasy, in which you will certainly perish
Which is a bit dramatic - I'm not on the verge of perishing by selling a few kites - but true. Over time, the job I took three years ago because I needed a job and the hours were right has gradually turned into a home, into the only job I could possibly be doing. It's lovely. But it doesn't solve the problem of this suitcase full of kites.
So. Come and buy. The link is in the sidebar. I've listed the kites one last time before I shut up shop. The kites fly, and they're pretty, and I adored making them and I learned a lot - about taking control, and about going where the wind takes you.