Why host a building challenge?

Open letter to the curious: Why Host a building Challenge??

My season 1 personal build with plans from Ana White.



My Season 2 personal build with plans from the  Shanty Sisters


Hey readers!

Everytime a new challenge rolls around- the number one question I get is- what’s in it for you? What do I get for doing a challenge?

Recently I responded to this question with an email to a potential sponsor- and I thought for the sake of redundancy I’d post the answer to my blog for the curious…
To answer your question– or to try to–
Why did I start this challenge? It started as something I threw out there to some of my building friends as an idea that we “challenge” all of us to build the same thing and see what the completed project looks like because everyone has their own aesthetic. It grew into a post on Instagram where I asked if anyone wanted to join “the challenge”. When the amount of people interested kept growing I decided to persistantly email the Queen of the DIY movement, Ana White herself, to see if she would judge the piece we would build. How jaw dropped was I when she agreed and suggested the winner receive a prize sponsored by her?!? After some emails and phone calls to my favorite building product suppliers – we put together a challange gift package for the niftiest build! Since then in getting to know her- I shouldn’t have been surprised at how insanely supportive and amazing she is!  We both saw the potential of a huge group of people with one common denominator working together.

I’ve never referred to the Challenge as a contest, giveaway, or sweepstakes because I cringe at those words. Instagram is chalked FULL of this. That being said, when I was new to Instagram I participated in such contests because I was in the learning process of how social media works and how to grow a business. My eyes were opened to the practice of giveaways, contests, and sweepstakes and that is where the word “challenge” was born.
For lack of a better word- I suppose it’s true- it’s a contest.  But for me- it’s a challenge. We challenge each other to do better, be better, and think outside the box- and hey if there’s a prize at the end of the rainbow that’s just a bonus. I even participate in the challenge to prove if I can do this– YOU can do this!

This is just something I do literally because I love building. I don’t see any monetary profit or even receive free products from this challenge because they all go straight to the challenge builders. I have made lasting friends as a result of this challenge, I have learned about new and cool products because of this challenge, and I am even friends with some awesome companies… but the coolest thing I can say is I know Ana White and thats freaking cool! And she loves this challenge, which is also freaking cool! And that makes the hard work worth it!
I just want to inspire someone to think outside the box and also to realize they can take a plan, use their hands, and make something amazing!! If one person feels that way- this was a success. Every now and again I do receive a few emails and messages from people who do say- thank you and they would have never tried it- if I wouldn’t have challenged them to do it. Which then makes me want to do it all over again!
That was a whole lot of verbiage for a simple nothing answer, but I just wanted you to understand where this comes from and why it’s here.
It will never be a contest, or for that matter, a giveaway. But it has potential to be something amazing. It has the bones to provide inspiration and honestly, that’s all I’m going for.

Happy building and supporting others!