festival, personal, surprise -

Hiding Stars in the Sun (and stepping out of my comfort zone)

Sometimes it's good to do something that puts you slightly out of your comfort zone. It takes a bit of courage, but once you've done it, you just know that you'll feel good. It doesn't need to be something huge - you don't need to jump out of a plane or run a marathon. All you need to do is something that breaks your usual script and is out of the norm. It might require a bit of thought and effort, but the rewards are huge. It might be going to an event by yourself, or trying something that you've always wanted to try. It's getting up off your bum and doing something, rather than sitting with a glass of your favourite tipple and watching a box set (although this definitely has a place too!).

My 'something' was a couple of weeks ago, on a sunny Sunday. I was attending the Yardworks graffiti festival in Glasgow with my family. We've been before and it's a great day out - watching artists produce amazing murals, enjoying delicious street food with a few drinks, and generally chilling out. This year I wanted to take the opportunity to do something, something that would be a little out of my comfort zone. So I took a supply of surprise stars with me.

Surprise Stars

They're little origami stars, hand-folded by me, and each one has a compliment written inside. There's simple instructions written on the tail of each star so that the finder knows how to open them.

What I wanted to do, was to give out the stars to random people enjoying the festival. It wasn't a marketing exercise - there were no contact details or anything that would lead them to me. It was simply to give people a lovely little surprise and brighten up their day, although with the sun shining it was already looking pretty bright!

SWG3 Yardworks Graffiti Festival, Glasgow

We came up with a rough plan - my husband would use his wannabe magician slight of hand skills to put the stars onto the tables, hopefully without people noticing him doing it. I would then follow on a few moments later to see what happened... Would people pick them up? Would they open them? How would they react?

What I saw was lovely.

People did pick them up.

I saw this lady take photos of the star on her phone - I wonder if she put the photo on social media?

Paperbuzz Surprise Stars

Paperbuzz Surprise Stars

Everyone followed the instructions and opened them.

Paperbuzz origami surprise stars

I saw the expressions on their faces change from 'what on earth is this?' to huge smiles as they read the compliments inside.

Surprise origami stars

Paperbuzzemma surprise stars

They showed their friends sitting next to them.

Surprise Stars by Paperbuzz

Surprise compliment stars by Paperbuzz

Some tucked the stars into their bags to take home. One girl got her dad to take a photo of her with her opened star.

 Surprise stars by Paperbuzz

I heard another person say 'I don't even know how it got here' - I told my husband and saw him puff up with pride about how good his slight of hand skills must have been.

I think that if the stars had belonged to someone else, and I had been simply helping them to hand them out, it would have been no bother at all. But it can be really difficult to put yourself 'out there' for yourself, with something that you have created and put so much of yourself into. You really really want people to like what you do - you just can't help it.

Well, on this occasion, I think that my risk paid off. I'm beaming from ear to ear.


How could you break your usual script? Get creative. Be brave. Just go for it. I'll be right behind you all the way. Get in touch via Instagram or Facebook and I'll be your cheerleader!


If you'd like your own set of surprise stars, you can find them here.

I also do stars that can be included with orders for small businesses, and they're here.

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