I’m delighted to finally debut the Day Designer. You can read more about it on the blog!
This is what I’m working on today. Actually, it’s what I’ve been working on for the past six months. We covered a LOT at Stationery Academy last year. I mean, a LOT. But as we’ve been planning and upgrading details for this year’s workshop, every time I’ve hit a new personal learning curve, I’ve tried to translate that into a new worksheet, or suggested best business practice. In addition to that, I’ve added new details about stationery business operations, (including a few new leads on some new channels opening up for designers).
While we’re still fine-tuning it, the 2012 curriculum is completely revised, totally updated, with all new pricing worksheets, branding homework, and an intensified focus on best practices in business (which quite a few of the attendees last year requested more of). While this year’s curriculum includes some solid basics that are always worth an inspirational review, I hope the multitude of additions and updates is challenging and inspiring to attendees!
Can’t wait to see and meet the Class of 2012 soon!
This morning, I was talking to a friend about all the plans we have in the works for the Stationery Academy Class of 2012. I was telling her that Natalie and I have been talking, planning, and prepping almost daily since we both got back from the National Stationery Show. We are SO EXCITED. My friend asked me why I thought people needed to attend, and a light bulb came on as I realized: I don’t think people need to attend this–I think they DESERVE to attend it. It’s about presenting you and your business in the best, most fulfilling way possible. It’s about encouraging you to be the best version of you that you can possibly be. It’s about positioning your brand for the most impact on your target market. Simply put, it’s amazing.
As I compiled this blog post, I have to admit that I got a little bit teary-eyed. Reading through the re-caps from last year’s attendees (see below) was so moving. The relationships that were built were incredible. The encouragement that has been offered has been incomprehensible. The inner circle that was created by the class of 2011 was invaluable. Those women are going places.
I cannot wait to do it all again. (With a few extra surprises thrown in!)
If you’re thinking about attending, and are on the fence, I curated this little list about why I think Stationery Academy is the most awesome investment you can make in your design career. Without further ado and in no particular order, here are the top ten reasons YOU need to be a part of the Stationery Academy Class of 2012!
- Between Whitney and Natalie alone, you’re getting a combined total of 34 years (yep, that’s thirty-four years) of stationery industry experience and insights on all aspects of paper: retail, wholesale, custom, boutique, and licensing!
- The food is going to be FABULOUS!
- It’s on the beach! They put little umbrellas in drinks!
- It’s an experience unlike any other: no where else will you be granted access to an inner circle of experience and encouragement so quickly. The attendees/roommates (if you so choose) are instant friends for life that you can call on for any reason.
- Combined experience from twenty other passionate paper designers!
- The most encouragement to build your personal brand that you can find in any one weekend! Not only will you find the motivation to do it (I promise), but we’ll walk you through the step-by-step on HOW to do it!
- Amber Housley, Rachel Shingleton, and Emily McCarthy: in their own individual rights are all amazing. Putting them all in one room is going to rock your stationer’s socks right off. These ladies are “Open Book Experts”. No questions are off limits. No industry secrets in this room!
- Because no matter where you are in your creative career, you’ll get a ton out of it. The value is amazing. YOU DESERVE IT.
- The SWAG is monogrammed. How can it get any more Southern and awesome than that?
- This year’s curriculum really dives into your brand and how to make your business even more you and therefore, more successful!
Here is a round-up of some of the reviews from last year’s alumni:
- Holly McKenzie from ShopHollyDays.com talks about Stationery Academy here and here.
- Stacie Shea from Stacie Shea Events blogs it here.
- Lucy MacDonald from Amare Design tells her story here.
- Courtney Warren from Come Together Cards chronicles it here.
- Amber Housley recapped her experience here.
- Jamie Grasso talks about her experience here.
- Jessica Ulrich outlined her experience here.
- And here is my recap of the 2011 Stationery Academy.
We’ve had people from various areas of industry experience ask if Stationery Academy is for them. My answer is that if you’re creative, and you’re an entrepreneur at heart, then hands down, it’s for you. You might be a retailer, you might be a wholesaler just looking for a new path to venture down, you might be young, you might be old. But if you are looking to get fired up and take your brand places, there is no way you will leave Stationery Academy 2012 empty-handed.
On a slightly separate note, just go have an AWESOME week.
So today started off not too well. I woke up at 3:00 a.m., dove into marking a few things off my to-do list, and as one thing led to another, I quickly found myself dissolved in a pile of (hormonal?) tears, at the end of the proverbial rope. When my husband woke up shortly thereafter, I asked him if he would put off his morning workout to talk me through a few things.
Our position in life has been, well, dire, over the past year. Normally I handle that pretty well. What would cause other people to cave and crumble, I often welcome as a challenge, an opportunity to learn, to grow, to become a better version of myself. I know all the right answers and I’m good at throwing them at my head: everything happens for a reason, this will all work out for the good, God has a plan, yada-yada-yada. I point myself towards a to-do list, cross a couple things off, celebrate small victories, and move forward. One foot in front of the other.
Today, not so much. The to-do list got to me. The affirmations weren’t working. And a series of rumors, lies, and ill-will that has been circulating hit me full force. As I started to dwell on the negativity (never usually a good thing to do), I realized that even though I was avoiding talking about it, I was still tucking it at the back of my mind–a bit like a grudge. On the surface I was doing the best thing, trying to be the positive, “bigger person” and move beyond it quickly, get over it, and focus on progress. But while avoiding it verbally, I realized that I was letting those little things pile up, so that I could pull them out and resent them at some point in time in the future.
What a waste of brain space.
I pulled out a piece of paper, and made a list–a list of people that have said things, rumors I have heard, and hurtful, painful comments that have come my way over the past few months. Making the list pulled the stress and worry and hurt out of my head, where it was festering (even though I wasn’t willing to admit that), and put it someplace where I didn’t have to stew about it any more. And one by one, I chose to forgive each comment, rumor, and assumption.
There is a quote by Eleanor Roosevelt that I love:
I don’t think any of us set out to be a small mind, and I definitely don’t want to consciously choose to be a small mind.
Choosing forgiveness, and moving on.